Kerala Government and News Media – Out of Touch With Reality or Hidden Agenda?
One of the software companies in Technopark in Kerala laid 120 employees off last week. It is also reported that few other companies are doing the same. During this time when the whole world is facing a possibility of a huge economic recession laying off 120 people should not even become a news.
But that is not the case in Kerala. This was widely reported in most of the newspapers. The labor minister P K Gurudasan has ordered the labor department to “take stringent action against those companies after examining the issues connected with entrenchment of employees in Technopark” and this is major news in most of the Malayalam newspapers.
The papers are giving the picture that these companies are committing some crime by laying off these people. Here is the piece of news that appeared yesterday from Mathrubhoomi, the second largest newspaper in Kerala. They are reporting about the lay offs in Technopark and in one paragraph they are talking about pink slips. Since people residing in Kerala know only about unionized jobs where you can never been shown the door how ever ineffective you are, the newspaper is explaining how the pink slip works. To read the Malayalam version click the picture below.
The rough translation in English “the method used by one of the companies (in Technopark) to lay off people has been widely criticized. At the end of the day’s work the employee to be laid off will be asked to meet with the human resource manager. He will tell the employee that the company is in financial crisis and cannot support you anymore paying you high salary. He will be asked to give the resignation letter. The identity card is seized and the fired employee will be asked to vacate immediately. The fired employee is not even allowed to say good bye to his colleagues nor allowed entry into the office again.”
All I have to say to Mathrubhoomi, other news papers, Ministers, LDF and others who are making this a huge issue – This is not something that is happening in Kerala and it is happening through out the world. If the fired employee is capable he will find a job in the same field but if he is not he will have to struggle. Only fittest can survive in this competitive world.
Anyone who joins the IT industry with huge pay package knows very well how volatile this job market is. If the market goes south or if you are not ready to constantly polish your skill set you are out of job. This is the price you pay for the high salary and other perks. When the company hires you one must be prepared to be fired any day on the will of the company. That is whole dynamics of this industry. If you cannot take that hiring and firing then this job is not for you – better get a government job and government supported labor unions will support you from any lay offs however inefficient you are.
I fear there is a hidden agenda in the Labor Minister asking labor department to look into these lay offs. The communist party is trying its best to establish some kind of union for IT workers in Technopark for a long time. This is the only area in Kerala where communist party has failed to unionize. They have destroyed most of the industry with their militant trade unions. They need some issues to get into Technopark and they may use this to do it.
If communist party, LDF and government try to unionize the IT workers and impose strict rules on companies, Kerala is going to lose big time. This slow down is a passing phase and things are going to come back to normal again. But the companies fearing strict labor laws will never invest in Kerala’s IT field. Also those who are here will move out.
Don’t get shocked if you hear one of the communist guy or our media make such a statement in the near future.
“IT companies in Technopark are colluding with American imperialist to lay off poor Keralites from their jobs.”