Basic wage under PF is different from minimum wages, can be split: SC

Basic wage under PF is different from minimum wages, can be split: SC

Supreme Court in Assistant Provident Fund Commissioner vs. M/S G4S Security Services (India) Ltd & Anr. [Civil Appeal No. 9284 of 2013] on August 17, 2023,  examined the issue wherein Assistant Provident Fund Commissioner, EPFO (“APFC”) contended that for the purposes of determining employer’s contribution towards provident fund, the employer wrongly splitting the wage structure of the employees and treating the reduced wage as the basic wage to the detriment of the employees, thereby evading its liability to contribute the correct amount towards provident fund. The Supreme Court while examining the contention raised by APFC that for the purposes of determining the basic wage under the Employees Provident Funds and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1952 (“EPF Act”), reference must be made to the definition of the expression ‘minimum rate of wages’ under Section 4 of the Minimum Wages Act, 1948, turned down the said contention holding that the EPF Act contains a specific provision defining the words ‘basic wage’ (under Section 2(b) of the EPF Act), and therefore there was no occasion for the APFC to expect the Court to have travelled to the Minimum Wages Act, 1948, to give it a different connotation or an expansive one, as the same was not the intention of the legislature.

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