9th June 2015
Shri Bandaru Dattatreya
Minister of Labour & Employment
Govt of India
Shram Shakti Bhawan
Rafi Marg, New Delhi 110001
It is shocking that the Labour Ministry has issued a notification no G.S.R. (E) dated 29th April 2015 publishing draft rules to amend the Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Central Rules 1946 being proposed by the Central Government inviting suggestions/objections within 45 days. The amendment aims at introducing “fixed term employment” with the unfettered right of the employer to retrench without notice and compensation. Unfortunately, the notification skipped our attention and so we could not respond immediately. And the copy of the said notification, surprisingly enough, has not been sent to the Central Trade Unions as per usual practice.
It is really shocking because, the Ministry could silently issue the said notification without consulting the Central Trade Unions and asking their opinion on such proposal having a serious bearing on the working conditions and job security of the industrial workers, before bringing it in public domain. This is gross violation of the basic norm of tripartism and CITU hereby lodges its protest against such violation.
You may please recall that before and after 29th April 2015, there had been number of meetings between the Labour Ministry and the central trade unions on various issues including on labour law amendments, wherein all officials including Labour Secretary, Joint Secretary (Labour) and also sometimes yourself as Labour Minister were present. But at no point of time, the representatives of Central Trade Unions were ever conveyed about such retrograde proposal of the Govt for reintroducing “fixed term employment” through amending the central rules under Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Act.
You may also please recall that that the same provision for fixed term employment was once introduced on 10-12-2003 through Gezette Notification. Prior to such introduction, Central Trade Unions were consulted in advance and all the central trade unions opposed to such amendment. And subsequently, following widespread countrywide protests by the trade unions, the same was rescinded in 2007 or so by issuance of another Gezette Notification by the UPA Govt.
Again the same rescinded notification on imposing conditions of bonded labour on industrial workers is being sought to brought back through present proposal for amending the Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Central Rules 1946. Is this the mandate of the Ministry of Labour ? Is the clock being sought to be turned backward ?
CITU records its emphatic protest against the very modality adopted by the Ministry for bypassing trade unions while pushing through retrograde changes in employment conditions through executive order. CITU also records its opposition to the proposed amendment in Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Central Rules and urges upon you to withdraw the proposal in the interests of fairness and propriety.
( TAPAN SEN )