Workmen of the automobile giant Renault-Nissan company had approached the Madras High Court under Article 226 alleging the employer company of non-compliance to covid safety protocol in its manufacturing unit located in Sriperumbudur in TamilNadu.
To curb the raging wildfire of Covid-19 infections the TamilNadu state government has observed lockdown in the state with exemptions to ‘continuous process industries’ and those engaged in manufacturing essential commodities listed under the G.O(ms)No.348 and G.O(ms)No.377. As per the given G.Os the companies are required to adhere to covid safety protocol in the workplace to avail the exemption from lockdown.
The workmen also challenged the G.O which recognised the respondent company as a continuous process industry to be exempted from lockdown.
‘The employer company cannot avail of the exemption to the lockdown without complying with the attendant conditions of maintaining covid protocol, particularly social distancing’, the workmen argued before the Hon’ble Bench comprising chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Senthil Kumar Ramamoorthy. They further contended that it is not possible to maintain Social distance given the procedure adopted by the employer in the production, mainly in the assembly line.
On the other hand the company denying the allegations made by its employees said it is open for any surprise or other inspection by the appropriate authorities to ascertain whether the company breached the covid safety protocol.
Taking note of the Workmen’s plea, the Hon’ble Madras High Court ordered inspection of Renault-Nissan’s manufacturing unit in sriperumbudur. The Court further said that the distancing norms have to be maintained without exception, while urging the parties to resolve the dispute amicably.