This article is published by, 2-10-2007

India: Jeans maker pursues lawsuit against labour rights groups

A court in Bangalore has issued a warrant for the arrest of seven Dutch labour rights activists after they accused Indian jeans manufacturer Fibres and Fabrics International (FFI) of labour rights violations in its factories.

The warrant is the latest move under a libel lawsuit filed in June by the jeans maker against the Clean Clothes Campaign and the India Committee of the Netherlands.

The two groups claimed FFI subjected workers to forced overtime, physical and psychological abuse, overwork without pay and failure to provide contracts.

But FFI, which produces jeans for G-Star, Armani, RaRe, Guess, GAP, Mexx and others, hit back with accusations of cybercrime, racist and xenophobic activities, and slander.

The accused, who are represented by legal counsel, have now been summoned to be present in person when the case is tried in Bangalore.

Christa de Bruin of the Clean Clothes Campaign said yesterday (1 October): "We are convinced that this case lacks all legal grounds; it is meant only to overload our organisation and is intended to discredit us."

The Clean Clothes Campaign and the India Committee of the Netherlands say they intend to lodge an appeal against the warrants.

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Landelijke India Werkgroep - December 6, 2007