Communist leader linked to vandalization of Karnataka Apple Unit, Ravish Kumar comes to defend him

The quaint town of Kolar and the adjoining Narasapura are hitting global headlines for all the wrong reasons. In 2007, Vemagal in Kolar had experienced the worst ethnic clashes that had spread to Narasapura.

Now, it is again in the news for the riot that has destroyed Karnataka’s first iPhone maker’s dreams of turning into a global player by leveraging cheap labour.

Wistron Corporation, a contract manufacturer for Apple Inc, witnessed a violent protest on Friday. The Taiwan-headquartered company stated that it suffered losses of over ₹437.4 crores.

According to NDTV, the employees of the Narsapura plant suddenly turned violent today over their salaries – a matter that has lingered for months. The protesters raised slogans against the management, pelted stones at the office, and set fire to a company name board and a vehicle.

A day after the attacks, NDTV Editor Ravish Kumar tried to defend the attacks and claimed that they were protesting against the non-payment of salaries. He had said that this issue was regarding the extended shifts and the company was not paying salaries for the overtime.

The Taiwan-headquartered company has over 10,000 employees. Police have arrested more than 150 people. Upset over the salary-related issue, the employees went on a rampage at the plant, destroying furniture and assembly units and even attempting to set fire to vehicles.

On the other hand, it is being claimed that there is a probably leftist link to the violence. China is said to be behind the trouble against firms that are shifting business out of the country.

Stones were pelted, glasses were broken and furniture and vehicles were heavily damaged. However, the Government of Karnataka has assured that they will provide necessary security to the company. Deputy Chief Minister CN Ashwath Narayan reviewed the situation. The Wistron Corporation has said it suffered losses worth several crores in the incident.

Writer, historian, and activist Dharam Sikarwar is a very active author The Youth. He writes on national and international issues, environment, politics. He is an avid book reader as well.