Zydus shuts down one unit, agrees to keep the other safe

Gangtok, 25 Mar:

Workers of two manufacturing units of the pharma company Zydus carried out a protest today demanding proper safety measures against COVID-19 and shutdown of one unit since it does not manufacture lifesaving drugs.

workers of Zydus Healthcare unit at Baghey Khola demanded proper safety measure alleging that not enough was being done in the unit. Following the protest and meeting between the SDM, SDPO, other officials, workers' representatives and the management, the company agreed to the 7-point demand of the workers.

Workers' representative, Harka Bahadur Chhetri informed that their demands included provision of more hand sanitizers in the unit, constitution of a committee to oversee that all measures were in place, sanitization of buses, provision two masks to a worker per day, only 18-19 workers in one bus to ensure social distancing, distancing in canteen and work station, provision of creche and breast feeding facilities for women workers, paid holiday for workers coming from West Bengal or outside the state.

"We are manufacturing hydroxychloroquine which is being used to treat COVID-19 patients so we have to work," said Mr Chhetri.

At the Zydus Wellness unit at Mamring, South Sikkim, the management decided to temporarily shut down the unit as demanded by the workers since the unit does not produce lifesaving drugs.

HR Manager, Manjit Singh and General Manager, Hecal Rathore informed that they have decided to temporarily shut the unit down and give paid leave to the workers.

However, they also said that the government has directed pharma companies to produce hand sanitizers so if there are those who are interested to come to work, they will be provided proper facilities.