After a five-hour conciliatory process initiated by the Central Labour Commissioner, Ordnance Factory Board workers decided to defer the indefinite strike scheduled to begin on October 12. The Department of Defence Production demanded more time to complete the conciliatory process, but agreed that it will abide by the provisions of the Industrial Disputes Act that that there should not be any change in the conditions of service during a conciliatory process.
The demand of the trade unions was that the Centre should drop the plan to corporatise the OFB. The Department of Defence Production has been maintaining that corporatisation is a policy decision of the Centre and it does mean that the factories under the OFB will be privatised.
The minutes of the conciliatory meeting said that “after prolonged discussions, it is agreed that since the matter is sensitive and require discussions and deliberations at the highest level of government” a meeting of the Department of Defence Production secretary and the trade unions will be convened.
The federations said in a joint statement that after considering the statements of officials representing the Department of Defence Production, they felt that there’s a need to hold more discussions with higher officials. “So we have decided to defer the indefinite strike,” said general secretary of All India Defence Employees Federation C Srikumar.