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Statutory Benefits in India

Employee welfare schemes can be classified into two categories they are Statutory benefits and non-Statutory welfare schemes. The statutory schemes are those schemes that are compulsory to provide by an organization in compliance with the laws governing employee health and safety. These include provisions provided in industrial acts like Factories Act 1948, Dock Workers Act 1986, and Mines Act 1962.

Statutory Benefits of The Factories Act, 1948

This Act covers different Statutory benefits including health, welfare, safety, working hours, leave with wages, etc.

The various Statutory benefits provided under the Act include:

  1. No worker (adult) shall be required to work in a factory for more than 48 hours in any week (Section 51)
  2. The working hours shall be kept restricted to 9 hours on any day (Section 54)
  3. An adult worker shall have weekly paid holidays, preferably Sunday
  4. A worker deprived of weekly holidays is eligible for the compensatory holiday of the same number in the same month
  5. Provision for double salary to the workers working during holidays
  6. Provision for canteen employing more than 250 workers and creches where more than 30 women employees are working.

The Mines Act, 1952

Apart from the provision for canteen and creches, the Mines Act, 1952 specifies that there should be provision for first-aid boxes and first-aid rooms in mines employing more than 150 workers and appointment of a welfare officer in mines employing more than 500 workers.

Statutory Benefits of Plantation Labour Act, 1951

The Act makes provision for the canteen in plantations employing 150 or more workers, educational arrangements in the estate for the children of workers, where there are 25 workers’ children between the age of 6 and 12, and provision for umbrellas, blankets, raincoats, or other such amenities for the protection of workers from rain or cold as may be prescribed.

The appointment of a Welfare Officer in Plantations employing 300 or more workers is also specified in the Act. Besides, workers who worked for 240 days during a calendar year are eligible for paid vacation at the rate of one day for every 20 days worked in case of adult work and at the rate of one day for every 15 days worked in case of child workers.

Employees’ State Insurance Act, 1948

This Act deals comprehensively with the health benefits to be provided to the employees, working in factories, establishments running with power, and employing 20 or more workers. The main benefits provided under this Act include sickness benefit for 56 days in a year, maternity benefit, disablement benefit, dependent’s benefit, medical benefit, etc.

Workmen’s Compensation Act, 1923

In addition to safety and health measures, provision for the payment of compensation has also been made under this Act. The Act covers the employees whose wages are less than Rs. 500 per month. The amount of compensation depends on the nature of the injury and the monthly wages of the employee. In case of the death of the employee, his dependents are eligible for compensation.