Violence-hit Apple supplier Wistron removes VP overseeing India operations
New Delhi, Dec 19: Apple''s contract manufacturer Wistron on Saturday removes its vice-president Vincent Lee, who was heading operations in India after finding fault in the process of wage payment during its internal investigation.
The Taiwanese electronics services major admitted the mistakes at its end and apologised to the workers.
"We are removing the Vice President who oversees our business in India. We are also enhancing our processes and restructuring our teams to ensure these issues cannot happen again," Wistron said in a statement.
Meanwhile, Apple said that it has placed Wistron on probation and it will not receive any new business from the US-based company before corrective actions are completed.
"Apple employees and independent auditors hired by Apple have been working around the clock to investigate the issues which occurred at Wistron''s Narasapura facility," Apple said in a statement.
Workers at Wistron Corporation''s manufacturing facility in Narasapura Industrial Area in Kolar district near Bengaluru went on rampage last week over non-payment of their wages.
Political parties in Karnataka have sought a thorough probe into the violence at Wistron''s iPhone manufacturing plant in Kolar district as they expressed concerns about its possible impact on the investment friendly image of the state.
"The safety and wellbeing of our team members is always our top priority and a core value for everyone at Wistron. Since the unfortunate events at our Narasapura facility we have been investigating and have found that some workers were not paid correctly, or on time.
"We deeply regret this and apologize to all of our workers. This is a new facility and we recognize that we made mistakes as we expanded," the statement said.
Industry bodies India Cellular and Electronics Association and ELCINA backed Wistron and called for those who went on rampage at the factory.
"Some of the processes we put in place to manage labour agencies and payments need to be strengthened and upgraded. We are taking immediate action to correct this, including disciplinary action," Wistron said.
Wistron has increased its headcount from 2,000 in mid of this year to around 9,000 recently.
"Our top priority is to ensure all workers are fully compensated immediately and we are working hard to achieve that," Wistron said.
The company has established an employee assistance program for workers at the facility. We also set up a 24-hour grievance hotline in Kannada, Telugu, Tamil, Hindi and English to ensure all workers can voice any concerns they may have anonymously.
"We are deeply committed to our business and employees in India. We are working diligently on corrective actions to ensure this does not happen again," Wistron said.