BHOPAL: Amidst sagging relations between India and China because of bloody skirmishes in Galwan valley, a Chinese firm has reportedly sacked 62 workers from its operation site at Manganese Ore India Limited (MOIL) in Balaghat district.
The labourers who were working at Bharweli site in Balaghat district allege that the Chinese firm has refused to take in Indian labourers after lockdown saying that they were corona infected.
The memorandum submitted by the workers also states that they were mocked at by the company officials and asked to approach Prime Minister Narendra Modi in this matter.
‘About 62 labourers were working with China Coal CC 3 firm. All work stopped at that mine during lockdown. After lockdown, when we went there to join, the Chinese authorities didn’t allow us to work,” said, Sitesh Katothe, a worker who has been told to quit.
Katothe along with co-workers submitted a memorandum at collector’s office in Balaghat against Chinese firm on Friday. He said when they asked the company officials about joining duty, the latter replied that they had orders from “above” not to keep any Indian labourer. About 30 Chinese workers are still engaged at the same site.
According to Sitesh’s co-workers, work stopped at MOIL mines from March 24 due COVID-19 lockdown. The management resumed work from April 20 but with only Chinese staff members.
Balaghat district collector Deepak Arya confirmed that he has received the memorandum of workers but added the issue has been resolved. MOIL management has informed that production was reduced drastically due to corona. “The labourers who had submitted memorandum have been accommodated with another vendor at the same site,” said Arya.
Country’s mini Ratna, 100 years old
Manganese Ore India Limited (MOIL) is a mini Ratna PSU that operates 10 mines. Out of these, six are located in Maharashtra while four are in Balaghat district. All these mines are about 100 years old. The Balaghat mine is the largest mine of the company, which produces one of the best quality manganese ores in the country and is also the deepest underground manganese mine in Asia.