Industrial disputes are collective dissent and protest against the terms and conditions of employment and work. In the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947, an Industrial dispute means “Difference between employer and employer or between employer and workmen or between workmen and workmen, or any dispute among these which are related to the employment or non-employment or terms and conditions of employment of any person”. Practically, Industrial dispute primarily refers to the disengagement between employers and their employees. It is not a personal dispute of any one person. It engages a large number of workers’ association having a correlated interest.
Institution for settlement of Industrial Disputes
It refers to the process in which representatives of employees and employers come together to a third party in a view to discuss the dispute and reconcile their differences and conclude to an agreement by mutual consent.
In this process the third party known as a facilitator. In this type of dispute, the state intervenes for the settlement process. This act gives power to the Central & State governments in order to appoint an officer known as conciliation officer and board for conciliation whenever circumstance needed. The duties of a conciliation officer are:
- To conduct proceedings of conciliation in a view to conclude the settlement between concerned parties amicably.
- Send the settlement report and a memorandum to the appropriate government.
- Send a report to the government regarding what steps taken by him in case the process of settlement does not come to an end.
- However, the officer for conciliation cannot force for a settlement. He can only request and support the parties to conclude an agreement. The Industrial Disputes Act restricts strikes and deadlocks during the ongoing proceedings of conciliation.
Arbitration: It is a process where a neutral third party hears to the parties in disputes, gather the information regarding the dispute, and then come to conclusion and decide the matter which is binding on both the parties.
The difference between both the officers as, conciliator only assists the parties to conclude to a settlement, whereas the arbitrator hears to both the parties and then passed his judgment.
Pros and cons of Arbitration in Industrial Disputes
- It is established by the parties and therefore both parties have conveyed their faith in the process of arbitration.
- Nature is a flexible and informal process.
- The concept is based on mutual consent of the parties and hence, therefore, it helps for healthy industrial functions and relations.
- Delay for settlement of disputes often occurs.
- The arbitration process is expensive and all the expenses are to be incurred by both labours and the management equally.
- When the arbitrator becomes biased and if he is incompetent then the Judgment becomes arbitrary.
Adjudication of Industrial Disputes
It is the final legal option for settlement of Industrial Dispute. it means a legal authority appointed by government who intervenes in order to make a settlement which is binding on both the parties.
In other words, a settlement of an Industrial dispute by a labour court or a tribunal is mandatory. For the process of adjudication, the Act provides a piece of 3-tier machinery.
For the adjudication of industrial disputes relating to the specified matters in the second schedule of the act, the appropriate government may by notification constitute one or more labour court. Powers of labour courts are:
- Discharge or grant of relief to workmen who are wrongfully employed or dismissed.
- To determine the illegality of a strike or deadlocks.
- Customary concession or privileges are withdrawn by this court.
- Within the specified period the order referring to the dispute, its report is to be submitted to the appropriate government, whenever an industrial dispute adjudicating by the labour court.
For the adjudication of the industrial disputes, the appropriate government may, by notification constitute one or more industrial tribunals. Matters relating to the following are:
- Retrenchment of labour.
- Compensatory and other allowances and rules of the disciple in the workplace.
- If the company is in profit, then matter related to bonus and profit sharing.
- Work manual such as hours of working and interval for rest.
- Wages and provident fund of workmen.
- The duty of the Industrial Tribunal to hold its proceedings fast and submit its report to the state government within the specified time given.
The central government may, by notification in the official Gazette, constitute one or more National Tribunals for the adjudication of Industrial Disputes in:
- National matters.
- Matters in which industries are more than one state, or are affected by the outcome of the dispute.
- The duty of the National Tribunal to hold its proceedings fast and submit its report to the central government within the specified time given.
Solved Example on Indian Industrial Disputes Act, 1947
Q1) Which statement is the correct objective of the Industrial Disputes Act?
- To prevent strikes which are illegal in nature.
- Promote good relation between the employers and the employees.
- To provide protection and relief to workmen in matters of illegal retrenchment, dismissal without a valid cause and notice.
- All of the above.
ANSWER: d) All of the above
Q2) Which machinery for settlement mentioned in this act accountable for the speedy of industrial disputes?
- Tribunal courts
ANSWER: b) Conciliation
Q3) What is the time period to publish the arbitration report by the appropriate government?
- 1 day
- 7 days
- 15 days
- 30 day
ANSWER: d) 30 days
Q3) _______secures the industrial peace voluntarily and ________ compulsorily.
- Negotiation and Adjudication Compromise and Arbitration
- Union and Tribunal
- Arbitration and Adjudication
- Compromise and Arbitration
ANSWER: a) Negotiation and Adjudication