HC slaps notices on Tech Mahindra, Labour Dept

HC slaps notices on Tech Mahindra, Labour Dept
Highlights

The High Court at Hyderabad, on Monday, admitted a writ petition moved by recently retrenched employees of Tech Mahindra seeking their reinstatement. 

Hyderabad: The High Court at Hyderabad, on Monday, admitted a writ petition moved by recently retrenched employees of Tech Mahindra seeking their reinstatement.

Justice M S Ramachandra Rao, while admitting the writ petition filed by Sudhakar Suddala and three others, issued notices to Principal Secretary, Labour and Employment Department, Telangana government, Joint Commissioner of Labour (JCL), Ranga Reddy, and Tech Mahindra, directing them to give their responses within three weeks. He also permitted the petitioners to serve personal notices to Tech Mahindra in this regard.

Over the last month, more than 80 petitions had been filed with the Labour Commissioner’s office and with the Development Commissioner’s office, Special Economic Zone. The petitioners from various companies have challenged their terminations and approached Labour Commissioner office and High Court.

According to the prevailing law (Telangana Shops and Establishments Act, 1988), no employee can be terminated if there is a pending petition with the Labour Department.

Appearing on behalf of the four petitioners, senior counsel A Satyaprasad informed the court that “this was clearly violative of Sec 47(2) of Telangana Shops and Establishments Act. Since the exemption from this provision of the Act to IT companies given by the State government vide G.O. MS No. 22 has been stayed by the division bench of this High Court itself in another petition.” The senior counsel sought a direction to the JCL to ensure reinstatement of the petitioners pending conciliation proceedings.

Forum of IT Professionals (ForIT) expressed its happiness that the High Court has taken cognizance of the IT retrenchments by admitting this writ petition.

Speaking to The Hans India, Y Kiran Chandra, ForIT, said: ““We, the IT employees, need to realise that there are laws that protect our livelihoods, and we should fight to retain those rights. As per the Shops and Establishment Act of Telangana, retrenched techies should be reinstated. No other way.”

Sundeep Kumar Makthala, global president, TITA, adds: “IT companies are offering only basic pay for three months to the retrenched staff. Basic pay generally one-third of the gross pay. Three months basic pay means it is only one month take home salary. This is totally unfair.

However, Cognizant paid total salary for three months to laid off techies. We suggest, engineering graduates to focus on their core specialisation such as mechanical, civil, electronics, electricals, instead of switching over to software space.”

Satyaprasad further informed the Court that the management of Tech Mahindra company was resorting to large-scale illegal retrenchment of employees at its Hyderabad facility. He pointed out how the Human Resource Department of the company was pressurising the employees to tender their resignations and leave the company.

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