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The object with which the Minimum Wages Act, 1948 was enacted has been concisely and precisely stated in the preamble of the Act. The Act. statement of object of Bill points out: out: The justification for statutory fixation of minimum wages is obvious. Such provisions which exists in obvious. more advanced countries are even necessary in India, where workers organization are yet poorly developed and the workers bargain power is consequently poor. In brief the Act purports to poor. achieve to prevent exploitation of labour and for that purpose the authorities under the Act have
Article 43 of the Constitution enjoins the Government to endeavour to secure conditions of work ensuring a decent standard of life and full enjoyment of leisure. Wage: Wage: wages are remuneration (pay for services.been empowered to take steps to prescribe minimum rates of wages in the scheduled industries. industries. opportunities. reward) which the workers are entitled for the work performed by them. . them. social and cultural opportunities.
it is not unlikely that labour may offer to work even on starvation wages State assumes that every employer must pay the minimum wages for the employee s labour. AIR 1958 SC 30 In the present case the Supreme Court opined that in a developing country like ours which faces the problem of unemployment on a very large scale. labour.Case Law: Crown Aluminum Works v Their Law: workmen. .
interest. But at the same time Article 19(6) confers power 19( on the State to impose reasonable restrictions on this right in the public interest. trade and business. In Hydro (Engineers) P Ltd v Their workmen AIR 1969 SC 182. cases a class of employers may not be in position to pay the minimum wages. held the restrictions of paying minimum wage reasonable under Article 19(6) of the constitution 19( of India. India. business. The Supreme Court wages.Restraints on the freedom of contract Article19( Article19(1)(g) of the constitution of India gives every citizen a right to practice any profession or to carry on any occupation. a submission was made that in some 182. .
rate. 2.Salient Features of the Act 1. . This Act provides for the fixation of (a) minimum time rate of wages. (b) a minimum piece rate.) relaxed. limiting condition has been substantially relaxed. this 1948. exploitation.It provides for fixing minimum wages in certain employments where labour is ignorant or less organised and is vulnerable to exploitation.000 employees in the whole State.& rate. Minimum wages are not to be fixed in respect of any industry in which there are less than 1. the 1957 amendment to the Act of 1948. (c) a guaranteed time rate. (Under State. wages.
. localities or classes of work and for adults. for different occupations. children and apprentices.or rates. or (b) basic rate of wages with or without the cost of living allowance and the cash value of the concession in respect of essential commodities supplied at concessional rates. (c) an all inclusive rate.(d) an overtime rate. The minimum rate of wage under this Act may consist of: of: (a) a basic rate of wages and a cost of living allowance. adolescents. apprentices. rate.
authority. . The Act requires that wages shall be paid in cash. Labour Bureau is the competent authority. (not later than 5 intervals.3. It lays down that the cost of living allowance and the cash value of concessions in respect of supplies of essential commodities at concessional rates shall be computed by the competent authorities at certain intervals. cases. although it empowers the appropriate Government to authorise the payment of minimum wages. year) In case of undertaking controlled by the UT and the Central Government the Dir. either in wholly or partly in kind in particular cases. 4.
rate. to provide for a weekly holiday and the payment of overtime wages in regard to any scheduled employment in respect of which minimum rates of wages have been fixed under the Act. Act. 7. The Act empowers the appropriate Government to fix numbers of hour of work per day. 6. manner. . The Act also provides for appointment of Inspectors and authorities to hear and decide claims arising out of payment of wages at less than the rate.5. The establishment covered by this Act are required to maintain registers and records in the prescribed manner.
8. employment. Act. The provision is also made in the Act for dealing with complaints made for violation of the provisions of the Act and for imposing penalties for offence committed under the Act. The Act applies to India. employment which are enumerated in the schedule of the Act and in certain cases may in the direction of the appropriate government. . be extended to any other employment. Sec 1: Application of the Act The Act applies to whole of India.
tanneries & leather manufature Part II Employment in agriculture Case Law: C Darsaram V Union of India (1980) 2 Law: 1980) LLJ 461 (Pat) notification dated 28 May 1976 Govt revised minimum wages of workmen employed in mica mines. . Child who has not completed 14 years of age Sec 2 (g) Scheduled employment Part I woolen carpet. mica. flour mills. lac. dal mills. Public motor trasport. tobacco. rice mills. under local authority construction and maintenance of roads. plantation. oil mills. mines.Sec 2: Interpretation (a) Adolescents 14-18 yrs 14Adult who has completed 18 yrs. stone crushing( excluding mines). shawl weaving. yrs.
. Court held such revision as industry.or (b) for work done on days of rest. invalid as the notification only covered mica mines not mica process. Sec 20: Claims-The appropriate Government. process. area.The government revised minimum wages in mica process industry. or (c) in respect of wages at the overtime rate to employees employed or paid in that area. appoint an authority to hear and decide for any specified area of all claims: claims: (a) arising out of payment of less than the minimum rates of wages. 20: Claimsmay by notification in Official Gazette.
1948 1. Any other officer with an experience as a Judge of a Civil Court or as a stipendiary magistrate .Authority for Hearing & Deciding Claims The following authority may be appointed to hear & decide claims under the MWA. Any officer not below the rank of the Labour Commissioner appointed by the State Govt 4. Commissioner for Workmen s Compensation 2.Labour Commissioner appointed by the Central Govt 3.
or 2. or 3.Any official of a registered Trade Union. Any legal practioner. The employee himself.Who may apply? 1. or 5. Any person acting with permission of the authority.Any inspector. authorized in writing to act on his behalf. or 4. Sec 22 & 22A: Offences & Penalties for paying less than minimum wages fixed imprisonment up to 6months .
(b) involving contravention of the any other rule or order made under Sec 13( fixing hrs of working) or Sec 22A General provision for punishment of other offences except on a complaint made by.Cognizance of the offences: No court shall take cognizance of a complaint against any person for a offence: (a) involving payment of less than the minimum wages unless the appropriate authority has sanctioned the making of the complaint. of an Inspector. or with the sanction. .
Further no court shall take cognizance of an offenceoffence(i) under Sec 22 unless complaint thereof is made within one month of the grant of sanction. Sec 22C: Offences by Companies 22C . (ii) unless complaint thereof is made within six months of the date on which the offence is alleged to have been committed. committed. sanction.
30 on minimum wage No. nonagriculture sector. Since then employments. . No. 83 for agriculture employments. the ILO conference sector.Minimum Wages & the ILO ILO adopted a Convention No. 1928. In 1951. fixing machinery. at its 34th Session adopted a Minimum Wage fixing Convention No. 20 and a No. a number of conventions and recommendations have been adopted having important bearing on the question of minimum wages. No. wages. 99 and a Recommendation No. Recommendation No. 1951. covering only non1928.
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