22 April, 2020
6 Min Read
Part of: GS-II- Labour Act (PT-MAINS-PERSONALITY TEST)
The Inter-State Migrant Workmen (Regulation of Employment and Conditions of Service) Act, 1979 is an Act of the Parliament of India enacted to regulate the condition of service of inter-state labourers in Indian labour law. The Act's purpose is to protect workers whose services are requisitioned outside their native states in India. Whenever an employer faces shortage of skills among the locally available workers, the act creates provision to employ better skilled workers available outside the state.
The employment system of interstate migrant labour was an exploitative system prevalent more or less in all over India. It was rampantly institutionalized in Orissa and in some other states. In Orissa, the migrant labour (called dadan labour locally) through contractors or agents (called Sardars / Khatedars) are sent for work outside the state in large construction projects. This system lends itself to various cases of abuse. Sardar promised at the time of recruitment that wages would be calculated on piece rate basis would not be settled every month as promised. Once the worker came under clutches of the contractor he took him to a far off place on payment of railways fare only. No working hours were fixed for interstate migrant workers and they had to work on all days in a week under extremely bad working conditions.
The twenty-eighth State Labour Ministers conference held on 21-10-1976 recommended for setting up of a small compact committee to examine all issues and suggest measures for eliminating the abuses prevalent in the interstate worker's deployment. The compact committee which was constituted in February 1977, recommended the enactment of separate central legislation to regulate the employment of interstate migrant workers.
Rights of interstate workers
In addition to the general labour laws applicable to all workers, the interstate workers are entitled with
Role of contractors
Registration of all contractors who employ or employed five or more Interstate Migrant Workmen on any day of the preceding 12 months.
Role of principal employers
Role of state governments
The Interstate Migrant Workers (Regulation of Employment and Conditions of Service) Amendment Bill, 2011 is proposed to make this Act gender neutral by amending its title and replacing the word ‘workman and workmen’ by the words ‘worker and workers’ respectively. However, the lawmakers have not thought of bringing additional provisions to implement this Act strictly with more accountability and punishments for violations.
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