Almost 900 employees of Hindustan Antibiotics (HAL)are awaiting pending salaries. Though the Government intervened and helped clear salaries in 2016, no action has been taken after that.
The first public-sector drug manufacturing company to be set up by the Government of India, HAL was also the the first Indian company to launch a recombinant DNA product, rHU-Erythropoietin in 1993.
It is reported that the employees of cash-strapped HAL are only getting 25 per cent of their basic salary, which comes to about Rs 5,000-8,000 every month, an amount that is not enough for their survival.
According to the vice president of HAL’s labour union, the Hindustan Antibiotics Mazdoor Sangh (HAMS), while the Government has shown interest in clearing the dues of the employees, it has yet to take serious steps in that direction.
The public-sector unit has been facing a financial crisis for some time now, and has been unable to disburse the salaries to its staff for almost two years.
However, the employees have been cooperating with the management and have helped to generate production worth Rs 42 crore as on January 31, despite insufficient capital. Now, the workers are rightly demanding that the Government and the management take some serious measures to solve their issues.
With a significant section of the workforce nearing retirement, the families of these employees are having to now take up other work to help run their houses. Needless to say that the staff is losing its faith in the management and also the Government.