Thursday 11 February 2016

Press Release in support of Nestle Contract Workers Union

11th February 2016

Bharat Mukti Morcha (BMM) extends support and solidarity to Nestle Contract Workers Union (NCWU) based at Maulingem, Bicholim. For the past few months BMM has been interacting with NCWU ever since they shifted their agitation in Panjim. BMM is concerned about targeting of Union Leadership in fabricated manner in order to suppressed workers Union activities. BMM has identified that two of the dedicated and talented leaders of the NCWU Anand B. Shirodkar and Sandesh Gawas are placed on suspension. Workers had formed NCWU on 27/11/2012. Details of the background and fantastic union activities are listed accessible from our blog

Our investigation has revealed that Nestle has 8 contractors that supply labour to the factory in Maulingem. One of this S.P.Enterprises has suspended Anand B. Shirodkar while another one M/s Harsh Security and Labour supply services has suspended Sandesh Gawas. Though workers has filed complaint before labour commissioner placing various issues for resolution on 24th June 2013 and number of hearings has gone by ever since. However refusal of the Nestle management to co-operate by their presence has left the issue unresolved. Even the requests from the Goa labour commissioners to remain present for the hearings has not been honored by Nestle management citing the reasons that they are not involved in master – servant relationship with the contract workers. However involvement of Nestle is revealed from the fact that both the Union leaders Anand B. Shirodker and Sandesh Gawas were placed on suspension on the same date of 23/8/2013. One does not need rocket science to guess that this has been done to prevent labour awakening and unionization, and spreading of Union activities and not for cited reasons of criminal behavior and absenteeism from work.
This is a very sad reality of Goa’s industrialization. Innovative forms are deployed for the purpose of labour exploitation with legal immunity for prosecution. Contractors in collaboration with Nestle Company through these practices are involved in the process of mutilation and disintegration disguised as development.  BMM considers what is happening to NCWU as symptomatic of industrial scenario of Goa – rampant labour exploitation through contract labour with exploitation as a package. If Goa Government labour Ministry cannot get Nestle to discussion table then it must change its name as Ministry of Slavery.

Maggie Silveira

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