TINSUKIA: At a time when the government insisting on adhering to the lockdown guidelines strictly in the wake of COVID-19 outbreak, the Doomdooma-based Hindustan Unilever Limited (HUL) has attempted to resume its production despite stiff protest from its labour union. The HUL procured a magisterial order from the Tinsukia district administration on 26.3.2020 which permitted HUL to manufacture essential commodities.
Armed with the order vide number TRP.5/2020/PT-1/62 of 26.3.2020 issued to Satish Yelamanchili, factory manager HUL, the management has been forcing the workers to join the factory since Thursday, which the labour union opposed. The union contended that the HUL is a manufacturer of cosmetic items like toothpaste, cream, shampoo and face wash and none of these items belong to essential commodities as mandated under COVID-19 requirement. The union alleged that the HUL management, by misinterpreting the order, planned to resume production. On the other hand, the Tinsukia district administration ought to have sought clarification from the HUL in respect of manufacturing specific essential items before issuance of the order.
HUL HR Manager Dhiraj Singh, when contacted, told this correspondent that the HUL in the present situation of COVID-19 lockdown contemplated to manufacture only toothpaste as that was the only essential item while shutting down the other industrial units. When asked whether it would manufacture sanitizer-like items for which the Modi government had given nod on priority basis, Singh categorically said no.