Legislation UpdatesRules & Regulations

Union Ministry of Labour and Employment has notified the draft rules under the Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions Code, 2020 on 19-11-2020 inviting objections and suggestions, if any, from the stakeholders. Such objections and suggestions are required to be submitted within a period of 45 days from the date of notification of the draft rules.

2. The draft rules provide for operationalization of provisions in the Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions Code, 2020 relating to safety, health and working conditions of the Dock Workers, Building or other construction workers, Mines workers, Inter-State Migrant worker, Contract labour, Working journalist, Audio-visual workers and Sales promotion employees.  The salient features of the draft rules include:

i. Appointment letter in prescribed format including designation, category of skill, wages, avenue for achieving higher wages/higher position etc. to every employee of an establishment within three months of coming into force of the rules. As per new rules no employee shall be employed in any establishment unless he has been issued a letter of appointment.

ii. Annual health examination to be conducted by the employer free of cost for every worker of factory, dock, mine and building or other construction work, who has completed 45 years of age.

iii. Provision has also been made in the rules regarding journey allowance once in a year for to & fro journey and Toll-Free Helpline number for interstate migrant worker with a view to address their concerns and grievances in a timely manner.

iv. Single electronic registration, license and annual integrated return for an establishment.

v. An all India single license for contractor supplying or engaging contract labour in more than one State for five years has been provided as against work order based licensing at present.

vi. Rules for the prohibition of employment of contract labour for core activity of an establishment and the classification of core and non-core activities is laid down in the Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions Code, 2020.

vii. Payment of wages to contract labour (a) the contractor shall fix the wage periods and no wage period shall exceed one month. (b) The wages of every person employed as contract labour in an establishment or by the contractor shall be paid before the expiry of seventh day after the last day of the wage period. (c) The wages shall be disbursed through bank transfer or electronic mode only.

viii. Safety committees have been made mandatory for every establishment employing 500 or more workers to provide an opportunity for the workers to represent their concern on occupational safety and health matters and rules have been provided for composition and functions of safety committees.

ix. The rules has been made regarding conditions relating to safety of women employment in all establishment for all type of work before 6 a.m. and beyond 7 p.m. with their consent.

x. In calculating overtime on any day, a fraction of an hour between 15 to 30 minutes shall be counted as 30 minutes, at present less than 30 minutes is counted as no overtime.

xi. Mines rules have also been simplified and integrated with the Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions rules.

xii. Thus, the draft Rules are aimed at enhancing safety, health and working conditions in establishments, simplifying the procedures and protocols, allowing electronic mode of maintaining registers, records and furnishing returns, thus ensuring safe, healthy and decent working conditions.


Ministry of Labour & Employment

[Press Release dt. 20-11-2020]

[Source: PIB]

Amendments to existing lawsLegislation Updates

Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions Code, 2020 received Presidential Assent on 28-09-2020.

The Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions Code, 2020

On recommendations by the Second National Commission on Labour, and the deliberations made in the tripartite meeting comprising of the Government, employers’ and industry representatives, it was decided to bring the Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions Code, 2020.

The legislation intends to amalgamate, simplify and rationalise the relevant provisions of the following thirteen Central labour enactments relating to occupation, safety, health and working conditions of workers, namely:—

1. The Factories Act, 1948;

2. The Plantations Labour Act, 1951;

3. The Mines Act, 1952;

4. The Working Journalists and other Newspaper Employees (Conditions of Service and Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 1955;

5. The Working Journalists (Fixation of Rates of Wages) Act, 1958;

6. The Motor Transport Workers Act, 1961;

7. The Beedi and Cigar Workers (Conditions of Employment) Act, 1966;

8. The Contract Labour (Regulation and Abolition) Act, 1970;

9. The Sales Promotion Employees (Condition of Service) Act, 1976;

10. The Inter-State Migrant Workmen (Regulation of Employment and Conditions of Service) Act, 1979;

11. The Cine Workers and Cinema Theatre Workers Act, 1981;

12. The Dock Workers (Safety, Health and Welfare) Act, 1986; and

13. The Building and Other Construction Workers (Regulation of Employment and Conditions of Service) Act, 1996.

Key Highlights

Technological Changes

(i) to impart flexibility in adapting technological changes and dynamic factors, in the matters relating to health, safety, welfare and working conditions of workers;

(ii) to apply the provisions of the proposed Code for all establishments having ten or more workers, other than the establishments relating to mines and docks;

One Registration for all Establishments

(iii) to provide the concept of “one registration” for all establishments having ten or more employees. However, for the applicability of all other provisions of the Code in respect of factories, except registration, the threshold has been fixed twenty workers in a factory (with power) and forty workers (without power);

Journalists

(iv) to include the journalist working in electronic media such as in e-paper establishment or in radio or in other media in the definition of “working journalists”;

Appointment Letter Mandatory

(v) to provide for issuing of appointment letter mandatorily by the employer of an establishment to promote formalisation in employment;

Free Health Check-Ups

(vi) to provide free of cost annual health check-ups for employees above the specified age in all or certain class of establishments by which it would be possible to detect diseases at an early stage for effective and proper treatment of the employees;

Inter-State Migrant Workers

(vii) to make the provisions relating to Inter-State Migrant Workers applicable on the establishment in which ten or more migrant workers are employed or were employed on any day of the preceding twelve months and also provide that an Inter-State Migrant may register himself as an Inter-State Migrant Worker on the portal on the basis of self-declaration and Aadhaar;

(viii) an Inter-State Migrant Worker has been provided with the portability to avail benefits in the destination State in respect of ration and availing benefits of building and other construction worker cess;

Constitution of National Occupational Safety and Health Advisory Board

(ix) to constitute the National Occupational Safety and Health Advisory Board to give recommendations to the Central Government on policy matters, relating to occupational safety, health and working conditions of workers;

(x) to constitute the State Occupational Safety and Health Advisory Board at the State level to advice the State Government on such matters arising out of the administration of the proposed Code;

(xi) to make a provision for the constitution of Safety Committee by the appropriate Government in any establishment or class of establishments;

Employment of Women

(xii) to employ women in all establishments for all types of work. They can also work at night, that is, beyond 7 PM and before 6 AM subject to the conditions relating to safety, holiday, working hours and their consent;

Common License

(xiii) to make provision of “common license” for factory, contract labour and beedi and cigar establishments and to introduce the concept of a single all India license for a period of five years to engage the contract labour;

Monetary Penalties

(xiv) to enable the courts to give a portion of monetary penalties up to fifty per cent. to the worker who is a victim of an accident or to the legal heirs of such victim in the case of his death;

(xv) to provide overriding powers to the Central Government to regulate general safety and health of persons residing in whole or part of India in the event of the declaration of epidemic or pandemic or disaster;

(xvi) to make provision for Social Security Fund for the welfare of unorganised workers; and

(xvii) to make provision for adjudging the penalties imposed under the Code.

Read the Act, here: Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions Code, 2020


Ministry of Law and Justice

Legislation UpdatesStatutes/Bills/Ordinances

Union Cabinet has approved for the introduction of the Code on Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions Bill, 2019 in the Parliament. This proposal would enhance the coverage of the safety, health and working conditions provisions manifold as compared to the present scenario. The decision will enhance the coverage of the safety, health and working conditions provisions manifold as compared to the present scenario.

New Code has been drafted after amalgamation, simplification and rationalisation of the relevant provisions of the 13 Central Labour Acts:

  • The Factories Act, 1948;
  • The Mines Act, 1952;
  • The Dock Workers (Safety, Health and Welfare) Act, 1986;
  • The Building and Other Construction Workers (Regulation of Employment and Conditions of Service) Act, 1996;
  • The Plantations Labour Act, 1951;
  • The Contract Labour (Regulation and Abolition) Act, 1970;
  • The Inter-State Migrant workmen (Regulation of Employment and Conditions of Service) Act, 1979;
  • The Working Journalist and other Newspaper Employees (Conditions of Service and Misc. Provision) Act, 1955;
  • The Working Journalist (Fixation of rates of wages) Act, 1958;
  • The Motor Transport Workers Act, 1961;
  • Sales Promotion Employees (Condition of Service) Act, 1976;
  • The Beedi and Cigar Workers (Conditions of Employment) Act, 1966; and
  • The Cine Workers and Cinema Theatre Workers Act, 1981. After the enactment of the Code, all these Acts being subsumed in the Code will be repealed.

[Press Release dt. 10-07-2019]

Cabinet