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1. Analyze the case and answer the questions given below. (10 Marks) Mumbai Textiles was founded by Naroji Baba during the 1850s. He was patriotic and wanted to stop the export of raw cotton to England and develop the textile manufacturing capability of India. He also actively supported the Indian freedom struggle. After his death in the 1940s, the responsibility was passed on to his son Karoji Baba. Unlike his father, Karoji was aligned to the capitalist views of US / UK and dissociated from freedom fighting. The unions, who until then had peaceful relations with the management, comprehended the changed approach of the management and become more aggressive to realize their rights. In 1945 one of the shop floor workers was slapped by the production in-charge for negligence in the job. The employee suffered serious injuries and was hospitalized. The labour welfare officer refused to get involved in the incident and aggravated the situation by commenting that the erring employee was solely responsible for the situation. He even informed the union members that the company would not bear any cost beyond the primary medical treatment expenses. The incident led to serious friction between the union and the management, and the union members called for a strike in the factory. Karoji responded that as daily wage earners, the employees would not survive if they did not get their salaries, and it was to their own peril, if they wanted to go ahead with the strike. The strike went on for more than two months and the company suffered severe losses. The company declared lock-out, and filed an application for the closure of the unit. Questions:
a. Analyze the industrial relations scenario in the above mentioned company. Where do you think things went wrong? b. What could have been a better way to handle the situation?
2. Read the following case and answer the questions given below. (10 Marks) Harish, a workman in the fire and safety department at a manufacturing unit of a factory was addicted to alcohol. He had been warned many times for coming to work in an inebriated state. He had been served charge sheet and awarded punishment. Still there was no improvement in his chronic absenteeism. He was also deep in debt and hardly took more than few hundred rupees as his take home salary. Instead of resorting to progressive punishment, the management with the help of a social worker, counseled him and also made house visits and contacted his family members. Finally he was sent to a hospital which specialized in alcohol de-addiction. His three months of hospitalization was considered as special leave with wages. The company bore the entire hospital expenses. After discharge from hospital, Harish resumed work. There were no more complaints about him. His performance was satisfactory. During the regular visits, the social worker received satisfactory reports about Harish from his family members. In fact they were grateful to the company for saving their family from certain destitution. Questions: 1. In these fast paced times, is it possible for any management to stretch that far to reform a person? 2. Relate this case with an industrial relations approach theory.
Lucas Spinning Mills Limited was established in Pondicherry in 1918 for
manufacturing yarn and supplying it to mills in & around the city. The company was initially founded with limited capacity and in a period of one decade it became one of
the largest yarn mills in Coimbatore. The founder of the company Murali Iyengar, was a follower of the Gandhian philosophy and believed in a paternalistic approach towards the employees, because of which there was little scope for grievance. However, after some time, owing to the influence of politicians and freedom fighters, the trade union movement picked up in Coimbatore. Due to pressure from other units, two trade unions were formed in Super Spinning Mills, one with the support of the communists and the other with the help of Indian National Congress. The leaders of these unions were interested to increase the membership towards their unions. To do so, they began to rouse the anger of the employees against the “injustice” being done to them. Iyengar, in spite of his best efforts, could not convince the unions to maintain harmonious industrial relations. The union leaders to maintain their own selfish ends, started to create industrial unrest even on minor issues, leading to the loss of production. There were strikes lasting from five days to one month over a span of two years. On each of these occasions, the management took the help of leading freedom fighters for conciliation and arbitration, and was able to reduce unrest. a) Critically analyze the case and identify the problems faced by the management b) Would you suggest any other approaches for resolving the problem?
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