Supreme Court strikes down restrictive Gujarat govt rules regarding change in labour laws

The Supreme Court has stricken down the April 17 notification of the Gujarat Labour and Employment Department, that grants exemption to each factory in Gujarat from provisions of the Factories Act, 1948 regarding daily operating hours, weekly operating hours, intervals for rest, and spread-overs of adult staff and even from the duty to pay overtime wages at double rates as mentioned in section fifty-nine of the Act.

The bench passed the order on a plea filed by ‘Gujarat Mazdoor Sabha’, a registered labor union that contended that the impugned notification has been speculated to be issued beneath the powers given by section five of the Act and grants exemption from the same provisions of the Act for the time between April twenty to July nineteen, 2020.

The petitioners contended that “this is blatantly against section fifty-nine of the Act that mandates that wages should be paid at double the standard rate for hours worked in more than nine hours during a day (including 1-hour break) & forty-eight hours during a week.”

The bench has directed that overtime wages should be paid to all eligible employees in Gujarat between April twenty and July nineteen, when the state government’s notification was operational.

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