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Ford India yet to announce plan for workers affected by closure

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Ford India yet to announce plan for workers affected by closure
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Chennai: According to a union official, Ford India Private Ltd has yet to announce its plans for the workers who will be affected by the closure of its two plants — two in Chennai and one in Sanand, Gujarat.

"On Monday, the Sanand plant management had a discussion with us. They wanted to know whether we have any questions on the company's decision to close down the plants," Sanand workers' union General Secretary Nayan Kateshiya told IANS.

Ford India on September 9 made the announcement that it would cease vehicle assembly in Sanand by the end of 2021 and vehicle and engine manufacturing in Chennai by the end of 2022.

As of now, Ford has four manufacturing facilities in India, including vehicle assembly plants in Chennai and Sanand. Ford India has decided to keep the engine plant in Sanand open while closing the others.

"We had asked them about the future of the engine plant workers and how long it would be operational. We also asked them about the future of the plants that are to be closed, whether they would be sold/leased out," Kateshiya added.

According to him, the management had no answer and said they would revert.

"Work on completing the assembly of the cars that are remaining on the production lines is being done. The engine plant is running."

Ford's quit India decision will result in an uncertain future for about 5,300 employees - workers and staff, Union officials said. According to Union officials, Ford India's Chennai plant has about 2,700 associates (permanent workers) and about 600 staff.

"In Sanand, the number of workers will be about 2,000," Kateshiya said.

Meanwhile, the Chennai Ford Employees Union (CFEU) in a statement said it does not accept Ford India's decision of closing down the plants. The CFEU has requested the company management to ensure jobs for the workers at the Chennai plant with the proposed buyer of the factory.

The company management is having a meeting with CFEU officials on Tuesday.

Ford India had said more than 500 employees at the Sanand engine plant, which produces engines for export, and about 100 employees supporting parts distribution and customer service, also will continue to support Ford's business in India. According to Ford India, about 4,000 employees are expected to be affected by its decision.

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