Transgenders employment in private companies in India

Discrimination is not unknown in India when it comes to inclusion of transgender people in society, especially in terms of employment opportunities. Consistent efforts by activists over the past several years, has resulted in the passing of the landmark order by the Hon’ble Supreme Court, in 2014 in case of National Legal Services Authority vs. Union of India. The Court emphasised that discrimination and ill-treatment of the transgender community is common in India, particularly in sectors such as education and employment. Consequently, the Court recognised the rights of the third gender to life with dignity, which is enshrined under Article 21[1] of the Constitution. In an attempt to provide legislative backing to the recommendations enunciated by the National Legal Services Authority of India , the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill, 2016 (the Bill) has been drafted, and currently awaits Parliamentary approval to become law.

This article seeks to highlight the key provisions of the Bill and its legal impact with respect to a transgender person’s right to life with dignity including employment opportunities. Continue Reading Will Indian Workplace Ever Be ‘Inclusive’ Towards ‘Transgenders’?

 

Indian Industrial Law - Wages

In its judgment dated September 20, 2018, the Supreme Court of India (SC), in the matter of Rajasthan State Road Transport Corporation, Jaipur vs. Shri Phool Chand[1] (Phool Chand) has ruled on a worker’s (workmen as per Industrial Disputes Act, 1947) entitlement to back-wages, if he/she his reinstated.

Under Indian labour and industrial laws, the provisions pertaining to a worker’s entitlement to back-wages is covered under the legal regime of Industrial Disputes Act, 1947 (ID Act).

In this regard, the ID Act stipulates that a worker[2] will be entitled to back-wages during pendency of proceedings. Continue Reading Back Wages Upon Reinstatement: An Entitlement Which Has To Be Determined!!

Sec 377 LGBT Employment in India

The Supreme Court of India has held Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 (IPC) to be unconstitutional, in so far as it penalises any consensual sexual relationship between two adults, be it homosexuals, heterosexuals or lesbians (Navtej Singh Johar v. Union of India and Ors. (2018) (Johar Judgment). By way of this landmark judgment, the Supreme Court has overruled its earlier decision in Suresh Kumar Koushal v. Naz Foundation (2013), whereby, the validity of Section 377 of the IPC had been upheld. Continue Reading What Does the Section 377 Judgment Mean for a Modern Day Employer?

Second in our series of Employment Law blogs on the Maternity Benefit Act. The earlier piece was published here.

The Maternity Benefit Act, 1961 (MB Act) was amended by the Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Act, 2016 (MB Amendment Act) which became effective on April 1st, 2017 (except for the provision that required a crèche facility to be provided by the employer, which came into effect on July 1st, 2017). Questions have now been raised about whether the provisions of the MB Amendment Act apply to employees covered under the Employees’ State Insurance Act, 1948 (ESI Act).

The purpose of this note is to provide an insight into the applicability of the MB Act and the ESI Act and benefits available therein, especially provided under the MB Amendment Act, to a woman employee, etc.

Continue Reading What is Relevant to Know about the Maternity Benefits Act and the Employees’ State Insurance Act

First in our series of Employment Law blogs on the Maternity Benefit Act.

The Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Act, 2016 (“Amendment Act”), which was passed by Parliament on March 9th, 2017, introduced certain significant changes to the Maternity Benefit Act, 1961 (“MB Act”). The Amendment Act received Presidential assent on March 27th, 2017 and came into effect from April 1st, 2017 except for the provisions, that require an employer to provide a creche facility. These are scheduled to become effective from July 1st, 2017.

Subsequent to the introduction of the Amendment Act and clarifications issued by the Ministry of Labour and Employment on April 12th, 2017 (“Clarification”), several questions have been raised by companies with respect to their obligations as employers under certain aspects of the Amendment Act.

Continue Reading Analysis of Certain Aspects of the Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Act, 2016

On August 11, 2016, the Government of India (GoI) introduced the Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Bill, 2016 (Bill) in the Parliament. The Bill was introduced to amend the Maternity Benefit Act, 1961 (Act) – the Act, as many may be aware, is the legislation to provide certain benefits to women in the context of pregnancy. The Act is applicable to factories, mines and plantations as well as to every ‘shop and establishment’ (a statutory term that would ordinarily cover various organizations in the private sector with an office/place of business in India) in which ten or more persons, are/ were, employed, on any day over the preceding twelve months.

On September 11, 2008, the GoI introduced the recommendations of the Sixth Central Pay Commission relating to enhancement of the amount of maternity leave and introduced child care leave in respect of central government employees. Effectively this resulted in increase in maternity leave and child care leave. Separately, several companies in the private sector introduced more beneficial provisions for female employees including better maternity leave than the Act provided. However, the Act did not introduce any changes in line with the changing needs of working women /mothers which the Bill intends to address.
Continue Reading Maternity Benefit Law : Key Developments

A Brief Background

Sexual harassment at the workplace was first recognized as a violation of basic human rights by India’s apex court, the Supreme Court (SC) in Vishaka v. State of Rajasthan (Vishaka Judgment) in 1997. In its judgement, the SC opined that sexual harassment was violative of the fundamental rights of women guaranteed under the Constitution of India, 1950 including the constitutionally guaranteed rights to life, equality, dignity and to practice any profession/carry on any occupation, trade or business. Accordingly, and in the absence of specific legislation at that time, the SC had enunciated guidelines for the prevention of sexual harassment at the workplace.

Continue Reading Challenges Faced by Employers in Addressing Sexual Harassment Complaints

From time to time, concerns have been raised by entrepreneurs and various Indian and international surveys about the challenges faced by start-ups and other companies doing business in India. India has also been rated very low on charts concerning ease of doing business.

India is a vast country with several states and union territories, which presents differences in culture, language, faith and food habits. But doing business in India also means complying with a long list of Central (Federal) and State statutes and their varied interpretations. In addition, judicial pronouncements of concerned High Courts and the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India must be taken into consideration.

Regulatory compliance with several laws is time consuming and complicated, adding to the financial and intellectual burden on start-ups. This, in turn, shifts their focus from development and growth of the core business to ensuring compliance with laws.

As a result, laws, rather than acting as a catapult and augmenting the growth of businesses, force several start-ups to reconsider their plans/strategies concerning doing business in India.

Continue Reading Employment Issues Faced by Start-Ups in India