Labour law exemption period extended for IT companies

The Information Technology (IT) and Information Technology Enabled Services (ITeS) companies in Karnataka have been exempted from complying with labour legislations for five more years. The sectors have been enjoying the benefit for the past 12 years.

The IT and ITeS companies in the State have been exempted from conforming to Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Act, 1946, which govern all workplaces employing more than 50 workers. 

According to the legislation, the companies have to follow regulations relating to the service conditions of employees including work hours, attendance, leave, holidays, wages, shifts, transfers, suspension, acts of misconduct and retirement age, etc, as stipulated by the Labour department.

The firms benefited include those directly involved in Information Technology and related industries such as animation, gaming and computer graphics. The previous exemption period lapsed on March 31, 2013. However, the IT companies built pressure on the government to get the exemption period extended, an official in the Labour department said. Labour unions have dubbed the move “anti-welfare.” 

However, the renewed exemption comes with certain riders such as formation of an internal complaints committee on sexual harassment and employees’ grievance redress committee. The Labour department issued a notification to this effect on January 25.

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