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Maruti to start production at 2nd Manesar plant

Last updated on: September 2, 2011 10:14 IST

Maruti to start production at 2nd Manesar plant

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BS Reporters in New Delhi/Manesar

Maruti Suzuki has decided to bring forward the launch of its second Manesar plant and start commercial production in a day or two, instead of by the month-end as planned earlier.

The move to commission the new facility a month ahead of schedule comes in a bid to deal with the production impasse the company finds itself in.

Workers at the first Manesar plant have been locked in a fresh stand-off with the management since Monday.

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Maruti to start production at 2nd Manesar plant

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The company has already lost production for four days (it produces 1,200 cars a day), even as it was able to roll out nearly 160 cars on Wednesday and on Thursday.

A senior company executive said, "Our engineers are working day and night to bring the second plant on stream.

"Being a state-of-the-art plant, the output with the same man hours will be at least 30-40 per cent higher than the existing plant at Manesar.

"Since the company is short of manpower at this stage, starting operations at the second plant will be a shot in the arm."

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Maruti to start production at 2nd Manesar plant

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The second plant at Manesar, set up at an investment of Rs 1,700 crore (Rs 17 billion), has capacity to manufacture 250,000 cars.

However, the move has not impelled the 2,000-odd workers to relent and come back to work by signing a good conduct bond.

Instead, they are ready for a collision course. Workers of the dissenting Maruti Suzuki Employees Union, which was formed to represent the Manesar workers, spread out in the Gurgaon-Manesar belt on Thursday.

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Image: Maruti RIII.

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About 3,000 workers belonging to unions of other companies in the region assembled in front of the Manesar plant to express solidarity with the protesting workers.

Shiv Kumar, general secretary, MSEU, said, "We are not going to sign the good conduct bond as demanded by the management.

"The management has to take back the suspended workers and recognise our independent union. Unless our demands are met, we will not resume work.

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"We are going to take out a rally and petition in front of the Collector's office tomorrow," added Kumar.

The company on Thursday hired 180 skilled technicians on contract, taking the total number of workers hired over the past two days to 300.

In addition to this, 50 engineers from the Gurgaon plant and 290 supervisors are working at the Manesar plant.

"We now have 680 employees working at Manesar.

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"About 20-30 per cent of this workforce would be deployed at the second plant. The hiring process will continue according to the requirement," he added.

The company had put in place contingency measures and started pre-assembly work by operating the weld shop, press shop and paint shop at the facility with the help of some line managers and shop-floor supervisors earlier.


Image: Maruti's Manesar plant.

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