Maruti Suzuki's Manesar factory reopens after clashes

The BBC's Shilpa Kannan reports that there was high security as the plant opened

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Maruti Suzuki's plant in India's Haryana state has reopened, after a month-long lock-out following clashes between staff and the management.

However, only 300 staff are expected to resume work and the factory will operate at a reduced capacity.

The clashes left one company official dead and nearly 100 injured.

According to estimates, Maruti suffered a loss of up to 800m Indian rupees ($14.4m; £9.1m) per day during the lock-out.

The firm, which sacked hundreds of workers after the clashes, has deployed extra security at the plant.

Reduced capacity

"We are reopening the plant with 300 workers. With this workforce, we will operate just a single shift," said S Y Siddiqui, chief operating officer of Maruti Suzuki India.

The factory accounts for almost one-third of Maruti's total carmaking capacity in India.

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This show of strength was seen as essential, as many were speculating if Maruti was going to shut down its operations in Haryana entirely and move to the western Indian state of Gujarat”

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However, the reduced staff strength and curtailed shifts mean the plant is likely to produce just 150 cars per day.

That is down from 1200 - 1500 vehicles per day before the clashes erupted last month.

The BBC's Shilpa Kannan in Delhi said the resumption of production has come "just in time for India's festival season when it's a key time for carmakers to make big ticket sales in India".

She added that the restart of operations was also being seen as a show of strength by the employees after a turbulent few weeks.

"This show of strength was seen as essential, as many were speculating if Maruti was going to shut down its operations in Haryana entirely and move to the western Indian state of Gujarat," she said.

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