Recently, the Labour Law Reforms, 2019 has been introduced in India to improve on the ease of doing business index. Now 44 central labour laws are likely to be simplified under four codes in 2020 namely wages, industrial relations, social security and safety and working conditions.

Also, a new portal namely ‘Santusht’ is expected to be launched to monitor performance of social security bodies under the ministry Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) and Employees’ State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) so that issues of workers related to wages can be solved timely.

It would ensure accountability, transparency and effective implementation of labour laws.

The Code on Wages, 2019 has replaced previous laws namely The Payment of Wages Act, 1936, The Minimum Wages Act, 1948, The Payment of Bonus Act, 1965 and The Equal Remuneration Act, 1976. Now the main features of this new code are as follows:

  • Definition of wages
  • Separate definitions of ‘worker’ and ’employee’
  • Equal Remuneration
  • Changes with respect to minimum wages
  • Provisions relating to period and payment of wages
  • Changes with respect to payment of bonus

The Industrial Relations Code, 2019 has replaced the previous laws namely The Industrial Dispute Act, 1947, The Trade Union Act, 1926 and The Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Act, 1946. Now the main features of this new code are as follows:

  • Trade unions
  • Negotiating unions 
  • Unfair labour practices 
  • Standing orders             
  • Notice of change      
  • Lay-off and retrenchment

The Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions Code, 2019 has replaced previous laws namely Factories Act, 1948, Mines Act, 1952, Dock Workers Act, 1986, Contract Labour Act, 1970 and Inter-State Migrant Workers Act, 1979. Now the main features of this new code are as follows:

  • Coverage, license and registration
  • Rights and duties of employees
  • Work hours & Leave
  • Working conditions and welfare facilities
  • Offences and Penalties      
  • Certain workers not covered

The Social Security Code, 2019 has replaced the previous laws namely The Employees’ Provident Fund Act, 1952, The Maternity Benefit Act, 1961 and The Unorganized Workers’ Social Security Act, 2008.

  • Social security schemes  
  • Coverage and registration
  • Social security organizations
  • Inspections and appeals
  • Offences and penalties