Bengaluru: iPhone manufacturing plant suffered Rs. 52cr damages, says Wistron
Violence at an iPhone manufacturing plant near Bengaluru on Saturday caused damages up to Rs. 52 crore, the facility's Taiwan-based operator Wistron Corp said on Tuesday. The manufacturing plant, located in Narasapura (around 60 km from Bengaluru), was ransacked by thousands of employees who were angered by unpaid wages and long working hours. Videos from the scene had also gone viral.
In a statement to the Taiwan Stock Exchange on Tuesday, Wistron estimated losses at T$100-200 million (Rs. 26.1-52.2 crore). It said that major production facilities and warehouses had not suffered as serious damage as reported by local media. Earlier, Wistron had estimated damages to the tune of $60 million (approximately Rs. 440 crore) in a police report accessed by Reuters.
Early Saturday morning, during the change of shifts, nearly 2,000 workers had gone on a rampage at the facility. Videos showed employees vandalizing the office space, breaking window panes, damaging cars parked on the premises, and shouting slogans. The workers said their complaints to the management about wages and working hours had fallen on deaf ears. Reportedly, 160 people have been arrested so far.
Wistron said it is doing its utmost to get the plant up and running again. It said, "The company has cooperated with the relevant authorities and the police investigation and continues to negotiate with the insurance company."
Apple said on Monday that it was investigating whether Wistron had flouted supplier guidelines. It said it was sending staff and auditors to the Narasapura plant, adding that it was also cooperating with the police in their investigation. Wistron is one of Apple's top global suppliers and it has been making iPhones in India for nearly four years.