While hiring for my firm I came across a case where a software company had unilaterally changed to its employment terms and conditions so as to:
[1] deny its employees the right to pay notice period equivalent salary in lieu of them serving their full notice period
[2] increase the employees minimum notice period to 3 months which is non-negotiable and MUST BE SERVED at the company even if the employee does not wish to work there. Note: due to employee protests, this was later reduced to 2 months compulsory notice period which cannot be paid off with equivalent salary in lieu thereof.

The penalty for violation of the above is that the employees will not be formally relieved or given their relieving letters, plus legal action (which is actually taken, i.e. not just a threat) due to breach of the compulsory notice period policy.

This has made their employees defacto unhirable, as few firms will wait for three months for lateral hires to join them from other firms, and as most firms will ask for their past relieving letters. Further taking advantage of the trap it has created for its employees, the company is only paying its employees 50-70% of what they can easily earn working in another similar role in another IT company.

To me this seems much like an IT equivalent of bonded labor. It seems this practice is in breach of both the UN 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights "No one shall be held in slavery or servitude...", the UN 1930 Forced Labor Convention "The term forced or compulsory labour shall mean all work or service, which is exacted, from any person under the menace of any penalty and for which the said person has not offered himself voluntarily", and Article 23 of the Indian Constitution "Traffic in human beings and other similar forms of forced labour [which I am assuming includes a period of forced employment] are prohibited and any contravention of this provision shall be an offence punishable in accordance with law."

Is this type of notice period legal for a private firm in India? Can anyone reference a legal precedent banning such an exploitative practice, which seems to be defacto slavery of IT professionals?

From India, Bangalore
dear
IT comany are using their employees as bounded labour besides this they take your all original certificate in their custody.they are doing all illegal things but proffessinal working in IT are educated lot and they donot want to take help of court otherwise
all laws are applicable to IT industries but no one approach to authorities for unfair labour practices.
tks
j s malik

From India, Delhi
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