New Delhi: Maruti Suzuki India (MSI) is planning to offer low-cost houses to about 5,000 employees as it tries to walk the extra mile to improve relations with its workers.

The company, which was hit by the worst violence in its history that killed one senior official in July at its Manesar plant, has already agreed to hike salaries of its workers by an average Rs 18,000 per month, which will be spread over three years.

"We will set up an Employees Cooperation Committee to look after various issues, mainly accommodation related, affecting the workers and their relationships with the management. The committee is likely to be established by December this year," Maruti Suzuki India (MSI) Chief Operating Officer (Administration) S Y Siddiqui told media.

The company is planning to offer low-cost houses to about 5,000 employees and the committee will be responsible for this development, he added.

"However, till the committee is formed, the company will take the initiative in acquiring land and starting preliminary work. Once the committee is in place, we will hand over the responsibility to them," Siddiqui said.

He, however, declined to share how much land the company is looking to acquire and what could be the investment size.

"By middle of October, we will finalise the location, how much land to be acquired, investment size and other details, "he added.
Siddiqui said the flats will be offered on self financing basis to workers, who will receive easy loans from financial institutions with the help of MSI.

"At the end, the workers will own the flats... These will be offered to both Gurgaon and Manesar plant staff," he added.

So far, two such housing societies have been developed for MSI's workers. In 1991, 'Maruti Vihar' at Chakkarpur in Gurgaon was developed and about 1,100 employees were offered accommodations.

A similar housing society 'Maruti Kunj' was launched later in 1996 at Bhondsi near Manesar for about 1,000 staff.

In July, MSI's Manesar plant witnessed violence and arson that killed one senior executive and left injured nearly 100 others. The company later declared a lockout for one month.

Last week, the company had reached a wage settlement agreement with its workers at Gurgaon plant, under which the employees would get an average salary hike of Rs 18,000 per month with retrospective effect from April this year.

However, in absence of any union at present at the Manesar plant following the violence, workers there will have to give individual acknowledgment to their superiors. With a two-third majority of their opinion, the company will take a call for the Manesar plant workers.

The company took four months and 40 meetings to reach to the agreement. A cross-functional team, comprising six members each from union and management was formed to deliberate on the wage settlement.


Latest News  from Business News Desk