The Federations of Defence Civilian Employees (AIDEF, INDWF & BPMS) issued a strike notice on 04/08/2020 for commencing an Indefinite strike from 12/10/2020 against the government decision to Corporatise the Ordnance Factories. When the preparations for the strike was in high peak, the Chief Labour Commissioner(C) intervened and convened a conciliation meeting on 09/10/2020 with Ministry of Defence and the three Recognised Federations. A settlement was reached in the conciliation proceedings according to which under Sec.22 of ID Act 1947, the Unions will defer their strike and under Sec. 33 of the ID Act 1947 the Ministry of Defence, will not go ahead with its decision of converting the Ordnance Factories in to a corporation.
However the Federations are of the strong view that while they are sincerely implementing the settlement, the Ministry of Defence as Employer is blatantly violating the settlement. C.Srikumar General Secretary of AIDEF when asked by www.indianpsu.com what all are the violations the Defence Ministry has committed, he mentioned the following violations on the part of MoD.
1) The KPMG Consultant are asked to proceed with their work and submit their recommendations on the modalities for implementation of Corporatisation of OFB. The consultant were permitted to visit all the Ordnance Factories to make the study.
2) The Government has written to the ESIC to take over the Ordnance Factory hospitals and the ESIC teams were asked to visit various Ordnance Factories.
3) The HRD/Education Ministry was asked to take over the Ordnance Factory Schools and their team were allowed to visit the Ordnance Factory Schools.
4) Without informing the alternative proposals given by the Federations to continue the Ordnance Factories in the present Government setup itself, to the EGOM, the Secretary(DP) informed the EGOM about the steps taken to corporatize the Ordnance Factories and a cabinet note is under preparation.
5) Without informing the alternative proposals given by the Federations to continue the Ordnance Factories in the present Govt. setup itself, to the Parliamentary Standing Committee for Defence, the Secretary(DP) informed the Parliamentary Standing Committee for Defence about the steps taken to corporatize the Ordnance Factories, which forced the Committee to caution the Govt to weigh the pros and cons of before Corporatisation in favour of OFB.
6) Details of surplus lands and unused lands are asked from the Ordnance Factories may be to sell out these lands on the eve of Corporatisation.
7) All the employees related pending service matters, such as cadre restructuring, piece work correlation, compassionate appointment etc., are being unattended or returned back on the plea of Corporatisation. 7 members posts of the OFB is not filled up making the OFB ineffective.
Already the Federations have lodged a complaint/plaint against the Secretary(DP) and the DDP officials to the Chief Labour Commissioner(C) on 31/03/2021 and have demanded for action under ID Act 1947. After receipt of this letter the CLC(c) has now convened a Joint Meeting with MoD and the Federations on 22/04/2021. On receipt of this call letter from the CLC(C), the Federations immediately on 10/04/2021 shooted a letter to CLC(C) asking him to inform them about the action taken by the CLC(C) on their complaint dtd. 31/03/2021, against Secretary(DP) so that they can come prepared for a fruitful discussion.
The tug off war between the employees of Ordnance Factories and the Ministry of Defence is continuing. Neither the Govt. is accepting the demand of the Federations nor the Federations are accepting the policy decision of the Government. How far the CLC(C) will be able to prevail upon both the parties is a million dollar question. We have to wait till 22/04/2021.