Tripartite and Bipartite Bodies, Standing orders15th March 2021
Tripartite bodies involve employee, employer and Government. Bipartite committee comprises of employer and employee. Tripartite committee includes committees on Conventions, steering committee on wages, central implementation and evaluation machinery, Central Board of Worker’s Education and National Productivity Council.
Workers committee is an example for Bipartite committee. This committee is represented by employer and employees. It is established through legislation. Method of constitution of this committee is specified in the enactment.
Functions of Workers Committee:
- Promoting industrial goodwill.
- Securing cooperation from the employer and the employees.
- Removing causes of friction between parties to dispute.
- Creating an atmosphere for voluntary settlement of issues like wage benefits, bonus, terms of employment, workload, welfare, training, promotion, transfer, etc. Inter-union-rivalry, union’s opposition, employee’s reluctance to use workers committee for setting dispute hinder its effective functioning.
The concept of ‘Standing Orders’ is one of the recent growths in relation to Indian labour- management. Prior to 1946, there existed chaotic conditions of employment, wherein the workmen were engaged on an individual basis with uncertain and vague terms of employment. The Act was enacted as a simple measure to remedy this situation by bringing about uniformity in the terms of employment in industrial establishments so as to minimize industrial conflicts.
- Establishment employing 20 or more should put in place standing orders or regulations.
- Standing orders can be prepared by employer and employees/ recognized unions/federations.
- In case of disagreement between the employer and the employee, matter would be determined by the certifying authority i.e., Labour Commissioner having jurisdiction. Once the standing order is passed, it is binding on the parties to dispute.
Section 2(g) of the Act states that “standing orders” are the rules relating to matters set out in the Schedule, i.e. with reference to:
- The classification of workmen;
- Manner of intimation to workers about work and wage-related details;
- Attendance, and conditions of granting leaves, etc.;
- Rights & liabilities of the employer/ workmen in certain circumstances;
- Conditions of ‘termination of’/‘suspension from’ employment; and
- Means of redressal for workmen, or any other matter.
Reasonableness of Standing Order
The proviso to Section 4 of the Act, as amended by Act 56 of 1956, necessitates the Certifying Officer or appellate authority to adjudicate upon the fairness or reasonableness of the contents of such Draft Standing Order in order to proceed with its certification.
Certification Process: Section 5
The procedure for certification of Standing Order, as prescribed under Section 5 of the Act, is threefold:
- The Certifying Officer to send a copy of the Draft Standing Order to the workmen or trade union, along with a notice calling for objections, that shall be submitted to him within 15 days of receiving such notice.
- Upon receipt of such objections, the employer and workmen to be given an opportunity of being heard, after which the Certifying Officer shall decide and pass an order for modification of the Standing Order.
- Finally, the Certifying Officer shall certify such Standing Order, and thereby, within seven days, send a copy of it annexed with his order for modification passed under Section 5(2).
Appeals: Section 6
Any related party aggrieved by the order of the Certifying Officer may appeal to the ‘appellate authority’ within 30 days, provided that its decision, of confirming such Standing Order or amending it, shall be final. The appellate authority shall thereafter send copies of the Standing Order, if amended, to the related parties within seven days.