All about changes M.P. has brought in labour laws to help industries
At least corona virus pandemic will be remembered for long by industries for the relaxations given by the various State Govt. to help them recover from slow down. However it will remain to be seen as how much labour laws changes will provide more employment opportunities, handling labour shortage, lockdown due to pandemic and recover in business.
On May 05, 2020, the state government of Madhya Pradesh introduced the following amendments in the existing labour laws by promulgating the Madhya Pradesh Labour Laws (Amendment) Ordinance, 2020 (effective from May 06, 2020):
M.P. Govt. notified various changes among labour laws with the objectives of removing impediments and creating a sense of ease of doing business and get industries back on their feet. All that has been done during corona times Disaster Management Act has been used to contain disaster of Covid.
Most of the relaxations brought in through amendments will be for a period of 1000 days that means roughly 3 years.
1.Industrial disputes Act 1947
The labour department of Madhya Pradesh has issued directions whereby certain industries shall be exempted from the provisions of the Industrial Dispute Act, 1947, except certain provisions (like lay off, retrenchment, closure and transfer of the workmen) for next 1000 days from may 5, 2020. The said exemption shall however be subject to the condition that adequate provisions are made by such exempted industries for the investigation and settlement of industrial disputes of the workmen employed by them. The exemption shall be applicable to those new industries which will be registered under the Factories Act, 1948 and start production for the first time in the next 1000 days from May 5, 2020
2. M.P. Industrial relations Act
The labour department of Madhya Pradesh has issued directions that the provisions of the of the Madhya Pradesh Industrial Relation Act, 1960 shall not apply to the industries mentioned in the Schedule appended with the said notification, provided that the said omission shall not affect the cases pending before the Labour Court, Industrial Court or any other Court of Law and such case shall be disposed of or proceeded with as such items has not been omitted.
The provisions of the Act have been relaxed. Trade union disputes can now be resolved between union and management mutually without approaching to the Labour court/Industrial tribunal.
3. Factories Act
In supersession of the department notification dated March 28, 2017 state Govt. has notified recognition to third party certification for non hazardous category factories employing up to 50 workers. Subject to certain conditions, factories submitting the certification report [carried out by a third party authorised by the Labour Commissioner, Madhya Pradesh ("LC")] regarding compliance of the Factories Act, 1948 to the inspector having jurisdiction, before January 31st of every year, shall be exempted from routine inspection process. With the aforesaid amendment the said factories shall get exemption from routine inspection in the event they submit third party certification report within the prescribed deadline. Corresponding amendments have been carried out under the Madhya Pradesh Factories Rules, 1962.
All factories registered under Factories Act, 1948 in the state of Madhya Pradesh have been exempted from all the provisions of said enactment and Madhya Pradesh Factories Rule, 1962 (except provisions relating to compliances with respect to approval, licensing, registration, health and safety, provisions related to hazardous process, overtime, leave, employment of young children, notice of certain accidents and general power to make rules) for three months from May 5, 2020
Now the employer can take work up to 12 hours per day from workers which mean shift timings are increased from 8 hours to 12 hours with spread hour of maximum of 13 hours in a day. However, Total number of working hours is restricted to 60 hours in a week.
No worker will be allowed to work overtime, for more than seven days at a stretch and the total number of hours of overtime work in any quarter shall not exceed one hundred and twenty five; such overtime work shall not be made compulsory or obligatory for any worker.
For female employees who are required to work during night shift, govt. may specify conditions for ensuring safety.
4. Contract Labour (Regulation & Abolition) Act, 1970
The threshold with respect to exemption from applicability of the Madhya Pradesh Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Act, 1961 has been increased from 50 employees to 100 employees. This means that establishments in the state of Madhya Pradesh with less than 100 employees will not be required to comply with the provisions of the said enactment.
The amendments will allow the principal employers to make online application (for grant of license). Further, such applications will no more required to be personally delivered to the Licensing Officer by the applicant. In addition to the said amendments, the validity of the licenses granted to contractors shall stand extended for the period of the contract for which the application is made.
If the registering officer fails to pass an order either granting or refusing or objecting to grant or amend the registration of establishment and/or licence of the contractor within a period of 30 days after submission of an application complete in all respects, registration/licence will be deemed as granted.
5. The Madhya Pradesh Labour Laws (Amendment) and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 2015
Exemption from maintaining multiple registers and submission of multiple returns under Certain Labour Laws (13 Acts).
The state government, by order, notify forms for maintaining registers and records and furnishing returns by an employer/establishments in lieu of the forms prescribed under the said 13 Acts.
The government of Madhya Pradesh has empowered itself to exempt any establishment or any category of establishments from any or all of the provisions of Madhya Pradesh Shram Kalyan Nidhi Adhiniyam, 1982 (which provides for the constitution of a labour welfare fund for the financing of activities to promote the welfare of labour in the state of Madhya Pradesh), subject to such condition, as may be specified by the government.
M.P. Shops & Commercial Establishments Act
Notification has been issued for allowing shops or commercial establishments to remain open from 6 a.m. to 12 midnight. In furtherance to the aforesaid, a few state governments in the likes of Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat have amended their respective factories laws to increase the work time to 12 hours/day and 72 hours/week in place of 8 hours/day and 48 hours/week. Despite the said measure being taken by respective state governments, the central government has not shown any willingness to introduce any amendment to the labour laws through promulgating ordinances (in the manner proposed by various State Governments).