Explain in detail the features of the Wage code bill. What is the need of such a bill?
The Labour Ministry is likely to seek Cabinet approval for the Code on Wages Bill. The wage code Bill is one of four codes envisaged by the government which would subsume 44 labour laws with certain amendments. The Labour Code on Wages Bill consolidates the Minimum Wages Act, 1948,ï¿½the Payment of Bonus Act, 1965, the Payment of Wages Act, 1936 and the Equal Remuneration Act, 1976.
Features of the bill:
- National minimum wage: The code ensures minimum wages to one and all and timely payment of wages to all employees irrespective of the sector of employment without any wage ceiling
- Advisory boards:The central and state governments will constitute their respective advisory boards to advise respective governments on aspects of fixing minimum wages and increasing employment opportunities for women
- Payment of Wages: ï¿½The code proposes payment of wages through cheque or digital/electronic mode along with conventional cash payments
- Redressal of grievances and settlement of claims:It proposes appellate authority between Claim Authority and Judicial Forum for speedy, cheaper and efficient redressal of grievances and settlement of claims
- Offences:The Code specifies penalties for offences committed by an employer. Such penalties vary depending on nature of offence
Need of the Bill: Laws on wages do not cover workers getting monthly wage of more than Rs 18,000 and these laws are only applicable for scheduled industries or establishments. The Second National Commission on Labour has recommended that the existing labour laws should be broadly grouped into four or five labour codes on Wages; Industrial Relations; Social Security & Welfare and Safety and Working Conditions on functional basis.