The Indian Army has approved the new digital design Uniform designed by NIFT New Delhi. From next year Army will be switching over to its new uniform. But the question now is who will do the bulk production of this strategic Uniform. Army says it will go for a open tender.
Ordnance Clothing Factory Avadi workers says it’s their right to get the work order for manufacturing the new Digital design strategic Uniform as they are the pioneer in Army Dress manufacturing and they question how the Govt can ignore its own Factories and favour Private Industries.
The AIDEF has already demanded to the Defence Minister that the installed capacity of the Ordnance Factories and its highly skilled workforce should not be kept idle. Today in the Avadi OCF the workers representatives after attending the Republic Day Programme assembled outside the Factory Gate near Krishna Menon statue took pledge that they will fight for getting the work order of the new uniform. After administering the pledge to the participants C. Srikumar General Secretary of AIDEF stated the following :-
On the eve of Republic Day Celebrations Ordnance Clothing Factory Workers took pledge to fight for getting the work order for the newly digitally designed Army Uniform.
The Ordnance Clothing Factory Avadi, which was established in 1961 in Tamilnadu after the Chinese aggression during the 1960’s is involved in manufacturing strategic Army Uniforms and other Troop Comfort Items required for the Indian Army and other forces during the past 60 years OCF Avadi has played a major role in designing , developing and mass manufacturing of the Army Uniform which once in 10 years used to undergo design and strategical changes to meet the requirements of the Indian Army. The Government of India have recently took a decision to convert the Ordnance Factories into 7 Corporations and all these factories have become DPSUs from 01-10-2021.
In this situation the Indian Army was in the process of designing and developing a digitally designed Combat Uniform to the Indian Army. OCF Avadi started working on that direction to design and develop a new Army Uniform to meet the special need of the soldiers in various climatical conditions and also to operate in different environment such as deserts, high – attitude places, jungles and plains. However neglecting OCF Avadi the Army in collaboration with National Institute of Fashion Technology and a Private mill developed the newly digitally designed Army Uniform and launched on 15-01-2022 the Army Day. OCF Avadi employees who are the pioneer in manufacturing Army Uniforms have protested against this decision of the Army and demanded that the manufacturing task of this Uniform should be given to them. However Army has taken a decision that OCF Avadi will not be getting this uniform directly for manufacturing on a nomination basis and that they should compete with the private sector.
Ignoring the OCF Avadi means, the factory with almost 1600 workers including 750 women workers future will be in dark. The factory has got all latest plant and machineries and NABL accredited laboratory for undertaking all type of quality test and also for mass manufacturing. All senior Army Officers and Defence Ministers who ever have visited OCF Avadi have always appreciated the talent and the skill of the workforce of OCF Avadi.
As a part of their struggle to get the work order for manufacturing the newly designed Army Uniform the workers representatives of the Factory assemble before the statue of former Defence Minister V.K. Krishnamenon who and late K.Kamaraj former Chief Minister of Tamilnadu were instrumental for establishing this factory. They took a pledge that to save the OCF avadi and its employees they will continue to struggle for getting the workload of the newly design digital Uniform of Army for mass manufacturing at OCF Avadi. Trade Union leaders of all Unions participated in the pledge taking ceremony. C. Srikumar, General Secretary of AIDEF administered the pledge to the workers representatives.