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KIOCL launches voluntary retirement scheme

Mahesh R Kulkarni/Bangalore 10 Apr 13 | 03:51 PM

Bangalore-based KIOCL Ltd, a 100% export oriented unit under the ministry of steel, has launched a voluntary retirement scheme (VRS) for its employees citing uncertain future for its mining business.

The scheme has come into effect on April 4, 2013 and will be in operation till April 25, 2013.

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The company suspended its mining activities at Kudremukh in Chikmagalur district of Karnataka way back in 2006 following the Supreme Court order. Since then, it had been waiting for allocation of captive mines in Bellary district of Karnataka.

According to a notification issued by the company, the objective of introducing a VRS is rationalisation of existing manpower in terms of numbers as well as skill matrix, effective utilisation of human resources and cost reduction.

The VRS applies to permanent employees on the rolls of KIOCL including the employees who are posted on tenure/deputation basis to other PSUs.

However, it does not apply to employees appointed on contract basis for specified period, government servants and others employed on deputation terms in KIOCL Limited, CMD and Directors, employees under Bond and employees below 40 years of age.

As on date, KIOCL has 1,225 employees on its rolls, of which 230 are employed at its iron ore processing unit in Kudremukh, which is now defunct.

The employees have been informed to apply for VRS only to the Chairman and Managing Director directly. The discretion to accept or reject the request for VRS will rest entirely with the CMD, the company said in its notification.

According to the present VRS Plan, employees who wish to opt for its, are entitled for 2 months' salary for each completed year of service or the monthly salary at the time of VRS multiplied by the balance of service left before the normal date of retirement, whichever is less. For example, an employee who has put in 26 years of service and has got only two years of service left for normal retirement will get the benefit of only 24 months' salary and not 52 months' salary.

They are entitled for gratuity up to the date of Voluntary Retirement, provident fund as admissible, leave encashment for the unavailed balance portion of earned leave and half pay leave (HPL), as per the rules of the company on superannuation and casual leave in proportionate measure up to the date of VRS.

According to sources, the company is also planning to roll back retirement age to 58 year from the earlier 60 years.

KIOCL Limited (formerly Kudremukh Iron Ore Company Limited) was incorporated on April 2, 1976 for mining low grade magnetite iron ore and beneficiating to high grade iron ore magnetite concentrate for export.

The mines and beneficiation plant are located in Kudremukh, Mudigere Taluq, Chikmagalur District, Karnataka with the mining capacity of 22.5 million tonnes of Run of Mines [RoM] and production of about 7 million tonnes of iron ore magnetite concentrate. Its blast furnace is also shut down since four years.

The company's attempts to secure captive mines in Bellary district of Karnataka have not materialised since 2006, when it shut down operations at Kudremukh.

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