More than 300 workers took part in an all day protest camp on March 28 to highlight their determination to continue the struggle at Nestlé’s Kabirwala milk factory until all contract workers who have claimed their employment rights are given permanent jobs.
From 9 AM until 6 PM, workers set up camp in the town, signaling their commitment to continuing protest actions. The contract workers which Nestlé dismissed in violation of court orders are at last working again after being dismissed, harassed, beaten and jailed – but on short term ‘no work, no pay’ contracts, as before (see Challenging Precarious_Work @ Nestlé.Kabirwala.com). While Nestlé falsely claims to have dropped all the fabricated criminal charges it initiated against many workers, charges still hang over many of them and many are still only free on bail. While Nestlé claims it will be creating permanent jobs at the factory, the offer does not apply to casual workers who joined the union and insisted on their employment rights.
Action Committee President Ashfaq Butt stressed the peaceful character of the workers’ protest, and warned of management efforts to divide workers and to provoke clashes with contract workers who have not supported their struggle. The Kabirwala workers support the struggle of our sisters and brothers at Nestlé Panjang, Indonesia, said Bhutt, reiterating that “Together we will fight for our rights!”