States Yet To Fully Approve Labour Codes, Rollout Likely Next Year
The four labour codes introduced in 2019 are unlikely to be implemented this year as several states and union territories are yet to fully approve them, according to two senior officials at the Labour Ministry.
States and union territories including West Bengal, Nagaland, Meghalaya, Lakshadweep, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, and Daman and Diu are yet to pre-publish drafts on any of the codes, the two officials said on the condition of anonymity as they are not authorised to speak to the press.
It is unlikely that the codes will be rolled out this year and the government is aiming for the beginning of 2023, said one of the two officials. There is a meeting of labour commissioners of all states next month to streamline the process, the official said.
The states that have not notified the codes will discuss their issues, according to the official.
Labour falls in the Concurrent List of the Constitution of India, and under the codes, the power to make rules has been entrusted to the central as well as state governments, the ministry said in a statement last month. "Therefore, implementation of these codes can only begin once all states have pre-published the draft rules, inviting comments of all stakeholders."
The central government has enacted the Code on Wages, 2019; the Industrial Relations Code, 2020; the Code on Social Security, 2020; and the Occupational Safety, Heath and Working Conditions Code, 2020.
Mizoram, Rajasthan, Sikkim and Delhi are yet to put out drafts for three of the four codes. They notified the Code on Wages, 2019. As many as 31 states and UTs have so far pre-published the draft on this code, which mandates the central government to fix minimum wage and the floor wages fixed by states cannot be lower.
Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry have not notified one of the four codes.
26 have published the code on industrial relations, 25 have published the social security code, and 24 have published the occupational safety, health and working conditions code.
22 states and union territories have pre-published drafts on all four labour codes.
Labour codes are aimed at strengthening the protection available to workers, including those in the unorganised sector, in terms of statutory minimum wage, social security, working hours and healthcare, among other categories.