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Delhi: Workers Protest, Accuse Delivery App Blinkit Management of ‘Assaulting’ Employee

Newsclick Report |
“On one hand, profits of these companies are increasing, on the other, payments to workers are being continuously cut.”
Blinkit workers protest

New Delhi: Blinkit, one of the app-based companies that delivers goods across the country, has been accused of exploitation by its employees working here. Recall, that a few months ago, delivery workers across the country went on strike against the company, including in the Delhi-NCR region, against the flat payout formula for ‘delivery partners’.

Read Also: Blinkit Strike Continues as Worker-Management Talks Make no Headway, Next Meeting in May

The latest case that has angered workers is from Malviya Nagar, Delhi, where the employees have accused the company's management of assaulting some delivery boys.

In this connection, on Tuesday, January 9, the App Employees Ekta Union, associated with AICCTU (All India Central Council of Trade Unions), protested in front of the Malviya Nagar police station, alleging “brutal beating of an employee by some Blinkit management members.

The union and the protesting employees told some reporters that "fed up with the arbitrary wage cuts and layoffs by app-based delivery companies”, they had been continuously registering protests, but neither the companies nor the government administration is ready to listen to their demands."

In a statement, the union's convenor Apoorva Sharma alleged in her statement that, “On January 8, when Blinkit employees working near Khirki village tried to talk to the store manager regarding wage cut, then let alone talks, the workers were intimidated. When the workers once again tried to express their views early in the morning on January 9, the company management called goons and beat up the workers."

The union further alleged that a labourer was badly beaten. The police who came from Malviya Nagar police station also misbehaved with the union leaders, instead of hearing out the labourer. More App Employees Ekta Union (AEEU)members reached the spot and registered their protest." 

Sharma, who was present at the spot, said, "It is completely illegal and wrong for the Blinkit management and Delhi Police to harass workers in this manner."

AICCTU Delhi secretary Surya Prakash told NewsClick, "On one hand, the profits of these companies are increasing, on the other hand, the payments to workers are being continuously cut."

Sharma said the AEEU had submitted letters to both the Delhi Lieutenant Governor and the Chief Minister regarding problems faced by App employees, but the Delhi government is not ready for any kind of talks on their demands. Due to its silence, app companies are doing arbitrary things every day." 

The union statement urged the Delhi government to “seriously consider their demands and hold talks with the union so that the exploitation of workers can be stopped."

According to earlier reports in Newsclick, the workers are opposed to the new flat payout rate and have time and again raised the issue with the management.

As per a report in The Hindu, the flat payout structure has been implemented in the Malviya Nagar facility and will be rolled out in other areas as well. The Hindu said the company management failed to respond to an email sent by their reporter. 

According to a ‘delivery partner’, as app-based employees are called, earlier the payment ranged between Rs 25 and Rs 32 per order, allowing them to earn Rs 2,000 after a 10-hour work day. “Now, even if we work for 12 hours, we will hardly make Rs1,000 in a day,” the employee told The Hindu.

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