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Siege of Maruti shop

Durgapur, June 12: Over 200 suspected Trinamul trade union workers today allegedly prevented employees of a Maruti showroom-cum-service station in Durgapur from joining work, demanding that 30 unskilled workers loyal to them be employed.

Officials of SWG Car World, the Maruti dealer, said they had no vacancies at the facility in Durgapur town and added that around 200 workers recommended by the INTTUC and local Trinamul leaders had been given varied jobs there, including those of mechanics and sales executives.

INTTUC activists from wards 20 and 21 led by Trinamul leader Arabinda Pal, said to be close to Durgapur municipality councillor Anindita Mukherjee, demonstrated in front of the SWG Car World showroom at Faridpur in Durgapur town around 8 this morning and prevented workers from entering. They planted INTTUC flags in front of the outlet.

The INTTUC workers sat on a dharna in front of the showroom beside NH2 for over three hours and chanted slogans against the authorities. They left around 11am, but the showroom-cum-workshop remained closed for the rest of the day as the INTTUC workers had allegedly threatened to ransack it if it was opened.

Trinamul denied the charge that the INTTUC workers had stalled work at the showroom, saying they had gone to speak to the authorities and organise a “peaceful” dharna.

“The showroom authorities had agreed to recruit 20 workers from my ward after the Lok Sabha polls but they did not keep their promise,” said Anindita, the wife of Durgapur mayor Apurba Mukherjee.

“Our workers had gone to talk to the authorities today and submit a memorandum. But no senior management official was present. Our workers sat on a peaceful dharna in front of the showroom. The authorities did not open their showroom for reasons best known to them,” she added.

Showroom general manager Rakesh Dubey said the authorities had told Trinamul leaders that there were no vacancies. “We had told the leaders that if we needed unskilled workers in the future, we would definitely consider those recommended by them. But the leaders had been putting pressure on us. We have informed the police and the deputy labour commissioner of Durgapur,” he said.

The police said the showroom authorities were yet to lodge a complaint.