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Aurangabad Industrial Tribunal upheld the Wockhardt management right to transfer its employees

The aurangabad Industrial Tribunala has upheld the Wockhardt management right to transfer its workmen on the basis of terms of appointment and settlement executed between management and workers union. The transfer of workmen was challenged by the workers union.

While refusing to interfere and granting any relief in case of transfer of 36 workmen, court directed the management to accommodate 18 workmen at Ankleshwar near Aurangabad on humanitarian grounds.

The workers union and the company management had entered into a settlement on August 5, 2013, which was to remain in effect from January 1, 2013 to December 31, 2016. In October 2016, the workers’ union expressed its intention to terminate the settlement and went ahead with 32 demands. When the management of Wockhardt Ltd’s plant in Chikalthana could not accept the demands, the union reached out to the conciliation officer. As the union and the management could not arrive at settlement, the conciliation officer referred the matter to an Industrial tribunal.

Meanwhile, production activities at the Chikalthana plant came to a halt by July 2017. Instead of retrenching the employees, the management decided to transfer 36 of them to Waluj and Shendra units in Aurangabad district  and 18 to Baddi in Himachal Pradesh. Instead of joining at their new postings, all the employees returned to Chikalthana plant and demanded that their transfers be withdrawn but in vain.

The union filed a complaint of unfair labour practices at the industrial Tribunala stating that the management was trying to break the union by means of transfers which court declined to accept and rejected holding that management has a right to transfer its workers.