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Police Use Batons to Disperse Honda Employees

July 26, 2005
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Pictures streaming out of Gurgaon, India, on June 25 showed hundreds of striking Honda employees dispersed by police using batons, and dozens of workers and policemen with bleeding injuries.
The demonstrators are employees of Honda Motorcycles and Scooters India Ltd. (HMSI), the wholly owned Indian unit of Japan’s Honda Motor Co. Law enforcement officials say police responded with force after workers pelted them with stones and burned a vehicle.
HMSI employs more than 2,000 workers who produce the Eterno and Activa scooters and the Unicorn motorcycle. Published reports say striking employees were demanding the reinstatement of colleagues who had been suspended or dismissed from the Gurgaon plant in May. Gurgaon is in the northern Haryana state, which is also home to the factories of Suzuki Motor Corp. and Hero Honda Motors Ltd. Japan’s Honda also owns 26% of Hero Honda, India’s biggest motorcycle maker.
An HMSI spokesperson told Reuters the company has suffered a production loss of 2.5 billion rupees since unrest began. He said HMSI produced an average of 2,000 scooters and motorcycles a day until production dropped to a low of 400 units a day during May and June. Production is now at 1,000 units a day, he said.

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