The Maruti Suzuki Workers Union (MSWU) on Monday appealed to all workers organisations, trade unions, democratic rights' and civil rights organisations and mass organisations as well as democratic minded individuals to come out in protest and solidarity against what was described as "the most brutal repression."
Through a release, MSWU said that since March 24 they had organised protest rallies, hunger strikes and sent deputations seeking reinstatement of 546 permanent and 1800 contract workers terminated by the company. It charged that the State police have so far arrested 147 protestors and issued non-bailable warrants (NBWs) against 66 others. One such protest was being organised outside the residence of Haryana Industries and Commerce Minister, Randip Singh Surjewala in Kaithal.
After using the provisions of section 144 CrPC, the Kaithal district administration on May 18 deployed a heavy posse of armed police personnel in riot gear, to prevent a protest rally the next day. At least 96 protestors were arrested from the protest site and four were picked up from other places. Next day, those proceeding to support the protest were stopped at various places in Kaithal.
When the MSWU activists gathered near Pyoda village outside the city limits and organised a march to seek the release of those arrested, a police contingent stopped them on the road next to Mr Surjewala’s residence.