Payment of wages during lockdown

Payment of wages during lockdown


As we all know that there’s ongoing countrywide lockdown since 25 March, and still there’s no unlocking in India, it causes serious consequences in our socio-economic conditions of laborers, and lots of people who are totally keen about their salary, which informal sector of our society. As we all know that even before the Covid-19 outbreak, India’s economy was during a low growth, and lots of people aren’t ready to find an appropriate job for themselves. The nationwide shutdown has made this case worse. Currently, in India, numerous jobs may be lost within the upcoming days. 90% of the worker who was within the informal sector like workers in constructions or labors who doesn’t have the right source of income are suffering lots. In today’s time, they’re unable to earn even for there food. Wage employers are the backbone of the economy of any underdeveloped country. (business standard)


The Ministry of Labor and Employment issued an advisory on 20th March 2020 within which he appeals to any or all employer’s associations to not terminate their employees or cut wages of its worker. This advisory also stated that each one employer of the public similarly as private establishments are advised to increase their cooperation by not terminating their employees and particularly casual or contractual workers or reduce their wages. It also advised that if anywhere of employment is to be made non-operational because of COVID-19, the staff of that unit is going to be considered to air duty.


As per the labor law, the law says that there are following acts with the assistance of which labors can survive within the situation of lockdown.

  1. Industrial Disputes Act, 1947,
  2. Payment of Wages Act, 1937,
  3. Contract Labor Act, 1970,
  4. Inter-State Migrant Workmen Act, 1979

But As per the economic Disputes Act, 1947 which advised that the proper of an employee and reduce wages to 50% up to a period of 45 days and after 45 days, no wages are payable. This act becomes the matter within the relief given by the govt. to the laborers, It appears that the Ministry of Labor and Employment has issued an advisory that creates mandating payment of wages during the lockdown.

There is a sizable amount of self-employed workers in our society. Such workers can only get the profit or have any earning at the time only the economy is up and running. This shutdown takes away their chance and now they’re even unable to earn to survive. For them, things will become more and harder. Overall, almost 400 million informal sector workers face a test of survival during the lockdown. But our government also works for his or her benefit and there better survival. (the leaflet)


Workers were moved to their village or native house because of this lockdown. some left their home under the pressure of there landlord. Urban informal sector workers who were migrants found it very difficult to remain back. few migrant workers depend on wage employment within the urban informal sectors. They lost their jobs once the lockdown was imposed and weren’t in an exceedingly position to pay rent, and thus had no options but to go away. As transport wasn’t available, they either existed on the perimeter, surviving on charity or left for his or her native places on foot. This lockdown also creates a problem for the lower class family.

As we all there was full lockdown all over India and currently there is not totally unlock as the Disaster Management Act,   to enforce a nationwide lockdown. Same with the State governments, they also gave their agreement in full lockdown. All these directions were taken under the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897 (EDA). However, the directions issued by governments to employers to pay wages to workmen did not come within the Disaster management act.


Section 5(1) of the Payment of Wages Act 1936 states that a wage period cannot exceed one month. In also states that there can be a deduction of fixed salary or wages under some special cases. This situation is given under section 7 of this Act. Section 7(2)(b) permits the deduction of wages due to absence from duty. However, absence during lockdown cannot be treated as absence from duty. Because production has been stopped due to the lockdown. (hindu)

Further, the govt. of Karnataka has allowed employees plagued by the pandemic to avail 28 days of paid leave by securing a certificate from the govt. hospitals. On 30 March, the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship ordered all establishments to pay full wages to the designated and trade during the lockdown. On 20 March, the Ministry of Labor and Employment, Government of India, issued advisories to the employers’ associations that they’re not able to terminate their employment and reduce wages for his or her absences. The ministry also states an advisory that if the workers depart during the lockdown they ought to be deemed to get on duty with none deduction in wages. Further, if the place of employment is to be made non-operational thanks to Covid-19, the workers of such units are going to be deemed to air duty. (ummid)

The relevant section within the Industrial Dispute Act 1947 (IDA), which defines “lay off” as when an employer is unable to produce employment to an employee because of a natural calamity or for the other connected reason. Section 25C of the 1947 requires employers employing 50 or more workers who lay off workmen to pay compensation to cherish 50% of the wages. Section 25M(1) of this Act requires an industrial establishment with over 100 workmen to hunt prior permission from the acceptable government or authority. However, such permission isn’t necessary if the lay-off is because of a natural calamity.


The Epidemic Diseases Act was enacted in 1897 to prevent the spread of plague in then Bombay (now Mumbai). the target of the act is to stop the spread of epidemic diseases. Under the act, both the central and also the state governments have powers to require measures to regulate the epidemic. Section 2 of the Act, which constitutes its substantive part, confers states with the subsequent special powers: to require “measures and, by public notice, prescribe such temporary regulations to be observed by the general public or by any individual or class of persons because it shall deem necessary to stop the outbreak of such disease or the spread thereof, and should determine in what manner and by whom any expenses incurred shall be defrayed.”On 29 March, the govt. of India issued an order under section 10(2) (1) of the National DMA. It directed state governments and therefore the Union Territories (UT) to issue orders, compulsorily requiring all employers within the industrial sector and shops and commercial establishments to pay wages to their workers at their workplaces on the maturity with none deduction during their closure because of lockdown. Further, the government and UT were directed to require necessary action against those violating these orders. (mondaq)

Works Cited

business standard. (n.d.). business. Retrieved june 17, 2020, from

hindu. (n.d.). the hindu. Retrieved june 17, 2020, from

mondaq. (n.d.). mondaq. Retrieved june 17, 2020, from

the leaflet. (n.d.). Retrieved june 17, 2020, from

ummid. (n.d.). ummid. Retrieved june 17, 2020, from

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