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HRM / OB Case Study

Case Title:

Industrial Relations in Tamil Nadu: Tarnishing the Investor-friendly Image?

Publication Year : 2009

Authors: Vivek M.V, Dr. Nagendra V Chowdary

Industry: Services


Case Code: HRM0052

Teaching Note: Available

Structured Assignment: Available

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Tamil Nadu was among the few states which worked hard to make the state an investment destination in the post-liberalisation era of Indian economy. Involving bureaucratic bodies aimed at industrial development and bringing about transparency in policies, Tamil Nadu’s industrial development gained momentum. Soon it became home to many domestic and international business majors, who appreciated the amicable labour relations in the State. But, Tamil Nadu’s industrial relations took a severe hit as there was a sudden surge of labour disputes in the state. Four major disputes that involved industrial giants were severe enough to damage the investor-friendly image of the state. With the blame game between the unions and companies continuing, the government is worried about the future investments. It is high time to understand that the strength of industrial relations would directly affect the economic growth of the state. While labour law reforms and amendments of major acts are under consideration, the future investment scenario might become bleak in Tamil Nadu. Among the partners, who is to be held responsible if the economic future of the state is affected; the government, the managements or the unions?

The case study analyses the effects of labour disputes on economy and growth of a state. Discussing the growth strategies of Tamil Nadu, the case analyses the reasons for labour disputes in Tamil Nadu. Discussing four major labour disputes in 2009, the case discusses the tarnished image of Tamil Nadu. The perplexing labour laws in the state and the need of a collaborative action from the partners of Industrial development have also been discussed.

Pedagogical Objectives:

  • To understand the importance of maintaining harmonious industrial relations in fostering the economic development of a state in general and economic prospects of companies in particular
  • To discuss various initiatives taken by the government of Tamil Nadu to maintain healthy industrial relations (in the backdrop of relevant labour laws)
  • To debate and discuss on the reasons for increasingly disturbing industrial relations scenario in Tamil Nadu and analyse its likely impact on overall economic prospects of the state government
  • To analyse and debate on all the possible options in finding an amicable solution for the affected companies.

Keywords : TamilNadu, Industrial Devepolment, Industrial Relations, Labour Relations, Labour Disputes, Pricol. MRF, Hyundai, Nokia, Strikes, Lockouts, Industries in Chennai, Procol Tragedy, Labour Laws in India


  • Tamil Nadu: Where Plants Grew
  • Advantages of Tamil Nadu as An Investment Destination
  • Industrial Development in Chennai (Tamil Nadu)
  • Incentives for Investors in Tamil Nadu
  • Bureaucratic Bodies for Industrial Development in Tamil Nadu
  • Parameters Used for Ranking and Tamil Nadu’s Rank in Each Parameter
  • Ease of Doing Business
  • Fragile Industrial Relations: Losing the Investor-friendly Image?

  • Pricol Tragedy: More than a Prickling Labour Dispute?
  • Hyundai India: The Tamil Nadu Chapter
  • MRF: Tiring Labour Problems at Tamil Nadu
  • Nokia: Knocked Out by Labour Dispute at Tamil Nadu?
  • Labour Unrest and Losing Business: The Future Issues
  • 2009: AYear of Unrest
  • LabourActs in Tamil Nadu

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