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Workers reportedly protest at Wistron iPhone plant in India over pay issues

Local reports showed windows smashed and cars overturned near the factory

INDIA-LABOUR-UNREST Photo by MANJUNATH KIRAN/AFP via Getty Images

Workers at an iPhone production plant in India reportedly smashed windows and set fire to vehicles to protest reductions in pay, the Times of India reported. The incidents began Saturday at a facility run by Taiwan manufacturing company Wistron Corporation, where the iPhone SE is assembled.

According to the The Indian Express, during a shift change workers who said they had seen their pay reduced damaged the offices, some furniture, and factory equipment before things escalated outside. A local official told the Express that police were investigating the incident. About 2,000 workers were involved in the protest.

Apple began assembling iPhones in India in 2017, where it tops the premium smartphone market. However, it only has about a 1 percent share of the total smartphone market in the country, since the iPhone’s price tag puts it out of reach for many Indian consumers. India was the second-biggest smartphone market in the world in 2019, ahead of the US and second only to China.

Wistron opened the plant near Bengaluru earlier this year, part of a multimillion dollar investment by the company in India.

Apple and Wistron did not immediately reply to requests for comment Sunday.