Angry laborers attacked Indian iPhone factory

New Delhi – Angry Indian workers smashed windows in a factory office and overturned cars, which make iPhones, and often examples of government efforts to encourage manufacturing and greed companies to diversify away from China As postponed by the government.

Indian television showed workers throwing stones, throwing office furniture and setting fire to a sign in Vistron. Of Corp.

Operation near Bangalore. Labor leaders said the Taiwan-owned company has workers who are a contract manufacturer for Apple Inc.

Were worried about wages and working hours.

Police said that on Sunday they had detained 100 people and were investigating the incident as well as claims by the workers that they were not paid.

A spokesperson for Wistron, Joyce Chow, said: “We follow the law and are supporting the authorities with their investigation.” She said the company was “deeply shocked” by the unrest. An Apple spokesperson in India declined to comment.

All India Trade Union Congress general secretary, MD Harigovind, a top Indian union official, attributed the unrest over the company to “brutal exploitation of workers and sweatshop-like conditions”.

With the intention of wooing businesses to diversify away from China and overcome Kovid-19’s impact on development, Prime Minister Narendra Modi accelerated efforts to change the country’s image as a difficult place to do business Is, promising a more predictable and open regulatory regime. , A simple corporate tax structure and incentives for targeted industries.

This year, India made it easier for some types of companies to fire workers as part of its efforts to shrink the economy and boost growth. This has also made it difficult for workers to form unions and strike. At the same time, it expanded social security programs to include many contract workers.

India has also relaxed the rules surrounding commerce in agricultural products, causing farmers to face opposition. Thousands of people have camped around the capital, New Delhi, blocking traffic and reversing new laws demanding that farmers in some areas worry that they will weaken the safety net they depend on.

India is one of the largest phone markets in the world, so manufacturers have an incentive to stay close to their customers to avoid the cost of their customers and handsets as well as import duties.

Samsung electronics Inc.

Near New Delhi is building one of the largest plants in the world. And Foxconn Technology Group has grown from a few hundred employees in Southern India to over 30,000 in recent years. More than 300 companies supplying parts for Foxconn have also established production.

The Wistron plant, which has been making iPhones for a few years, was one of the first high-profile victories of the Modi government’s efforts and was often pointed to as evidence that India could also make some of the most sophisticated phones .

Jagdish Shettar, minister of large and medium scale industries for the state of Karnataka, where the Wistron factory is located, said the unrest was unacceptable. He said that the state government would protect the rights of workers as well as companies.

“Karnataka has always welcomed foreign investors and investment and provided them a peaceful and friendly environment to do business,” he said. “We will take stringent steps to prevent such unpleasantness from recurrence.”

Pravin Rai, a political analyst at the Center for the Study of Developing Societies, a New Delhi-based think tank, said that labor violence and protests have declined in India over the past 20 years. He said he did not expect what happened at Wistron to change the views of the country’s investors.

But, if labor unrest was widespread, he said, “it could affect the country’s reputation.”

Write Vibhuti Aggarwal at [email protected] and Eric Bellman at

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