Labour and Employment

2019 ias preliminary exam test series
  • The Ministry of Labour & Employment is one of the oldest Ministries of the Government of India.
  • The main responsibility of the Ministry is to protect and safeguard the interest of workers in general and to poor deprived and disadvantages sections of the society, in particular.
  • The state governments are also empowered to enact legislations, as labour is a subject in the concurrent list under the Constitution of India.

THE MINIMUM WAGES ACT, 1948

  • This Act, provides for fixation, review, revision and enforcement of minimum wage, both by the Central Government and the State Government, in respect of scheduled employment in their respective jurisdictions.
  • There are 45 scheduled employments in the Central sphere whereas the number of these employments in the State sphere is 1628.
  • The Minimum Wages Act, 1948 does not allow discrimination between male and female workers or different minimum wages for them. All the provisions of the Act equally apply to both male and female workers.
  • In order to protect the minimum wages against inflation, the Central Government has made provision of Variable Dearness Allowance (VDA) linked to Consumer Price Index.
  • Both Central and State Governments revise the minimum wages in respect of these scheduled employments from time to time.
  • Accordingly, VDA is revised periodically twice a year during April and October in the Central Sphere and the rates were last revised w.e.f. 1st October 2013.
  • NATIONAL FLOOR LEVEL MINIMUM WAGE: In order to reduce the disparity in minimum wages across the country, a concept of National Floor Level Minimum Wage (NFLMW) was mooted. NFLMW has been revised from time to time primarily taking into account increase in Consumer Price Index Number for Industrial Workers. Central Government has recently revised it from Rs.100/- to 137/- per day with effect from 1st July 2013. It is a non-statutory measure.
  • PAYMENT OF WAGES ACT, 1936: The payment of wages Act 1936, ensures primarily timely payment of wages and that no unauthorized deductions are made from the wages of the workers. Central Government, on the basis of Consumer Expenditure Survey published by NSSO, has enhanced wage ceiling from Rs.10,000/- to 18,000/ per month w.e.f. 11th September 2012.
  • PAYMENT OF WAGES (NOMINATION) RULES, 2009: The Central Government under these rules defined the procedure for nomination and restricting the nomination by workers to his family members.
  • PAYMENT OF BONUS ACT, 1965: It provides for payment of bonus to employees of factories employing 20 or more persons. The minimum bonus of 8.33% is payable by every industry and establishment. The maximum bonus including productivity linked bonus that can be paid in any accounting year shall not exceed 20% of the salary/wage of an employee. Payment of Bonus (Amendment) Act, 2007 was notified, enhancing the eligibility limit from Rs.3500/- to Rs.10,000/- per month and calculation ceiling from Rs.2500/ to Rs.3500/- per month.

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