Staff Correspondent

HASSAN: Over 1,600 women working at Himmat Singh Textile Factory near Hassan staged a dharna on Tuesday demanding an increase in wages and better facilities. When the management barred them from agitating on the factory premises, they went back to their hostel and continued their protest. .

The workers are provided accommodation in a hostel here and are transported to the factory by bus. The women claim that they are finding it difficult to manage with the Rs. 3,000 a month they earn as wages. Since April, the hostel deduction had been increased from Rs. 850 to Rs. 1,150 a month. Assistant General Manager (Human Resources) Krishna said over the phone from Bangalore that there was no truth in the allegation. The board and lodging charges come to about Rs. 2,000 a month per person, he said. A sum of Rs. 1,150 is deducted from the wages. Charges were hiked due to increase in prices of commodities.

On women workers

Mr. Krishna said there are 1,600 women workers in the factory and that the company had increased wages from April 2010. The workers were getting minimum wages, PF, and were also covered under group insurance.