New Delhi: The Union cabinet on Wednesday approved amendment to the Industrial Dispute Act, which will make it mandatory for industrial establishments to set up grievance redressal cells. It has also clearly defined that all disputes pertaining to public sector enterprises where the Union government has above 51% stake must be referred to a Central authority to adjucate. The new amendment will also allow labour courts to enforce a decree without involving the the labour department and district magistrate, as is the current practice.
At present, the labour department enforces the implementation of an award. The Act is being amended after more than two decades, and according to a labour ministry official, about half of a dozen recommendations have been approved by the cabinet, which includes laying down terms and conditions of presiding officers in Central tribunals and fixing time period for conciliation officers to settle disputes between a worker and an employer.
The cabinet also approved amendments to the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, which would expedite the process of India’s entry into Financial Action Task Force—an inter-governmental body combating money laundering and terrorist financing.
A Bill seeking to change the Act will be introduced in Parliament, home minister P. Chidambaram told reporters after a meeting of the cabinet.
“Some amendments have been made. The Bill will be introduced in the current session of Parliament and we will plan to get it passed if possible,” he said.
—Maitreyee Handique and PTI