Striking Workers Riot at India iPhone Factory

WORKERS at an iPhone plant near Bangalore have destroyed and damaged factory property during a riot to protest exploitation and withheld wages.

Police arrested around 100 workers after they violently protested against their allegedly exploitative working conditions at a Taiwanese-owned iPhone factory in southern India. Footage circulating on Indian social media shows workers furiously smashing glass panels, flipping and torching cars, as well as destroying CCTV cameras, light fixtures, and ceiling fans.

Officers struggled to contain the furious strikers, but local police subsequently reported that ‘the situation is under control now. We have formed special teams to investigate the incident’. They confirmed that, despite extensive property damage, nobody was injured during the riot.

Workers told local media that they have not been paid in 4 months and are being forced into gruelling overtime hours, described by unionists as ‘brutal exploitation’. One workers’ rights activist said that ‘the state government has allowed the company to flout the basic rights’ of employees.

A senior political figure in Karnataka state tweeted: ‘We will ensure that all workers’ rights are duly protected and their dues are cleared’. Strike action and worker unrest are relatively common in India, where poor conditions and meager pay are widespread in labour workplaces. In September unionists accused a new parliament bill intended to improve workers’ rights, saying it might strike action more difficult.

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Oisin Sweeney

Oisin is an Irish writer based in Seville, the sunny capital of Andalucia. After starting his working life as a bookseller, he moved into journalism and cut his teeth as a reporter at one of Ireland's biggest news websites. Since joining Euro Weekly News in November, he has enjoyed covering the latest stories from Seville, Spain and further afield - with special interests in crime, cybersecurity, and European politics. Anyone who can pronounce his name first try gets a free cerveza...