HUL reaches settlement with thermometer factory’s former workers

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Chennai, March 9 (IANS) Consumer products major Hindustan Unilever Ltd (HUL) and Pond’s HLL ex-Mercury Employees Welfare Association arrived at a compensation settlement, a company statement said on Wednesday.

In the statement, HUL said a memorandum of settlement was reached with the workers association representing the interests of the former workers at the company’s thermometer plant at Kodaikanal in Tamil Nadu.

“The memorandum of settlement reached was recorded in an order passed by the Hon’ble Madras High Court. The settlement has been entered into on humanitarian considerations to put an end to this long-standing matter pending in the court for several years and also is in keeping with the suggestion of the Hon’ble Madras High Court,” HUL said.

As part of the agreement, HUL, with an objective to ensure long term wellbeing of its former workers, has agreed to provide ex gratia payments to 591 former workers/association members and their families towards livelihood enhancement projects and skill enhancement programmes. The association, on its part, will withdraw its case against the company in the high court.

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According to the statement, HUL has been engaging with the former workers’ representatives to reach an amicable settlement for the past several years.

“In the last two years, the company has had multiple meetings with the former workers’ representatives to resolve this issue in a mutually satisfactory manner,” it said, quoting the employees association president S.A.Mahindra Babu as welcoming “the actions taken by HUL to bring these negotiations to a satisfactory closure”.

“We are pleased with all the terms of the agreement which will help to ensure the long-term health and well-being of the factory’s former workers. We now consider this issue to be fully resolved and have no more grievance against the Company in this regard,” said Babu.

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