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Echo of violence: Wistron shifts production to other plants in India, China

Though Apple contract-manufacturer Wistron has pegged at Rs 437 crore the losses suffered at its riot-hit plant in Narasapura, 60 kms from...

Though Apple contract-manufacturer Wistron has pegged at Rs 437 crore the losses suffered at its riot-hit plant in Narasapura, 60 kms from Bengaluru, Karnataka, the fear is that it may be higher than that.

The reason for this misgiving is that the violence has occurred just before the peak Christmas season and supplies have been hit.

In a widely expected move, Wistron has suspended the work at its violence-tarred Narasapura plant. 

Sources say that plant will remain closed for two weeks. The company will do everything it can to restore production at the Narasapura site as soon as possible to protect the benefits and rights of its employees, Wistron had earlier said.

It may be recalled that on Saturday night, a protest by about 2,000 workers at Wistron's Narasapura factory, ended in mass violence and looting after the night shift, apparently over pay cuts, with furniture and factory assembly units destroyed. Thousands of iPhones were stolen in the welter of violence and vandalism. Attempts were even made to set fire to vehicles.

Wistron's Peenya plant to shoulder more production

Wistron, for its part, said the riot at the plant in Narasapura was caused by unidentified outside instigators who broke into the factory and sabotaged the facility.

Wistron's production lines in India are focused on assembling relatively affordable iPhones with the iPhone SE accounting for the majority of production.

But from the the second half of this year they have rolled out the smaller iPhone 12 models.

Since smaller iPhone 12 models have a huge demand the company has quickly shifted its production to its other plant in India (at Peenya, near Bengaluru, Karnataka). Wistron were producing iPhone SE models from here since 2017. But were discontinued in 2019.

Wistron's plant in Kunshan (China) is also being assigned some extra production.

Wistron officials are working round the clock to ensure that the larger impact of the violence at Narasapura plant is limited on its overall output.

Apple sending its auditors for its own probe

Meanwhile, Apple has said it was investigating whether Wistron had flouted supplier guidelines. A Reuters report said that Apple was sending its staff and auditors to the site and was cooperating with police in their investigation. 

Apple’s supplier guidelines make it a must for third-party staffing agencies to pay workers and provide them other benefits as per rules and on time.

It is reported that Apple will examine whether there was any disparity in wages agreed and paid to the staff. "It will also check whether overtime by the workers was accounted for and they were paid according to norms."

Via: Taipei Times



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