Voicing their concerns and staging a massive protest against the high handedness by the state government in the pretext of raids and inspection, nearly 9000 employees from Kitex group, the private sector company has decided to offer full support to the Managing Director Sabu Jacob, who had recently decided to withdraw from the Rs.3500 crore project from Kerala and shift to other states.
The 30-minute protest saw a massive show of strength with nearly 9000 employees participating raising placards with ‘Save Kitex’ written on it. The employees urged the state government to intervene in the matter and ensure that the interference from the various departments is ended. The employees’ protest comes in the wake of allegations that the Kitex group was violating labour laws. The Labour Department had issued a notice to the company while a group of MLAs, led by P.T. Thomas, had levelled charges of environmental pollution. Kitex Group chairman Sabu M. Jacob accused the government agencies of hounding the company and holding nearly a dozen checks on the premises in June without intimation. He threatened to withdraw from making investments to the tune of ₹3,500 crore in two apparel parks and an industrial park in the State. However, the Industries Department reached out to him. Industries Minister P. Rajeeve said that surprise raids were not part of the government policy and Mr. Jacob’s grievances would be addressed.
Kitex Garments, established 26 years ago, has a strong presence in markets like the U.S. The company, with an annual turnover of around ₹1,000 crore, has complained of obstacles being raised by the local panchayat over the years. Meanwhile, nine states including Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, and Gujarat has sent their letter of acceptance to Kitex MD so that the company can invest in their respective states.