Trade unions express solidarity with sentenced pricol workers

Trade union representatives from HMS, AICCTU, CITU, AITUC, AIUTUC, INTUC, LPF and WPTUC expressed solidarity in a meeting held on December 10th 2015. Through the solidarity press statement signed at the end of the meeting, the unions have linked the persecution of 8 pricol workers who have been given a double life sentence and 37 jailed maruti workers who have still not been given bail to the ongoing labour reforms agenda being unleashed on the country.

In 2007, two unions namely Pricol Employees Trade Union and Kovai District Pricol Workers Trade Union were registered and affiliated to AICCTU. According to AICCTU, since 2007, the management has been relentless in not recognizing the union and have accused AICCTU and the registered trade unions of leading violent struggles. In 19th December 2009, 42 workers were dismissed. The prosecution has alleged that the workers and AICCTU leadership under Comrade S.K Kumarasamy hatched a conspiracy plan, through which, the Vice President of HR, Mr. Roy George was killed. In the order given on 3rd December, 2015, the judge has cited lack of evidence in the conspiracy case, but has given double life sentences to 8 pricol workers who have been accused of murder.

The unions have highlighted the additional humal toll in the prosecution, where Manikandan, a worker had committed suicide and further wife of one of the jailed worker Sampathkumar, has committed suicide recently. The workers have called the excessive punishment only exposes the pro capitalistic character of the institution and have vowed to continue their fight for justice. The unions have expressed solidarity with the ongoing struggles of the workers and have called for support from workers and progressive movements towards the fight for justice.

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