It cannot be denied that Constitution has a paramount obligation to corroborate
the welfare of the workers. Yet with time, the robustness of the trade unions
has diminished considerably as workers prowl to lessen the costs and assemble to
argument the profits. In the light of free-merchandise, we will stand with the
benevolence of the state interference for the minimum wage and protection laws
for the employment. It will be injudicious to watch the free-merchandise as
elixir. One should seek for the combination of legal rules with the
circumstances for the socio-economic development for all.
Following the perfunctory synopsis of what were the industrial relations, kamala
sankaran has pointed out some changes to the present labour laws in Asian
continent, which has dominated the expatiate in since 2000. The heterogeneity of
the labour laws is a concurrent concern in the Indian constitution. Also the
existing framework of laws lacks in uniformity.
Nonetheless, the above concerns were prevailed over by the much greater
Our county has witnessed many bends in the developmental policies
since 1947. State argues that this was much needed in order to promote
productiveness and to protect workers’ rights. The five year plan of the year
2002-07 is the instance where center has attempted to put some policies. Both
formal and informal sectors were in trouble, one due to less enforcement of laws
due to less coverage and other due to lower employment rates. This paper despite
the fact of limitations should not be seen as a blockage in the development of
free market, rather as primitive module of the industrial relations.
Considering the above, one should not equate labour law with inefficiency in
every case. state participation regardless of problems can also come up with the
effective results when the free market fails. In these cases, it becomes
necessary to develop trust by correcting the previous frustration in order to
Barriers to the powers of the Unions
All the trade union laws only protect registered trade union laws and
prohibits the unregister trade union to have litigation right to engage with the
workers. It is advised to state that infringements should be checked so that
state can play a vital role in dialogue based amicable settlements.
In materiality, there is too much of inter-union struggle and fragmentation
which should not be overlooked and despite to statutory recognition, bargaining
power is one’s ability which is diluted by the union when same set of workers
are in the battlefield over and over again. Such exploitation due to political
manipulation and inner politics needs to suppress. One such method to curb this
is democratic method to recognize union.
The raising discrepancy between the workers and their employers cannot be
repudiated. Most of the time workers contentions is being overlooked in the name
of being undisciplined or for becoming hindrance in the industrial growth.
Limited income and miserable work conditions, are the other examples which
worker face. This practice will further increase tensions.
How state can intercede
There are innumerable instances where state has abused his power. One such
example could be when the plant side is escalated due to unfairness in treating
the workers, this is done when a caste based slur is being used by the
management of Maruti the car agency, maneser. After the strike, state police
intervene and some workers were detained, which inculcated an atmosphere of
fear. One of the biggest rationales for this is the correct use of impunity in
the non-attendance of accountability. Such impunity does not help in growing
healthy work environment instead, lead towards frequent mobilizations.
With the above contentions there are also other issues which assist workers
exploitations two such reasons are; declination of global reforms such as labor
standards and global trade. Insufficiency in the bargaining capacity of unions
in fighting anti labour enactments.
Consequently, it cannot be denied that complications do not exist. There is a
need to bring consistency in laws, essentially in the terms like appropriate
government, industry and workmen, member of union etc. also the inconsistencies
in the laws shut out the option of ADR and increase power in the hands of the
Also, state should comply with the Human rights laws of the workers to
insure social justice, it is also seen that India has not ratified many
international treaties such as international labour organization, and the
actions such as arrest of employee without warrant should be reconsider. there
is a need to look at the workers doing their work informally as informal workers
are more than half of the formal workers. Numerous litigations visualizes us the
exploitation faced by the informal workers due to their exclusion from the
For the above state can bring the following changes; labour can be included in
the state list from the concurrent list so that multiplicity of laws can be
reduced which also essentially encourage decentralization, make easier to
resolve dispute through ADR. Further, effective implementation of existing laws
is much needed.
Further, it is seen that government policies are also get opposed by the union
in large extinct, for this, union government put the responsibility on the state
government to regulate such activity, state government just for political gains
antagonize the policy, moreover if we neglect this most of the policy is made
for the big firms which also neglect the small and medium firms. Also, the
essence of protection needs to change a little, currently there is a need to
categorize the population to be targeted so that an effective moves can be made,
till now the laws are focused on collective rights making a lacuna for the
In support of the paradigm shift
Notwithstanding with the above, law has its own finite boundaries and becomes
insignificant when sector becomes informal, which did not come under the ambit
of law itself, here comes the role of state, state can play a vital role in
making of the law itself, they can consider transaction cost or other hindrance,
job security and minimum wages can also be assured by the active state role.
As discussed above only registered trade union is getting recognized, private
players in such cases try to make corrupt practice, for instance use of
outsourcing, tax invasions by splitting up into smaller units, charging extra or
more prices, in this regard employer privileges should be checked in, the most
importantly boosting workers confidence with increasing and improving quality
work conditions is required, moreover state inversion becomes must in case of
outrage which resulted in damaging public property.
One cannot simply blame
workers, subsequently, workers should have freedom of expression freedom of
expression, the only way that can resolve such issue between the union and the
workers is negotiation through collective barraging.
This paper acknowledges about the inequality between the worker and employer in
terms of bargaining power, and it is suggested that both micro and macro
approach to raise and underline the issue with the workers currently, labour
laws to some extinct are nigh to the extremity in the market forces.
Decentralization of laws might help in speedy growth.
Somewhere the critical issue are well taken into consideration, for instance
making a safe place for women to work which include working hours of women,
while some state don’t allow women to night shift, there are others where women
do work in night shift and proper safety is provided by the employers, but the
government can issue some mandatory policies such as, providing free or
subsidies transport for women. Further to help in this regard government can
make tax exemptions
There is a need of compliance with the international standards of the labour
laws. So, that unnecessary exploitation by the state can be prevented. The legal
maxim ubi jus ibi remedium which where there is a right, there is a remedy' is
always helpful but Multiplicities of laws are needed to shrink here and ADR
should be encouraged wherever possible. And state should play a significant role
to set a seal the same.
It can be easily said that less the state role in rights of labour more will be
the benefit to the worker but the substantive date shows that this will lead to
more harm to the workers. Workers have less bargaining power as well as have
fewer resources than the employers, so there should be a balance in the existing
laws and proper implementation of the laws by the center and the state. The
relation between the employer and employee is very important and free market
cannot survive if one is abandoned.
- See Articles 38 and 43A of the Constitution of India
- See Section 4(1) of the Trade Unions Act, 1926 (TU Act)
- Balmer Lawrie Workers’ Union, Bombay and Anr. v. Balmer Lawrie & Co. Ltd.
- Kaufman, B.E. Labor’s inequality of bargaining power: Changes over time and
implications for public policy. Journal of Labor Research 10, 285–298 (1989).
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- Sehgal, Rakhi. Maruti Workers Are the Villains’: Truth or
Prejudice?” Economic and Political Weekly 47, no. 31 (2012): 12–15.
- Blau F.D. (1984) Discrimination Against Women: Theory and Evidence. In:
Darity W. (eds) Labor Economics: Modern Views. Recent Economic Thought Series,
vol 4. Springer, Dordrecht. Accesed on
- Rohini Hensman, Trade Unions And The Gender Division Of Labour In
Manufacturing Industry, A Case Study In India accesed on 09/092021