Head of Italian subsidiary beaten to death in Greater Noida (Lead)

September 23rd, 2008 - 1:46 am ICT by IANS  

Greater Noida, Sep 23 (IANS) L.K. Choudhary, the managing director of an Indian subsidiary of an Italy-based company in the industrial area of Greater Noida, adjacent to the national capital, was beaten to death by irate retrenched workers Monday.Choudhary, heading auto components manufacturer Cerlikon-Graziano Transmissions India Pvt Ltd, was lynched at around 12.30 p.m. when about 150 workers who had been retrenched barged into the factory premises in block 14 of Udyog Kendra in Greater Noida.

Earlier in the day, factory sources said, a mob brutally beat over 50 workers with iron rods, hockey sticks and heavy axles, resulting in heavy bloodshed. Five workers sustained fractures in skulls, legs and arms, they said.

As many as 34 employees had to be admitted in the intensive care unit (ICU), Kailash Hospital administrator K.K. Sharma said.

An Italian delegation of six senior managers in the production wing was also manhandled by the mob.

“The company had expelled about 240 casual workers in January for non-performance. While we re-inducted 70 men, the rest had been striking in front of the factory for the past six months. Although the senior management was willing to take them back after some time, they indulged in extreme unrest and resorted to the blood bath with our employees,” said Rakesh Kumar Singh, an assistant manager with the HR department.

“The men in the age group of 20-35, armed with iron rods and hockey sticks, entered the premises and attacked our security guards at the gate and then workers. They simply hit them with whatever they had. Even as this happened, many of them entered the production area through the reception gates, breaking window panes,” he said.

When Choudhary, came out from his first floor room to talk with the vandalising men for a compromise, six men surrounded him from all sides, first abusing him, then having heated arguments and finally hammering him to death, company sources said.

Choudhary had joined Cerlikon Graziano Transmission in 1998. An engineer with a degree from the IIT Kanpur, he had an excellent track record in his professional career.

He is survived by his wife Ratna, a lecturer with the Kirori Mal College in New Delhi, and son Keshav.

Police official Brijesh Kumar Gautam said: “The clash occurred in the company over a dispute on re-employment of retrenched workers. We are looking into the incident.”

Narendra Singh Gangwar, a 40-year-old worker who was admitted at the Kailash Hospital, said: “The men simply entered the factory and started hitting everyone with iron rods. I suffered fractures in arm and leg and an injury in the head.”

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