430 workers accept GM India’s final separation package, rest still to decide

The Indian subsidiary of US Carmaker General Motors saw over 28% or 430 of 1550 protesting workers opting for the Voluntary Separation Scheme. The deadline for accepting the separation offer drew to a close on the 30th of June.

However, with over 70% of the employees yet to decide on the offer, the carmaker has extended the VSS scheme by four more days.

Beyond the 5th of July, the company will revise its offer downwards to 95 days per year of service.

Over 400 of them were the non-unionised workers who had moved to Talegaon, Pune plant post the Halol, Gujarat plant closure of the US carmaker. And only 30 of them were from the unionized Pune plant.

GM India claimed that several employees had indicated their interest in taking up the separation offer, which encouraged the company to extend the scheme by four more days. However, people close to the protesting workers say over 90% of the unionized workforce are still in favour of retaining their job and have not taken up the offer.

“A substantial number of employees have accepted the company’s separation package. The company has extended the deadline until Sunday, July 4, as a further number of employees have indicated they intend to sign up. From July 5, the current VSS will be withdrawn, and the company will offer a revised VSS, based on 95 days per year of service,” GM India spokesperson said

“The Unionised employees have rejected the package,” said one of the workers requesting anonymity.

The workers are expected to continue their fight in various courts over multiple issues emanating from the dispute.

Earlier in June, GM India had reached out to individual employees and had extended a separation package of 110 days of salary for each completed year of service instead of the 75-day settlement plan offered earlier. This offer was 50% higher than its previous offer to the employees.

Having stopped production at the Talegaon plant in December of 2020, GM India has been at loggerheads with the workers over the separation package, stalling the closure of the Talegaon Pune plant and exit of the carmaker from India.

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