Electronic goods manufacturer Foxconn Technology Group on Wednesday reopened its plant in Tamil Nadu’s Sriperumbudur city with a limited number of workers, reported The Hindu. Foxconn is a supplier to United States-based technology company Apple.
The plant was shut down on December 18 as protests erupted after over 250 women who work at a dormitory of the Foxconn facility suffered food poisoning. About 150 of them had to be hospitalised.
The plant employed about 17,000 people before it was shut down. On Wednesday, it reopened with only 100 workers. The workers who returned to the plant were tested for the coronavirus disease, reported NDTV.
It could take more than two months to resume full production, according to Reuters.
On December 29, Foxconn had announced that it was restructuring its management team in India.
Apple said the factory in Sriperumbudur will continue to be on probation. However, it has not clarified on what being on probation means.
“Workers will start to return gradually as soon as we are certain our standards are being met in every dormitory and dining area,” an Apple spokesperson had said on Monday, according to The Hindu.
Foxconn said: “We have implemented a range of corrective actions to ensure this cannot happen again and a rigorous monitoring system to ensure workers can raise any concerns they may have, including anonymously.”
Kancheepuram District Collector M Arathi said that Foxconn had earlier outsourced the manpower management to a third-party vendor. “Now they will directly monitor everything and they are going to take feedback from the employees on a weekly basis,” Arathi told the Hindustan Times.
The district collector said that now four workers will share a room. Earlier, six people were allotted one room. “Previously they were given a mat and a pillow to sleep,” Arathi added. “Now they will have bunk beds.”