Though the recent move of the Central government to invite expression of interest (EOI) to lease out the Hindustan Machine Tools (HMT), tractor unit is likely to create employment for Pinjore residents, the company is yet to receive a response on it. The website of the HMT, Pinjore, had uploaded the invitation for expression of interest (EOI) to lease out the unit on June 15, and is yet to receive a response. Confirming the same, the general manager, corporate planning HMT, who functions from Bangaluru, C Patnaik said, “We are yet to receive a response to the expression of interest.”
Reacting to the move, Mahinder Singh, ex-president, HMT Karmik Sangh, while speaking to Chandigarh Newsline said, “The move will be beneficial only if the company receives a response. If the company doesn’t receive any response the tractor unit will be left in the lurch. There are very dim chances that any company will like to take the unit on lease as the body is under litigation.”
In the invite, the Central government has listed a strict eligibility criteria for companies. As per the eligibility criteria, the company must have a minimum worth of Rs 25 crore as per the audit annual report of the last three years. Though the EOI has given hope to workers who had lost their jobs after the unit was shutdown almost a year back, but whether HMT will accommodate the old employees depends on the company which takes the unit on lease.
Elaborating on it, Patnaik said, “The new company which will take the unit on lease will decide whether it will appoint the old employees or not. We have invited companies and are hoping to receive a response soon.”
At present, 150 employees of the HMT are working in the tractor unit in Pinjore. Rambir Panchal, who is one of the 150-employees still working with the unit has not received his salary since December 2016. Speaking to Chandigarh Newsline Panchal said, “We didn’t not take voluntary retirement as our service tenure was very less. We have not received salary since December last year. The salary slip has not been released to us since May this year. There is no work happening at the unit. We just go to office and return in the evening.”