Equal Remuneration Act, 1976

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Equal Remuneration Act, 1976 is an Indian Industrial Law brought into force to provide for the payment of equal remuneration to men and women workers and for prevention of discrimination, on the ground of sex, against women in the matter of employment and for matters connected therewith, or incidental to.

Contents

Backdrop

Sections of the Act

  • Section 1: Short title, extent and commencement
  • Section 2: Definitions
  • Section 3: Act to have overriding effect
  • Section 4: Duty of employer to pay equal remuneration to men and women workersfor same work or work of a similar nature
  • Section 5: No discrimination to be made while recruiting men and women workers
  • Section 6: Advisory Committee
  • Section 7: Power of appropriate Government to appoint authorities for hearing and deciding claims and complaints
  • Section 8: Duty of employers to maintain registers
  • Section 9: Inspectors
  • Section 10: Penalties
  • Section 11: Offences by companies
  • Section 12: Cognizance and trial of offences
  • Section 13: Power to make rules
  • Section 14: Power of Central Government to give directions
  • Section 15: Act not to apply in certain special cases
  • Section 16: Power to make declaration
  • Section 17: Power to remove difficulties
  • Section 18: Repeal and saving

Notes

  • Act to have overriding effect
  • Duty of employer to pay equal remuneration to men and women workers for same work of work of a similar nature
  • No discrimination to be made while recruiting men and women workers
  • Officer not below the rank of Labour Officer will be appointed by the appropriate Government for hearing and deciding claims and complaints
    • Will have powers of Civil Court
  • Penalties on the employer who violates provisions
    • Omitting or Refusal to produce any register or other documents to an Inspector or to give any information shall be punishable with fine which may extend to five hundred rupees.
  • Offenses by companies: Every person, who at the time of the offense was committed, was in charge of, and was responsible to the company, as well as the company, shall be deemed guilty.
  • Cognizance and trial of the offenses
    • No court inferior to Metropolitan Magistrate or a First Class Judicial Magistrate shall try offenses related to this Act
    • Take cognizance of an offense when the court receives a complaint made by the Appropriate Government or an officer duly authorized by it in its behalf or the person aggrieved by the the offenses or by any recognized welfare institution or organization.
  • Provisions of Industrial Dispute Act, 1947 will be used for recovery of money due from an employer arising out of the decision of an authority appointed under the section.
  • Central Government has the power to direct the State Government in regard to carrying into execution of this Act in the State.
  • Act does not apply in certain cases
    • When terms and conditions of a women's employment in complying with the requirements of any law giving special treatment to women or
    • Special treatment accorded to women in connection with:
      • Birth or expected birth of a child, or
      • Terms & Conditions relating to retirement, marriage or death or to any provisions made in connection with them

Related Cases

  • Randhir Singh vs Union of India: Supreme Court of India held that
    • Though the principle of equal pay for equal work is not a fundamental right, it is certainly a constitutional goal and therefore capable of enforcement through constitutional remedies under Article 32 of Constitution
  • State of AP and others vs G Sreenivasa Rao & others
    • Equal pay for equal work does not mean that all the members of the same cadre must receive the same pay packet irrespective of their seniority, source of recruitment, educational qualifications and various other incidents of service.
  • State of West Bengal and others vs Hari Narayana Bhowal and others, the Supreme Court held that
    • Unless a very clear case is made out and court is satisfied that the scale provided to a group of persons on the basis of material produced before it amounts to discrimination without there being any justification, the court should not take upon itself the responsibility of fixation of scales.
  • State of MP vs Pramod Baratiya
    • Stress is upon similarity of skill, effort and responsibility when performed under similar conditions
  • Mackinnon Mackenzie & Co vs Adurey D'Costa
    • In deciding whether the work is in the same or of similar nature, a broad approach should be taken. In doing so, the duties actually and generally performed by men and women and not those theoretically possible, should be looked.

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