Labour Law & Hr Consultant
Srinath Sai Ram
Hr Manager

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I work as Manager - HR and was handling all HR activities reporting to owner /MD of a manufacturing set up in Pune. I joined in July 2918 and was confirmed in feb 2019. I informed about my Pregnancy in written and oral format at the 2nd month of pregnancy itself.
My employer verbally asked me to resign since my doc advised me rest from home for entire Pregnancy. I did not wish to resign and informed I am ok to work from home. That was denied to me. I was on Unpaid leave since July till I can apply for maternity leave. Medical certificates as asked were submitted.
All my company assests were asked to surrender even if I was on leave.
Over email I was ensured that I will be entitled to Maternity Benefit as per the law. Now in my 7th month when I applied for maternity leave it was said to apply 8 weeks before due date. Then I was sent a letter to join within 2 days in my 7th month. I again reiterated that my medical conditions do not allow me to travel since beginning. To this the employer has sent me a termination letter stating they cannot keep my position vacant for long so terminating me.
How fair is that when I have been informing them about the condition and they stated in mail I would get the maternity benefit.
What should i do now , assuming employer has lots of power an authority to play around?

From India, New Delhi
Since the poster seems to have been employed in managerial capacity, I restrict my reply to that of her maternity benefit under the Maternity Benefit Act,1961 only. Relatively every employer has lots of power and authority over his/her own employees. It does not mean such a power and authority makes an employer above the laws of the land. So far as the unilateral termination of the services of a pregnant employee by the employer is concerned, sec.12 of the Maternity Benefit Act,1961 imposes certain restrictions. Section 12(2)(a) of the Act makes it clear that the discharge or dismissal of a woman at any time during her pregnancy shall not have the effect of depriving her of the maternity benefit or medical bonus. In the event of any such deprivation of the maternity benefit, section 12(2)(b) enables the employee to file an appeal before the Authority under the Act (normally an inspector) within 60 days.
From India, Salem
Thank you so much for the response over this. I agree with the fact that no employer has the right to go against the laws. I have proceeded for filing a legal notice and soon will also take this up in Labor office. However apart from the compensation , Can I file a case of harrassment during pregnancy, because I had to go through a lot of turmoil and stress when doctors advised me bed rest and no stress environment.
From India, New Delhi
Any update on the Progress of the Dispute/Claim?
From India, New Delhi
I sent them a legal notice to withdraw the termination letter and provide me with the maternity benefit.However they did not respond to it. Later I filed a complaint in Labor office - Pune, a meeting happened with thier representative but they denied all allegations.Due to current COVID -19 situation case is on hold , but I am going ahead with the civil court for my right.
From India, New Delhi
Dear Madam,
Thanks for the update.Reg Denial of Maternity Benefit approach, Labour Dept concerned.You have not specified about your Designation, Salary Drawn, Jobs & responsibilities, Appointment Terms & Conditions etc to determine appropriate forum seeking Relief for illegal Termination.Nevertheless, Pl post developments for the information of members
Best Wishes

From India, New Delhi
I did mention in my first post, designation is Manager - HR , I was heading the HR department and was reporting directly to the owner /MD of the company.
I was a confirmed employee and as per my appointment letter and all legal aspects I was entitled to maternity benefit. I was sharing medical certificates with them on monthly basis. I have all the communication with them over email as well wherein, they wrote that I shall be entitled to the maternity benefit as per law. However in my 7th month of pregnancy they simply sent a letter over email terminating my services stating they cannot keep my position vacant for long. I was on unpaid leave since July 2019. It was totally unprofessional and illegal for them to act in such a way. Hence post lockdown I shall be taking the case further.

From India, New Delhi
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