Dear Colleagues When does the conciliation proceeding is treated as commenced under Industrial Dispute Act. Regards Nirmal
From India, Mumbai
A conciliation proceeding is deemed to have commenced on the date on which the dispute is referred to the conciliation officer. Madhu.T.K
From India, Kannur
Where any industrial dispute exists or is apprehended, the conciliation officer may, or where the dispute relates to a public utility service and a notice under section 22 has been given, shall hold conciliation proceedings in the prescribed manner.
The conciliation officer shall, for the purpose of bringing about a settlement of the dispute, without delay, investigate the dispute and all matters affecting the merits and the right settlement thereof and may do all such things as he thinks fit for the purpose of inducing the parties to come to a fair and amicable settlement of the dispute.
The Report to be submitted to the appropriate Govt.
A report under this section shall be submitted within Fourteen days of the commencement of the conciliation proceedings or
within such shorter period as may be fixed by the appropriate Government

From India, Mumbai
Dear Nirmal,

I am not sure whether this question occured to you out of mere academic curiosity or because of any practical issue connected with some industrial dispute concerning your organization. Whatever be the answer to my doubt, the answer to your question is nevertheless very important to every HR manager and Trade union leader as its widespread ramifications can affect the industrial relations further. The brief answer given by Mr.Madhu indicates the commencement of conciliation to the reference of the dispute by any one of the parties to the dispute whereas Mr.Aditya's elaborate reply, though covers more the duties of the Conciliation Officer, just touches its commencement to an earlier stage of apprehension of the dispute. In a way or other both are correct from practical points of view emanating from the provisions of the Industrial Disputes Act,1947. So, I may be kindly excused to demand more of the precious time and the focussed attention of the keenly interested people like you. We don't find any statutory definition for the term " conciliation " in the I.D Act though it defines terms such as " Conciliation Officer " [2(d)], " Cnciliation Proceeding " [2(e)]etc., associated with the term. Therefore, if we resort to dictionary meaning we will find " to make compatible ', " to reconcile", " to pacify" all invariably pointing to the act of intervention and mediation by a third party in a dispute. So, in general the involvement of third party in a dispute presupposes the reference of it by anyone or all the disputants as mentioned by Madhu. But, when the third party intervention assumes a statutory flavour by operation of Law, the apprehension theory comes into foreplay,as indicated by Aditya, of course in certain situations. When the statutory meaning of the phrase " Conciliation Proceeding " is conjunctively read with the definition of the term " industrial dispute "[2(k)], its precision becomes all the more difficult. A dispute in an industry need not necessarily always partake the character of an industrial dispute. So, any number of references by the parties or a proactive apprehension by the Conciliation Officer of such a non-industrial dispute can not warrant the initiation of conciliation proceeding defined in the Act. Therefore, two schools of thoughts exist as to the exact commencement of the conciliation proceeding. For convenience sake let's call them the first and second school of thought. The first one places its reasoning on the definition of conciliation proceeding and holds that any formal notice of intervention as the commencement of conciliation proceeding. The second school of thought places its reasoning on the preamble of the Act and the definition of the term industrial dispute and holds that whatever done by the Conciliation officer prior to the issue of notice under Sec.12(1) as preliminery enquiry or investigation as to assess the necessity of embarking upon conciliation and the conciliation proceeding before him commences exactly on the date fixed by him in the notice issued u/s 12(1). Keeping this aside, let us conclude the answer as follows with the aid of the provisions of Sec.20 of the Act that deals with commencement and conclusion of proceedings.

(1) In so far as public utility service concern is concerned, conciliation proceeding is deemed to have commenced on the date a notice of strike or lock out u/s.22 is received by the conciliation officer or on the date of reference to the Board of Conciliation.

(2) Regarding any dispute in a non public utility service concern, conciliation proceeding by a conciliation officer commences exactly on the date mentioned in his notice issued u/s.12(1) including the case involving the issuance of a notice of strike or lock out. In the case of a Board, conciliation proceeding is deemed to have commenced on the very date of reference by the Appropriate Govt u/s.10(1)(a).

From India, Salem
Dear Mr.Nirmal,
Our contributing members are already expressed their views in this thread on your querry. As Mr.Umakanthan rightly said that there is no any definition of Conciliation as stipulated in the Industrial Disputes Act. The conciliation is nothing but the disputes between the employee and employer which could not be sorted out and the same is referred to the jurisdiction Labour Officer who will raise your disputes and settle the same amicably by sitting with two parties either may be disputes for salary, refusal of bonus, refusal any payment which are legally entitled or any charter of demand. The conciliation proceedings shall start on the date on which you lodge a complaint with the Labour Officer. The conciliation proceedings shall be recorded by the Conciliation Officer and final order shall be passed
Adoni Suguresh
Labour Laws Consultant .

From India, Bidar
yes it is the day the dispute is referred to the conciliation authority
From India, Jamshedpur
I have a question here.. If union/workmen gives notice to company that, they are planning to go for strike after 2 weeks due to some issues/demands. If management ignores that notice and don't want to consider it. What will be solution for this? Management thinks that, let them do strike, we will not accept their demands at all. If workers didn't inform about strike to conciliation officer. What will be the solution? What can HR do?
From India, Chennai
Dear Stephan,

Of course the present day HR Department and the erstwhile Personnel Department are the same part and parcel of the same impersonal entity called as "the Management" which fortunately enough retains its name and responsibilities without any significant changes till todate. However, the renaming of the erstwhile " Personnel Dept" as "HR Dept" is not for fancy's sake like calling a salesman as "Sales Executive" or a clerk as "Executive Assistant".As youngsters like you with high academic profile evince a passion for HRD as a chosen profession, it is needless to dwell much on the differences and distinctions between the concepts of personnel management and human resource development managemnet. So, the minimum non-compliance of legal provisions by the human resources, may it be the workmen or the HR people in the organization will be certainly indicative of the absence of realization of their knowledge about their rights and resonsibilities as well as lack of workers education. Now, coming to your questions, before getting the possible answers from others including myself, will you please mind answering the following counter-questions?

(1) Whether yours is a public utility service?

(2) If so, what the Industrial Disputes Act,1947 and the Rules framed thereunder say about the responsibility of an employer in the event of the receipt of strike notice?

(3) Why there is a strike notice from the workmen? whether as a mere empty legal formality or something else?

(4) Why the management adopts a tough stand to ignore the move? Is it because the time chosen by the workmen to strike work is favourable to the management?

(5) Suppose, the workmen also adopt a tough stand to continue the strike till their demands are met and it so happens actually, who will be more at a loss, whether the management or the workmen?

(6) Will the other stake holders like your bankers, creditors or customers appreciate your stand and postpone or waive the fulfilment of your liabilities to them?

(7) Like in Tamilnadu, in the interest of public safety, maitenance of public order or convenience, maitaining employment and industrial peace, if the Government bans the strike and orders the management to resume operations with certain temporary conditions imposed by it till the publication of the Award in the dispute and refer the entire demands of the workmen for adjudication, what the management will do? ( of course even after going to the High Court under Art226 and unsuccesful)

From India, Salem
Dear sir, company manufactures seasonal product. Like construction industry related. So, while rainy and on some specific months in tamilnadu, construction work will be put on hold. So, management keeps the enough stock to handle 3 months minimum in the outside godown. Management does not need to bow down to workers demand at this time. So, they will be firm. And workers demand will be like, Due to cost cutting measures management will reduce / stop some of the allowances or due to too much of indiscipline in work, management may start monitoring by cctv, biometric attendance, etc., In this situation management doesn't want to come down, personnel officer would have put meetings with union members and they will be adamant on their demands. So, how long can this strike prolong? Personnel officer is clueless now. Company doesn't have any bank debts and CEO of the company is taking this stand.
From India, Chennai
pl refer the definition of strike and explanations on illegal strike.Further refer the schedules of IDAct dealing unfair labour practiice.
From India, Jamshedpur

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