Rundown of Indian Press Coverage of Maruti Suzuki Riot & Lockdown: Talk of Conspiracies and Outside Influences

Ronnie Schreiber
by Ronnie Schreiber

The major Indian news operations are pretty much flooding the zone in covering the riot and lockdown at Maruti Suzuki’s Manesar plant. Besides whatever labor unrest there was at play in the Manesar factory riot, internal politics within the state of Haryana or competition with Gujurat state may have had something to do with it, with accusations of conspiracies and outside influences. Here is a rundown of the news.

Financial Express:

Maruti Suzuki Chairman: Plant will not reopen until investigation is complete and corrective steps taken to prevent reoccurrence. Production will not be moved from Manesar.

Manesar lockdown cost: $47 million/month. Production cannot practically be shifted to other plants.

Gujarat Chief Minister Modi, already on trade mission to Japan, will meet with top Suzuki brass. The Manesar riot in Haryana state will no doubt be discussed as will the state of Gujarat’s desire to be the location of new Maruti Suzuki factories.

The Manesar violence will delay Maruti Suzuki’s launch of their new 800 cc small car, more fuel efficient and more expensive than their best selling Alto.

Six sarpanches (village chiefs) near Manesar plant allege conspiracy: “The incident of fire and killing of a senior executive by workers is a part of a larger conspiracy to shift the plant from here. Gurgaon gives the maximum revenue to the state and some people might be envious of this and might be behind the incident.” Gurgaon is the industrial hub of Haryana state.

The Economic Times:

Indian Gov’t Minister: Violence at Maruti Suzuki in Manesar “will send a very wrong message to the entire world,” about doing business in India.

Haryana state Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda will meet with Maruti Suzuki Managing Director and CEO Shinzo Nakanishi to address company’s concerns.

The Times of India:

Maruti Suzuki’s CEO, Shinzo Nakanishi, takes hard line on labor violence. “There is no compromise on violence. When violence happens, we should not have any consideration for any kind of compromise.”

Maruti Suzuki chairman RC Bhargava unsure when Manesar plant will reopen and resume production. Denies that it will be closed. “How long it will take? 10 days? 15 days? I don’t know.”

Bhargava: “ Talks of Maruti unit moving out of Manesar is an absolute fiction … We are not moving the plant out of Manesar. Maruti is flag-bearer of industrialization in Haryana.”

Hindustan Times:

Nakanishi takes personal responsibility for “bad dot” in Maruti Suzuki history. “It is the biggest challenge in my career. I have put a bad dot in the company’s history.”

Maruti Suzuki chairman Bhargava on violence, “Personally, it is an experience that has left me shattered.”

Haryana state government calls Manesar plant lockdown “appropriate”, says union workers were “influenced from outside”.

Bhargava calls for Haryana state to expedite investigation. Maruti Suzuki will also conduct internal inquiry.

Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM):

SIAM president condemns violence as “totally unprovoked and barbaric.”

Ronnie Schreiber edits Cars In Depth, a realistic perspective on cars & car culture and the original 3D car site. If you found this post worthwhile, you can dig deeper at Cars In Depth. If the 3D thing freaks you out, don’t worry, all the photo and video players in use at the site have mono options. Thanks for reading – RJS

Ronnie Schreiber
Ronnie Schreiber

Ronnie Schreiber edits Cars In Depth, the original 3D car site.

More by Ronnie Schreiber

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 2 comments
  • Modelt1918 Modelt1918 on Jul 22, 2012

    Do we know why this happened exactly? Is the management style at Suzuki not compatible with the Indian culture? How about the culture of India? Will automobile companies or any manufacturer of products have to adhere to a new style of management that will only work in India?

  • Camchennai Camchennai on Jul 23, 2012

    Strike and Riot is not something new to Maruti management, they have these type of issues for several years now, however this time it turned very violent causing human loss!! There are lot automobile and other manufacturing companies running without any union chaos, however this particular factory of Marui has seen problems for more than 2 years now, so being an outsider i would attribute this to the management, either they have handled sensitive issue insensitively nor they haven't given a shit. This particular place where the factory is located is an industrial area and there are lot factories in and around Maruti, not sure why only Maruti has these issues often. Down south Hyundai factory also sees some strikes often, however either the management nor the local government steps in at right time and solves the crisis. If we do deep dive analysis its end up in new union formation and de-recognition of existing union leading to these strikes.

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