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Industrial Disputes

An industrial dispute may be defined as a conflict or difference of opinion between management and workers on the terms of employment. It is a disagreement between an employer and employees' representative; usually a trade union, over pay and other working conditions and can result in industrial actions. When an industrial dispute occurs, both the parties, that is the management and the workmen, try to pressurize each other. The management may resort to lockouts while the workers may resort to strikes, picketing or gheraos.

Industrial Disputes Act,1947


Industrial Disputes Act,1947, an industrial dispute in defined as any dispute or difference between employers and employers, or betweenemployers and workmen, or between workmen and which is connected with the employment or non-employment or the terms of employment or with the conditions of labor, of any person. This definition includes all the aspects of a dispute. It, not only includes the disagreement between employees and employers, but also emphasizes the difference of opinion between worker and worker. The disputes generally arise on account of poor wage structure or poor working conditions. This disagreement or difference could be on any matter concerning the workers individually or collectively. It must be connected with employment or non-employment or with the conditions of labor. From the point of view of the employer, an industrial dispute resulting in stoppage of work means a stoppage of production. This results in increase in the average cost of production since fixed expenses continue to be incurred. It also leads to a fall in sales and the rate of turnover, leading to a fall in profits. The employer may also be liable to compensate his customers with whom he may have contracted for regular supply. Apart from the immediate economic effects, loss of prestige and credit, alienation of the labor force, and other non-economic, psychological and social consequences may also arise. Loss due to destruction of property, personal injury and physical intimidation or inconvenience also arises. For the employee, an industrial dispute entails loss of income. The regular income by way of wages and allowance ceases, and great hardship may be caused to the worker and his family. Employees also suffer from personal injury if they indulge into strikes n picketing; and the psychological and physical consequences of forced idleness. The threat of loss of employment in case of failure to settle the dispute advantageously, or the threat of reprisal action by employers also exists.

Prolonged stoppages of work have also an adverse effect on the national productivity, national income. They cause wastage of national resources. Hatred may be generated resulting in political unrest and disrupting amicable social/industrial relations or community attitudes.

Contract Labour (Regulation & Abolition) Act, 1970

The Contract Labour (Regulation & Abolition) Act aims at regulating employment of contract labour so as to place it at par with labour employed directly, with regard to the working conditions and certain other benefits. Contract labour refers to the workers engaged by a contractor for the user enterprises. These workers are generally engaged in agricultural operations, plantation, construction industry, ports & docks, oil fields, factories, railways, shipping, airlines, road transport, etc. The Act applies to every establishment/ contractor in which twenty or more workmen are employed or were employed on any day of the preceding twelve months as contract labour. Every establishment and contractor, to whom the Act applies, have to register themselves or obtain a license for execution of the contract work. The interests of contract workers are protected in terms of wages, hours of work, welfare, health and social security. The amenities to be provided to contract labour include canteen, rest rooms, first aid facilities and other basic necessities at the work place like drinking water etc. The liability to ensure payment of wages and other benefits is primarily that of the contractor, and in case of default, that of the principal employer.

The Act is implemented both by the Centre and the State Governments. The Central Government has jurisdiction over establishments like railways, banks, mines etc. and the State Governments have jurisdiction over units located in that state. In the Central sphere, the Central Industrial Relations Machinery (CIRM) headed by Chief Labour Commissioner (Central) and his officers have been entrusted with the responsibility of enforcing the provisions of the Act and the rules made thereunder.

Apart from the regulatory measures provided under the Act for the benefit of the contract labour, the 'appropriate government' under the Act is authorised, as the case may be, to prohibit, by notification in the official gazette, employment of contract labour in any establishment in any process, operation or other work.

Child Labour ( Prohibition and Regulation) Act, 1986


The main object of the Child Labour ( Prohibition and Regulation) Act, 1986 is to address the social concern and prohibit the engagement of children who have not completed 14th year of age in certain employments and to regulate the conditions of work of children has been prohibited in occupations relating to (i) transport of passengers, goods or mails by railways (ii) bidi making (iii) carpet weaving (iv) manufacturing of matches, explosives and fire (v) soap manufacture (vi) wool cleaning (vii) building and construction industry. The Government has also prohibited employment of children in the following occupations or processes: (i) Abattoirs/Slaughter houses (ii) hazardous processes and dangerous operations as notified (iii) printing, as defined, (iv) cashew and cashewnut descaling and processing 9v) soldering processes in electronic industry. The Act prohibits employment of child in about 13 occupations and about 51 processes. [1] The Fundamental Rights mentioned in the Constitution of India (the law of land) in the Article 24 under Right Against Exploitation also mentions for prohibition of employment of children in factories, etc.[2] The Act provides that no child shall be permitted to work between 7 p.m. and 8 a.m. and shall not be permitted to work over time. No child shall work for more than 3 hours before he has an interval of one hour. Spread over has been fixed at six hours. A cannot work in more than one establishment on any day. A weekly holiday is allowed. The Act also provides health and safety measures for the children. Section 13 of the Act describes to provide child workers facilities of drinking water, latrines and urinals, cleanliness, disposal of wastes and effluents, ventilation and temperature, etc. should be provided by the employer. Measures for safety from dust and fume, artificial humidification, fencing of machinery etc., also need to be provided by the employer. The employer is required to notify the Factory Inspectors in case he engages a child for employment. Production of certificate of age is also required under the rules of the Act. Maintenance of Register: Every occupier shall maintain in respect of children employed or permitted to work in any establishment, a register to be available for inspection by an Inspector at all times during working hours or when work is being carried on in any such establishment, showing 1. The name and date of birth of every child so employed or permitted to work 2. Hours and periods of work of any such child and the intervals of rest to which he is entitled 3. The nature of work of any such child 4. Such other particulars as may be prescribed.

THE PAYMENT OF BONUS ACT, 1965


INTRODUCTION The practice of paying bonus in India appears to have originated during First World War when certain textile mills granted 10% of wages as war bonus to their workers in 1917. In certain cases of industrial disputes demand for payment of bonus was also included. In 1950, the Full Bench of the Labour Appellate evolved a formula for determination of bonus. A plea was made to raise that formula in 1959. At the second and third meetings of the Eighteenth Session of Standing Labour Committee (G. O.I.) held in New Delhi in March/April 1960, it was agreed that a Commission be appointed to go into the question of bonus and evolve suitable norms. A Tripartite Commission was set up by the Government of India to consider in a comprehensive manner, the question of payment of bonus based on profits to employees employed in establishments and to make recommendations to the Government. The Government of India accepted the recommendations of the Commission subject to certain modifications. To implement these recommendations the Payment of Bonus Ordinance, 1965 was promulgated on 29th May, 1965. To replace the said Ordinance the Payment of Bonus Bill was introduced in the Parliament.

STATEMENT OF OBJECT AND REASONS


A Tripartite Commission was set by the Government of India by their resolution No.WB-20(9)/61, dated 6th December, 1961 to consider in a comprehensive manner, the question of payment of bonus based on profits to employees employed in establishments and to make recommendations to the Government. The Commission s Report containing their recommendations was received by the Government on 24th January, 1964. In their Resolution No. WB-20(3)/64, dated the 2nd September, 1964, the Government announced acceptance of the Commission s recommendations subject to a few modifications as were mentioned therein. With a view to implement the recommendations of the Commission as accepted by the Government, the Payment of Bonus Ordinance, 1965, was promulgated on 29th May, 1965. The object of the Bill is to replace the said Ordinance. The notes on clauses explain the various provisions of the Bill.

ACT 21 OF 1965
The Payment of Bonus Bill having been passed by both the Houses of Parliament received the assent of the President on 25th September, 1965. It came on the Statute Book as THE PAYMENT OFBONUS ACT, 1965 (21 of 1965).

The Payment Of Gratuity Act, 1972 & Gujarat The Payment of Gratuity Rules 1973
. Salient Features of the Act

Object  This Act provide for a scheme for the payment of gratuity to the employees provided that the comletion of continuous service of five years shall not be necessary where the fermination of employment of any employmee is due to death or disablement. Applicability  It applies to all employees engaged in factories, mines, oilfields, plantations, ports, railway companies. Any other shops or other establishments where 10 or more employees are employed. Payment of Gratuity  Every employee who has rendered continuous service for not less than five years shall be entitled to gratuity on his superannuation or on his retirement or resignation or on his death or disablement application can be mute in Form-I. In case of seasonal establishments, gratuity shall be payable at the rate of 7 days wages for each season. The maximum gratuity payable under this Act is Rs. 3.5 lakhs.

Nomination  Every employee who completes one year of service is eligible to file nomination in Form -F in duplicate to the employer. In case of death of employee, a nominee or legal heir shall submit the application in Form J or K for claim amount. The employer shall pay the gratuity within 30 days of the receipt of the application.

Claim or Complaints  Any claim or Complaint under the Act shall be filed before the Assistant Labour Commissioner of the area concerned. Deputy Labour Commissioner of the area concerned is the Appellate Authority. If the employer fails to pay gratuity, it can be recovered as arrears of land revenue. Penalties are prescribed in the Act for violations.

Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Bill, 1946


Earlier the economic law of demand and supply in the labour market settled mutally beneficial bargain between the employer and the workman. It was taken as granted that such a bargain would secure fair terms and conditions of employment to the workmen. They had an abiding faith in the unity of this law. But the working of this law has belied their faith. Later workmen found that they did not possess adequate bargaining strength to secure fair terms and conditions of service, they organised themselves in trade unions and insisted on collective bargaining with the employer. The advent of trade unions and collective bargaining created new problems for maintaining industrial peace and production for the society. Workmen started putting forth their demands. Recognising the rough deal that was being given to the workers by employers who would not define their conditions of service and the inevitability of industrial strife in such a situation, the legislature made an attempt to intervene by introducing the Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Bill, 1946. STATEMENT OF OBJECTS AND REASONS Experience has shown that 'standing orders' defining the conditions of recruitment, discharge, disciplinary action, holidays, leave, etc., go a long way towards minimising friction between the management and workers in industrial undertakings. Discussion on the subject at the tripartite Indian Labour Conference revealed a consensus of opinion in favour of legislation. The Bill accordingly seeks to provide for the framing of 'standing orders ' in all industrial establishments employing one hundred or more workers. In the first instance, the Act will apply to the categories of industrial establishments specified in clause (2)(e), which include, besides factories and railways, mines, quarries and oil fields, tramway or motor, omnibus services, docks, wharves and jetties, inland steam vessels, plantations and workshops. Government will be competent to extend the Act to other classes of industrial establishments or to grant exemptions where necessary, by notification. Within 6 months from the date on which the Act becomes applicable to an industrial establishment the employer is required to frame draft 'standing orders' and submit them to the Certifying Officer for certification. The draft should coverall the matters specified in the Schedule to the Act and any other matter that Government may prescribe by rules. The Certifying Officer will be empowered to modify or add to the draft standing orders so as to render them certifiable under the Act. It will not be his function (nor of the Appellate Authority) to adjudicate upon their fairness or reasonableness. There will be a right of appeal against the decisions of the Certifying Officers.

Apprentices Act, 1961


The Apprentices Act, 1961 was enacted to regulate and control the programme of training of apprentices and for matters connected therewith. The term 'apprentice' means "a person who is undergoing apprenticeship training in pursuance of a contract of apprenticeship". While, 'apprenticeship training' means "a course of training in any industry or establishment undergone in pursuance of a contract of apprenticeship and under prescribed terms and conditions which may be different for different categories of apprentices". The Act makes it obligatory on part of the employers both in public and private sector establishments having requisite training infrastructure as laid down in the Act, to engage apprentices in 254 groups of industries covered under the Act. The provisions of this Act shall not apply to - (i) any area or to any industry in any area unless the Central Government by notification in the Official Gazette specifies that area or industry as an area or industry to which the said provisions shall apply with effect from such date as may be mentioned in the notification;and (ii) any such special apprenticeship scheme for imparting training to apprentices as may be notified by the Central Government in the Official Gazette. Directorate General of Employment & Training (DGE&T) in the Ministry of Labouris responsible for implementation of the Act in respect of Trade Apprentices in the Central Government Undertakings and Departments. It has six Regional Directorates of Apprenticeship Training for the purpose, located at Kolkata, Mumbai, Chennai,Hyderabad, Kanpur and Faridabad. While, State Apprenticeship Advisers are responsible for implementation of the Act in respect of Trade Apprentices in State Government Undertakings/ Departments and Private Establishments. Besides, Department of Higher Education in the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) is responsible for implementation of the Act in respect of Graduate, Technician & Technician (Vocational) Apprentices. This is done through four Boards of Apprenticeship Training located at Kanpur, Kolkata, Mumbai & Chennai.

Minimum Wages Act, 1948


The Minimum Wages Act, 1948 was enacted to safeguard the interests of workers, mostly in the unorganised sector by providing for the fixation of minimum wages in certain specified employments. It binds the employers to pay their workers the minimum wages fixed under the Act from time to time. Under the Act, both the Central Government and the State Governments are the appropriate Governments to fix, revise, review and enforce the payment of minimum wages to workers in respect of 'scheduled employments' under their respective jurisdictions. There are 45 scheduled employments in the Central sphere and as many as 1530 in State sphere. In the Central sphere, the Act is enforced through the Central Industrial Relations Machinery (CIRM). CIRM is an attached office of the Ministry of Labour and is also known as the Chief Labour Commissioner (Central) [CLC(C)] Organisation. The CIRM is headed by the Chief Labour Commissioner (Central). While, the State Industrial Relations Machinery ensures the enforcement of the Act at the State level. The appropriate Government is required to appoint an Advisory Board for advising it, generally in the matter of fixing and revising minimum rates of wages. The Central Government appoints a Central Advisory Board for the purpose of advising the Central and State Governments in the matters of the fixation and revision of minimum rates of wages as well as for co-ordinating the work of Advisory Boards. Minimum wage and an allowance linked to the cost of living index and is to be paid in cash, though payment of wages fully in kind or partly in kind may be allowed in certain cases. The minimum rate of wages consists of a basic wage and a special allowance, known as 'Variable Dearness Allowance (VDA)' linked to the Consumer Price Index Number. The allowance is revised twice a year, once in April and then in October. Under the Minimum Wages Act, there are two methods for fixation/revision of minimum wages, namely:

Committee method - Under this method, committees and sub-committees are set up by the appropriate Governments to hold enquiries and make recommendations with regard to fixation and revision of minimum wages, as the case may be. Notification method - Under this method, Government proposals are published in the Official Gazette for information of the persons likely to be affected thereby and specify a date not less than two months from the date of the notification on which the proposals will be taken into consideration.

After considering the advice of the Committees/Sub-committees and all the representations received by the specified date in Notification method, the appropriate Government shall, by notification in the Official Gazette, fix/revise the minimum wage in respect of the concerned scheduled employment and it shall come into force on expiry of three months from the date of its issue. The Government may review the minimum rates of wages and

revise the minimum rates at intervals not exceeding five years. The fixation of minimum wages depends on a number of factors such as level of income and paying capacity, prices of essential commodities, productivity,local conditions, etc. Since these factors vary from State to State, the wages accordingly differ throughout the country. Hence, in the absence of a uniform national minimum wage, the Central Government introduced a 'national floor level minimum wage'. Initially, this minimum wage level was fixed at Rs. 35/- per day and has been revised periodically. The last revision beingRs. 66/- per day with effect from 1.2.2004, on the recommendations of the Central Advisory Board. All the States/UTs Governments are required to ensure that fixation/revision of minimum rates of wages in all the scheduled employments is not below this national minimum wage. Also, in order to bring uniformity in the minimum wages of scheduled employments, the Union Government has requested the States to form regional Committees. Hence, five Regional Minimum Wages Advisory Committees have been formed in the country.

THE TRADE UNIONS ACT, 1926


I OBJECT: To provide for the registration of trade unions and to define law relating to registered trade unions. II APPLICABILITY: It extends to the whole of India. III TRADE UNIONS: means any combination whether temporary or permanent formed primarly for the purpose of regulating the relations between workmen and employers or between workmen and workmen, or between employees and employers imposing restrictive conditions on the conduct of any trade or business, and includes any federation of two or more trade unions. IVMODE OF REGISTRATION: Any seven or more members of a trade union may apply for registration of a trade union in Form - A to the Registrar appointed for the area. The application shall be accompanied by Schedule I, Schedule II and a byelaw and a resolution authorising seven ordinary members of the union to make an application for registration of the union, and a treasury chalan of Rs.500/- remitted as registration fee. (Section 4 and 5 read with Regulation: 3 & 5) V REGISTRATION CERTIFICATE: On receipt of the application for registration, the Registrar, after making reasonable enquiry issue a Registration Certificate in Form - B (Section 8 & read with Regulation 6) VICANCELLATION OF REGISTRATION : A certificate of Registration may be withdrawn or cancelled by the Registrar: 1. On an application of a Trade Union in Form-D, or 2. If the Registrar is satisfied that the certificate is obtained by fraud of mistake or that the trade union had ceased to exist or willfully and after notice from the Registrar contravent any provisions of the Act or rules etc. (Section 10 read with Regulations 8 to 12) VII APPEAL : Any person aggrieved by any order of the Registrar may appeal within two months to the Civil Court not inferior to the court of an Additional or Assistant Principal Civil Court. (Section 11 read with Regulation 13) VIII CHANGE OF NAME : Any registered trade union may with the consent of not less than 2/3 of its total members may make application in Form-H, for the change of its name (Section - 23 read with Regulation - 16) 72 XI ANNUAL RETURNS: Every trade union shall send annual returns to the Registrar in triplicate on or before the 1st day of June of the year succeeding the calendar year in Form-L in the case of individual trade unions and in Form-LL in the case of federation of trade unions (Section 28 read with Regulation 21) XII PENALTIES: Offences punishable for the failure to submit returns may extend to Rs.5/- and in the case of continuing default with an additional fine which may extend to Rs.5/- for each week and shall not exceed Rs.50.00. Any person who wilfully makes, or causes to be made any false entry or any omission from the general statement required by Section 28 etc. shall be punishable which may extend to Rs.500/-. Registered trade unions, furnishing false informations, shall be punishable with fine which may extend to Rs.200/- (Section 31)

Workmens Compensation Act, 1923


Object: The objective of this Act is that in the case of an employment injury compensation be provided to the injured workman and in case of his death to his dependants. Employer to pay compensation: In case a personal injury is caused to a workman by accident arising out of and in the course of his employment, his employer is liable to pay compensation in accordance with the provision of the Act within 30 days from the date when it fell due otherwise he would also be liable to pay interest and penalty. When employer is not liable: In case the disablement of workman is three or less days; except in case of death when the injury is caused due to influence of drink or drug taken by the workman or upon his wilful disobedience to obey safety rules or removal of safety guards by him. Amount of compensation : (1) in case of death:- an amount equal to 50% of the monthly wage multiplied by the relevant factor as given in Schedule IV of the Act or Rs. 80,000/whichever is more. (2) In case of permanent total disablement, it is 60% or Rs. 90,000/whichever is more and (3) In case of permanent partial disablement occurs then the compensation is proportionate to the disability arrived as at (2) above. Notice: An injured person or his dependants have to give a notice to the employer to pay compensation. Claim: Upon the failure or refusal of an employer to give compensation, an application is to the made in Form - F to the Commissioner under the Workmen's Compensation Act, 1923 who is the Assistant Labour Commissioner or the Labour-cum-Conciliation Officer of the area where the accident took place or where the claimant ordinarily resides or where the employer has his registered office. After hearing both the parties, the Commissioner decides the claim. Contracting out: Any contract or agreement whereby an injured person or his dependant relinquishes or reduce his right to receive compensation is null and void to that extent. Appeal: An appeal lie to the High Court against the orders of the Commissioner with regard to the awarding or refusing to award compensation, or imposing interest or penalty, or regarding distribution of compensation etc. Recovery : The amount of compensation awarded by the Commissioner is to be recovered as arrears of land revenue

Factories Act, 1948


According to the Factories Act,1948, a 'factory' means "any premises including the precincts thereof - (i) whereon ten or more workers are working, or were working on any day of the preceding twelve months, and in any part of which a manufacturing process is being carried on with the aid of power, or is ordinarily so carried on, or (ii) whereon twenty or more workers are working, or were working on any day of the preceding twelve months, and in any part of which a manufacturing process is being carried on without the aid of power, or is ordinarily so carried on; but this does not include a mine subject to the operation of the Mines Act, 1952 , or a mobile unit belonging to the armed forces of the union, a railway running shed or a hotel, restaurant or eating place."

The Act is administered by the Ministry of Labour and Employment through itsDirectorate General Factory Advice Service & Labour Institutes (DGFASLI) and by the State Governments through their factory inspectorates. DGFASLI was set up with the objective of advising the Central and State Governments on administration of the Factories Act and coordinating the factory inspection services in the States. It serves as a technical arm to assist the Ministry in formulating national policies on occupational safety and health in factories and docks. It also advises factories on various problems concerning safety, health, efficiency and well-being of the persons at work places.