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Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Labour Minister declares layoffs illegal if not in line with govt policy

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According to Labour and Employment Minister Bhupender Yadav, any layoffs and retrenchments are considered unlawful if they are not done in accordance with the terms of the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947. The minister said this in the Rajya Sabha while responding to a query on rumours of widespread layoffs at many companies.

Labour and Employment Minister Bhupender Yadav stated today that any retrenchment and layoffs are assumed to be unlawful if not carried out in accordance with the rules of the Industrial Disputes Act after allegations of mass layoffs by many enterprises, especially in the IT and ed-tech industries. .

In response to a query in the Rajya Sabha, the minister clarified whether or not the government was informed of the extensive layoffs taking place in a number of international and Indian companies in the IT, social media, Edu Tech, and related sectors.

“The Industrial Disputes Act, 1947 (ID Act), which also governs several elements of layoff and circumstances antecedent to dismissal of personnel, governs matters connected to layoff and retrenchment in industrial enterprises.

According to the ID Act, businesses with 100 or more employees must request the proper government’s authorization in advance before closing, cutting staff, or laying off workers, the minister said.

“Additionally, any layoff or retrenchment that does not adhere to the ID Act’s regulations is seen as illegal.  The ID Act also contains provisions for re-employing laid-off and retrenched workers, as well as for their rights to compensation, the speaker continued.

The minister stated that the different state governments have authority over issues involving multinational and Indian corporations in the IT, social media, edu tech, and related sectors, and that no information is kept centrally on layoffs and retrenchments relating to these industries. The Central and State Governments take measures to resolve the concerns of the workmen and defend their interests in accordance with the Act’s provisions based on their respective authorities as defined by the ID Act, he added.

According to the minister, the Central Industrial Relations Machinery (CIRM) is tasked with maintaining positive industrial relations and defending the interests of workers in establishments under the control of the central government, including in matters relating to layoffs and retrenchments and their prevention.

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