Saturday, March 29, 2014

india Garment workers run riot after colleague’s death, 10 cops hurt

GURGAON: Hundreds of workers of a garment export company in Udyog Vihar went on the rampage on Friday after the death by electrocution of a colleague, which they attributed to the company’s negligence. In the violence by more than 1,000 Orient Craft workers, 10 policemen, including the ACP (city), were injured and several vehicles were vandalized on Friday afternoon. The victim was identified as 34-year-old Sunil Kumar, a native of Kanpur in Uttar Pradesh who lived in a rented accommodation in Sirhaul near Sector 18.
Sunil used to work as tailor master in the company. After the body of Sunil was found on the first floor of the company building, it was rushed to a nearby private hospital by company officials and several workers. The doctors there declared him brought dead and the autopsy report stated the cause of death as electrocution. The management, however, claimed he had died of cardiac arrest, the workers said.
Company officials did not answer repeated calls from TOI. “In the postmortem report, the cause of death is electrocution,” Dr Pankaj Mathur, who conducted the postmortem, told TOI. When news of the autopsy report spread, many workers abandoned work and went berserk. They smashed cars belonging to the company brass parked near the gates. Police rushed to the spot, only to face the wrath of the workers, who attacked them with stones. The violence could be reined in only after additional police forces were called in. Employees were bitter about the response of the company to the death of their colleague.
“They are least bothered about our lives. Every other day, somebody gets injured due to electrocution here. They have been approached many times but to no avail. We called police after the death but they also supported the management and that made us resort to this protest,” said workers Rajesh, Jai Kishan Mishra and Sudhir, who were among the protesters. “Our police force reached the spot in time and tried to make peace but the workers suddenly started throwing stones on our men. Several of our officers, including the ACP (city), have sustained injuries. We have lodged an FIR against known and unknown protesters and will arrest them soon. Breaking the law is not acceptable to us,” said Alok Mittal, police commissioner, Gurgaon.

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