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It is High Time Keralites Bid Good-bye to Hartals

In Kerala
January 16, 2019

Muthoot Fincorp Ltd. joins hands with businesses across the State of Kerala, in the initiative to say no to Hartals.

Kerala, known for its natural diversity and breath-taking backwaters has charmed tourists for the longest time, today seems beleaguered by the perennial culture of ‘hartals’. What’s breaking news in other parts of the country, has become a regular affair in Kerala. Close to 40% of the working days were lost to hartals in the preceding year of 2018. The happy new year 2019 doesn’t seem to be ending up in being happy! The 3 rd day of the new year itself, faced the brunt of a crippling hartal.

The state has already gone through a wave of devastating events; first Nipah virus, then the devastating floods. The frequent hartals are catastrophic and proving to be the proverbial last nail in the coffin for the state and for its people’s lives. The worst affected are the people who do business on streets and depend on daily business for their survival. People of Kerala are known to be productive & efficient in whatever they do, but these hartals are sounding a death-knell for state’s long-standing aureate legacy.

Muthoot Fincorp, as a responsible Organisation with its roots in Kerala, has been and is deeply committed to the emergence of a resurgent Kerala. As a New Year resolution and as part of collective initiative of businesses in Kerala,
it has taken a pledge of “HARTAL FREE KERALA 2019”. Muthoot Fincorp has resolved to stand up to and not to lend support to any kind of hartal of any political hue.

Realizing the sickening frequency and the consequent havoc the hartals have wrecked on the life & living in Kerala, in the preceding year, 2018, businesses across Kerala came together towards the end of the year, just before Christmas and launched a, ‘Say No To Hartal’ initiative. A major digital campaign was rolled out to enlist the support and mobilise the people with a ‘keep your vehicle lights switched on Dec. 24 th ‘call. Continuing with the initiative and holding steadfastly to the resolve, Muthoot Fincorp took decision not to support the call of State- wide hartal on Jan. 3 rd , 2019.

Sharing the details of the explicit manifestation to Muthoot Fincorp’s conviction against hartals, Tojo Jose, Chief Human Resource Officer, Muthoot Fincorp, said: “We opened all our 843 Branches in the State and also transacted business at most of the places, even though our committed employees at some places had to face threats and verbal abuses from the miscreants.”

He further stated that, “There were sporadic pelting of stones at some branches and consequent damages, by the supporters of the hartal during their procession. Damages, though not severe, were caused to 8 of our Branch
buildings and the infrastructures therein. Mercifully, no physical harm was caused to any staff.”

Sharing further details and reflecting that Muthoot Fincorp is geared up and prepared for a long haul and for responding to the situation as per the law of the land, Jose further shared that: “Wherever the agitators caused
damages to our properties we have filed Police Complaint, also furnishing identity of the miscreants as captured in our video surveillance system. We are given to understand that a few of them have been arrested.”

Reflecting the resoluteness of the company, Jose firmly concluded that: “We have firmly resolved to boycott all kinds of hartals and bandhs in future. We have every right to defend & further the fundamental right of our employees to work productively & peacefully and for us to be able to establish & conduct legitimate business in the socio-economic interest our employees, their families and in the interest of overall development of the state of Kerala.”