Code on Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions Bill, 2019 introduced before the Lok Sabha that amalgamates 13 existing Central Labour Law

The Code on Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions Bill, 2019 has been introduced before the Lok Sabha by the Minister of Labour and Employment on 23rd July 2019 in tune with the Draft Code in the trail mail. The Code aims to enhance the coverage of the safety, health and working conditions provisions manifold. The Code amalgamates 13 of the existing Central Labour Laws and will replace the Acts that have been absorbed within its scope.

Key Highlights :

  1. The Code applies to establishments employing at least 10 workers, and to all mines and docks. Apprentices are excluded from the Code.
  2. Special provisions are made for certain types of establishments and classes of employees, such as factories, mines, and building and construction workers.
  3. The Code proposes the concept of single registration for establishments covered by the Code..
  4. Government has proposed the setting up of Occupational Safety and Health Advisory Boards to advise the central and state governments on the standards, rules, and regulations to be framed under the Code.
  5. The employer is required to provide a hygienic work environment with ventilation, comfortable temperature and humidity, sufficient space, clean drinking water, and latrine and urinal accommodations.
  6. For overtime work, the worker must be paid twice the rate of daily wages.
  7. The Code allows the women employees to work at night, that is, beyond 7 PM and before 6AM subject to the conditions relating to safety, holiday, working hours and their consent.
  8. Employees will have the right to obtain information from the employer relating to safety and health at work.
  9. During medical leave wages will be paid at half the rate of wages.
  10. Employees not to be work for more than 6 days a week, motor transport workers are an exception.

The Code has specified Duties for certain groups like

  1. Employers
  2. Owners, agents and managers in relation to mine
  3. Manufacturers
  4. Architects, project engineers and designers
  5. Employees

Duties of Employers

  1. To ensure to his employees that work place is free from hazards that cause or are likely to cause injury or occupational disease to the employees.
  2. To ensure the periodical medical examination and prescribed tests of the employee employed in his establishment.
  3. To provide a working environment that is safe and without risk to the health of the employees.
  4. To provide and maintain in his establishment welfare facilities for the workers.
  5. Furnish to every worker on his appointment in the establishment, a letter of appointment.
  6. Specific duties for employers with respect to  factory, mines, dock, building and other construction work or plantation.

Source: Ministry of Labour & Employment

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