[COVID-19] Bom HC | Principle of “No Work, No Pay” cannot be made applicable in such extraordinary circumstances; Can’t be insensitive to plight of workers

Bombay High Court: Ravindra V. Ghuge, J., while addressing a petition, stated that,

“principle of “no work­ no wages” cannot be made applicable in such extraordinary circumstances.”

Petitioners grievance is that after the lockdown had been effected, members of petitioner union were still willing to offer their services as security guards and health workers but hey were precluded from performing their duties on account of clamping of lockdown for the purpose of containment of COVID-19.

Payments made by the contractors the above-stated people for the month of March, 2020 are slightly lesser than the gross salary and for the month of April, 2020 a paltry amount is paid.

Bench for the said matter stated that,

Court cannot turn a Nelson’s eye to an extraordinary situation on account of Coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic.

In Court’s opinion, the principle of “no work­ no wages” cannot be made applicable in such extraordinary circumstances, and Court cannot be insensitive to the plight of such workers.

District collector, Osmanabad directed to ensure that full wages, save and except food and allowance and conveyance allowance shall be disbursed by contractors to the employees concerned for the months of March, April and May, 2020.

Principle of “no work­ no wages” shall not be invoked until further orders in this petition. [Rashtriya Shramik Aghadi v. State of Maharashtra, 2020 SCC OnLine Bom 634 , decided on 12-05-2020]

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