Taking another step forward in the corporatisation of the OFB, a High Level Official Committee (HLOC) of Department of Defence Production (DDP), Ministry of Defence (MoD), has commenced talks with employees’ federations/unions to address their concerns regarding corporatisation of Ordnance Factory Board (OFB) in MoD on Friday. The committee, headed by Additional Secretary (DDP) V.L. Kantha Rao along with senior MoD and Army officials, held meetings through video conferencing with three such associations — Confederation of Defence Recognised Associations (CDRA), Indian Ordnance Factories Gazetted Officers Association (IOFGOA) and National Defence Group-B Gazetted Officers Association (NDGBGOA).
Through these meetings, the intent of the government to implement aforesaid decision with involvement of all the stakeholders was conveyed and suggestions were invited from the association members on ways to safeguard the benefits/interests of employees in terms of wages, salary, retirement benefits, health facilities and other service matters, etc, while converting OFB into one or more 100 per cent government-owned corporate entities. Suggestions were also sought on their concern regarding future orders and budgetary support needed from the Government for the new corporate entity/entities.
One of the union leaders who was present in the meting, on the condition of anonymity, told The Daily Guardian, “That the discussions in the meeting took place without any major resistance from the unions and the meeting progressed in a cordial atmosphere. Although the request of the associations to hold more meetings with all OFB employees’ federations/unions participating together was considered by the Committee and it was assured that the engagement with the Federations/Unions will be continued.”
As part of the Aatmanirbhar Bharat package, the government had announced on 16 May 2020 that it would improve autonomy, accountability and efficiency in ordnance supplies by corporatisation of OFB.