Dear Sirs,
Greetings to All.
We seek your valuable opinion on the following issues:
After Covid 19 Lock down our Factory has converted the regular 3 shifts into 2 shifts and contract labourers are working for 12 hours per day. It is permissible as per present Factories Act.
Regards,
Ganapathy V

From India
Dear Ganapathy,
What is the logic of converting three shifts into two shifts? You could have explained that. Prima facie, I can say that the arrangement is not allowed under the Factories Act, however, the legal experts of this forum will give a right answer to your query.
Nevertheless, as a training professional who conducts the training programmes on the subjects related to Quality and Production Management, I can say that if you stretch the workers beyond eight hours, then there is a risk of higher job errors in the extended hours. When workers are tired, their concentration level drops. Therefore, a higher number of quality non-compliances arising out of workers' slackness could increase the "Cost of Poor Quality". Why does your management want to increase this cost?
Additionally, what if the quality non-compliances escape the attention of QC and it gets detected at customer's end? It could dissatisfy the customer and what will be the cost of "Customer Dissatisfaction"? The cost of damage to the reputation of the company cannot be quantified.
Thanks,
Dinesh Divekar

From India, Bangalore
Dear colleague,
You can always change shift timings by giving due notice and reasons and following procedure laid down in FA/Rules.
However, by asking the contract workers to work for 12 hours at a stretch, amounts to violations of the provisions of the FA/Rules. The prescribed maximum work hours are 8 excluding lunch/ dinner recess of half an hour.
Vinayak Nagarkar
HR and Employee Relations Consultant

From India, Mumbai
Under Section 51 of the Factories Act no adult worker shall be required or allowed to work in a factory for more than forty eight hours in any week. As per Section 54 of the Factories Act no adult worker shall be required or allowed to work in a factory for more than nine hours in any day. As per SEction 56 The period of work of an adult worker in a factory shall be so arranged that inclusive of his intervals for rest under Section 55 they shall not spreadover more than ten and a half hours in any day. As per section 59 where a worker works in a factory for more than nine hours in any day or for more than forty eight hours in any week, he shall, in respect of overtime work, be entiltled to wages at the rate twice his ordinary rate of wages. Ordinary rates of wages means basic wage plus such allowances including cash equivalent of the advantage accruing through concessional sale to workers of foodgrains and other articles as the worker is for the time being entitled to, but does not include a bonus. In view of the above provisions, the worker or union can oppose twelve hours working. But factually no worker and particularly contract labours have guts to oppose as they may loose job and other workers are ready to work for twelve hours. The safety officer, if having guts to oppose management may also oppose twelve hours working. The workers can keep record of twelve hours with them duly signed by the site incharge and claim overtime after completion of work by approaching labour department or factory inspector or any trade union who is actually willing to help workers without their vested interest.
From India, Pune
We have to pay attention to both aspects - both in paper form and in reality
When it comes to paper, it is not constitutional but when it comes to the reality, most of the companies apply it, because the production of any company is not fixed in Kovid period. So in such a time, it is more sensible to work with less workers than fixed workers because fix workers will have to pay full salary even if the work is less or more, while there will be less salary for those workers but when production increases they will Salary will be increased as overtime. It will be another benefit that all the workers will have more money in their hands and there will be no shortage of workers due to less salary.

From India, Rudarpur

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