India is home to a fifth of the world’s youth population. That serves as a powerful workforce population as well. This group of people will create a culture of innovation, diversity, and entrepreneurship that will empower the country’s workforce. But to protect these workers, the country has laid down many important labour laws. Let’s go through this and talk about each.
15 Indian Labour Laws
The Minimum Wages Act (1948)This act governs the minimum amount of money or salaries that can be paid to an employee or a worker. These depend on factors such as the state they belong to, whether they’re skilled or unskilled, what category they belong to, their designation, and which industry they’re working in.
Every company should be aware of this act, and what their state demarcates as minimum wage.
Employees Provident Fund Act (1952)If a firm has more than 20 employees, it must register with the EPFO. These salary deductions are going to be the savings for the employee. They’ll be deposited in the Provident Fund account, and these are given to the employee once they retire. Each employee contributes to the PF account.
Payment of Wages Act (1936)Under this act, each company will pay wages or salaries to their employees by the 7th of each month. This act also decides the amount that will be deducted from each employee’s salary.
Equal Remuneration Act (1979)If a company recruits for a job at a similar position, it shouldn’t discriminate on sex, colour, or caste. They’ll eradicate the grounds of discrimination, such as gender issues. For example, in cases where a woman is being paid less than a man would for doing a particular kind of work for a certain duration of time, this law would help her get her due.
Maternity Benefit Act (2017)This act implies that paid maternity leave for female employees will be 26 weeks. Women employees with more than 2 surviving children will have 12 weeks of paid maternity leave. Adoptive mothers get 12 weeks of paid maternity leave as well. This act also makes it compulsory for any company employing over 50 employees to have a crèche facility within its premises.
Payment Of Bonus Act (1965)The government has maintained statutory bonuses for each employee. These employees have a right to receive bonuses from their company. This money is awarded to their employees concerning their wages.
Code on Wages Act (2019)This act is a newly created one that has been enacted for the betterment of around 50 crore Indian workers. It includes 4 major acts, the minimum wages act, the payment of wages act, the payment of bonuses act, and the equal remuneration act. These create a common provision for minimum wages, timely payment of the same, and more.
The Industrial Disputes Act (1947)This act makes it compulsory to establish the Works Committee which consists of employers and workers. It helps preserve good relations between them. This act’s major focus is the settlement of industrial disputes in any industrial establishment.
The Employees State Insurance Act (1948)
This act covers family medical insurance, accidental insurance, and maintaining the Employees State Insurance Corporation. Minimum deductions from an employee’s salary are deducted from the ESI.
Payment of Gratuity Act (1972)
If any employee has worked in a company or establishment for a long time, the company must pay them Gratuity. Under this act, if an employee has worked in a company for over 5 years, they’re responsible to award Gratuity for 15 working days of each year.
Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace Act (2013)This act aims to protect against sexual harassment of women in the workplace. It also aims to prevent and redress complaints of sexual harassment. The act defines sexual harassment in the workplace and creates a way for victims to get their due. It also has safeguards in place against fake charges. The act also defines who will get protection under it and includes women of different age groups and employment statuses. It covers those in both the organised and unorganised sectors, as well as private and public clients. Under this act, the following is considered ‘sexual harassment:
- Demanding or asking for sexual favours
- Showing pornographic material
- Sexually coloured remarks and lewd comments
- Physical contact
- Unwelcome physical and non-verbal behaviour
MRTU and PULP Act (1971)The Maharashtra Recognition of Trade Unions and the Prevention of Unfair Labour Laws Practices Act 1971 aimed to regulate the industries in the country to create harmony between employees and their employers. These acts offer rights to trade unions, help end industrial disputes, act as a prevention against certain ULPs, and encourage workers to announce lockouts and strikes. They provide powers to unrecognized unions, give them a safeguard, and more.
Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Act (1946)This act is very important for companies to be aware of. It requires employers in industrial establishments to formally define the conditions of employment under them. The companies must then submit draft standing orders to the certifying authority for its certification. The act covers the concept of standing orders, the adjudicatory powers of the certifying officer, and CSOs (certified standing orders) to have the force of the law.
The Apprentices Act (1961)Apprentices are hired by companies to assist their employees. They’re usually hired to work for a fixed period. If you want to employ an apprentice, there are certain policies you would need to make for them. Those are governed under this act. This allows apprentices to take casual leave for 12 days, medical leave of 15 days, and extraordinary leaves of 10 days in the year. You’ll have to refer to this act to ensure you have the right paperwork in place if you’re hiring apprentices.
State Wise Factories and EstablishmentsAny company needs to refer to its state’s specific rules about leave policies. Keep a note of the religious and cultural festivals of that state. It’s HR’s responsibility to make sure the cultural sentiments of any employee are not hurt. That’s essential to maintaining the overall happiness of an organisation’s employees. These would have to be read with state-wise factory and establishment rules.
These 15 labour laws are the most important for companies to know about. Not knowing these could result in heavy penalties, a bad public image, and losses due to protesting workers. If you’re equipped with these laws, you’ll be able to ensure your workers are happy and stable.
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