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Business News/ Elections / ‘Is my employer legally liable to…?': Know your rights as netizens wonder if Lok Sabha election day is a 'paid holiday'
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‘Is my employer legally liable to…?': Know your rights as netizens wonder if Lok Sabha election day is a 'paid holiday'

As the Lok Sabha elections progress in India, questions arise about whether election days should be designated as 'paid holidays' for employees. The voting process takes place in seven phases, with the final results expected on June 4.

Polling officials carry Electronic Voting Machines and other polling materials to polling booths from a distribution centre in Bengaluru on April 25 (AFP)Premium
Polling officials carry Electronic Voting Machines and other polling materials to polling booths from a distribution centre in Bengaluru on April 25 (AFP)

Lok Sabha elections began across India this month with millions queueing up to cast their ballots. Polling is underway in seven phases with the counting of votes set to occur on June 4. Against this backdrop many have been left wondering whether the upcoming election days will also be a ‘paid holiday’ for employees.

“Lawyers of Twitter, I have an important question. Is my employer legally liable to give me a day off on the day of voting in my state or can they deduct that from my casual leaves?" wondered one X user.

“Disappointed to see that our company hasn’t recognized the importance of participating in today’s Indian general election by providing a holiday. Voting is a pivotal right and responsibility. How can young India vote?" rued another.

“Don't treat voting day as a holiday or picnic day," urged several others.

According to the Constitution of India, all Indians above the age of 18 are entitled to exercise their right to vote. The Representation of People Act also calls for every enterprise to declare a holiday on the polling day in the area where voting is taking place. The 1951 law also sets out punitive actions for employers who contravene the relevant provisions. 

“Every person employed in any business, trade, industrial undertaking or any other establishment and entitled to vote at an election to the House of the People or the Legislative Assembly of a State shall, on the day of poll, be granted a holiday. No deduction or abatement of the wages of any such person shall be made on account of a holiday having been granted in accordance with sub-section. And if such person is employed on the basis that he would not ordinarily receive wages for such a day, he shall nonetheless be paid for such day the wages he would have drawn had not a holiday been granted to him on that day," the Act clarifies. 

Employers violating the Act can incur a fine up to 500. 

 

(With inputs from agencies)

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Published: 25 Apr 2024, 07:02 PM IST
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