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Industrial Disputes (West Bengal Amendment) Bill passed in Assembly

The state Assembly on Tuesday passed the Industrial Disputes (West Bengal Amendment) Bill, 2015 after accepting the observations made by the President.

Moloy Ghatak, the state Labour minister, said the Bill was earlier passed on June 18, 2015 with certain amendments. Earlier, sitting or retired judges of High Court and district judge or additional district judge with three years of minimum experience used to be the judges of the industry tribunals and labour courts.

But in 2015, the state Assembly had passed the amendment bill to allow an officer of the West Bengal legal Service with sixteen years of experience and an advocate with specialisation in labour laws with an experience of 15 years will also be eligible for the post. 

Ghatak said that in his observation, the President expressed his reservation over appointing an advocate with specialisation in labour laws with an experience of 15 years in the proposed post. Thus, the Bill has been placed in the Assembly once again on Tuesday and it has been passed after the observation of the President was accepted.

In the same bill, the amendment has been brought to increase the fine for “any person who commits a breach of any terms on any settlement” in a bipartite meeting held between labourers’ representatives and employers from Rs 1,000 to Rs 25,000. With the passage of the Bill, several pending cases will get resolved within a short period of time. There were seven labour courts in Kolkata, one each in Durgapur and Jalpaiguri. Four of the seven courts have been shifted to Barasat, Asansol, Siliguri and Malda. As a result people from those areas do not need to travel to Kolkata for hearing of their cases.
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