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Do you think Industrial relations and organizational justice in India are connected? If yes, how? Can you cite few examples to justify?
From India, Bengaluru

One of the end products of IR is organisational justice in the sense that the issues of grievance and consequently justice get highlighted in the IR forums and gets resolved in the process. There would be several individual issues as well as collective issues which are raised by the trade unions and are addressed through the IR processes. The ultimate result on resolution of the issues is that organisation has ensured justice or in other words injustice has been removed.

The examples of individual justice could be pay anomaly (meaning a junior employee drawing more salary than a senior employee in the same post) or promotion related issues (like favouritism or supersession etc) disciplinary action etc. There could be collective issues like wage revision, relative discrepancy across different cadres, bonus etc. The essence of IR is the bargaining process and the process ensures relative justice for the parties and it leads to a conducive work environment.

If the IR processes do not fructify and the feeling of injustice prevails in the organisation, it is only a time bomb waiting to explode at the right time. If more details are needed, then you can approach me

From India, Mumbai

Dear Sunanda-Bhattacharya,

Since the very concept " organizational Justice " refers to employee perception of fairness in the work place, certainly it is connected and influential with industrial relations not only in India but everywhere organizations exist. What is meant here by employee perception is how the employees judge the behaviour of the organization and how this behaviour is related to employees' basic attitudes and reciprocal behaviours towards the organization. It comprises of three main forms viz., distributive, procedural and interactional.

The sense of distributive justice emanates from the employees' belief that both tangible outcomes like pay and intangible outcomes like positive feed back. In short, when employees believe that they are paid or treated equally, then it results in distributive justice.

Whereas distributive justice focuses on outcomes, procedural justice focuses on the fairness of the decision making process or processes that leads to these outcomes. The fairness of the procedures are determined by the aspects of consistency, accuracy. ethicality and absence of bias in the very process of decision-making.

Interactional justice focuses on the considerate treatment meted out to the employees when decisions are made and thus it gets broken down into interpersonal justice qualified by respectful and courteous treatment to employees and informational justice marked by effective communication of the decisions affecting the employees.

In the Indian context, the strikes and agitations by workers marked by violence resulting in loss of precious lives of top level managerial personnel, criminal prosecution of a no of workers and losses to the tune of tens of crores of rupees to be cited as examples are the ones in Honda Motor Cycles and Scooters India, Gurgeon(2005), Graziao Transmissione (2008), Mahindra & Mahindra (2009), PRICOL, Coimbatore (2009) and Maruti Suzuki, Manesar Plant (2010).

If you analyze the above cases most of them relate to demands of temporary/ contract workmen for higher wages or regularization and one or two might be due to union-management tussle on matters of discipline or recognition. Such a sordid state of affairs is indicative of the perception of disbelief by certain section of workmen about their respective managements.

After all ideal industrial relations refers to the collective, amicable and fair determination of basic employment conditions and their effective implementation only. Therefore, scuttling unionization, casualisation or contractualisation of perennial jobs for the sake of easy hire and fire, non-payment of monetary compensation like wages, bonus etc., for jobs of same or similar nature on par with permanent employees of the organization are indicative of organizational injustice that can have an adverse impact on industrial relations. To achieve overall organizational justice promoting cordial industrial relations in the modern era, Indian managers need a lot of unlearning and the the employees need a lot of learning.

From India, Salem
Nagarkar Vinayak L

Dear Madam,

IR and organisational justice are not only intrinsically connected but also hugely impact each other.

In fact , they are two sides of the same coin.

The end goal of IR is peace and harmonious relationship and that of organisational justice is equity and fairness in the matters of wages, opportunities, caring and humane treatment and to create lasting bond through positive policies, systems and procedures.

When both are in sync with each other, organisations continuously achieve peak productivity, profitability and team work while employees feel satisfied and give their best.

When there is a breakdown in the relationship, results are disastrous manifesting in strikes,lockouts, violence and closure. Several examples are cited by our learned colleagues, which underline the need for continuously maintaining well- oiled employer- employee relationship and delivery of organisational justice.


Vinayak Nagarkar

HR and Employee Relations Consultant

From India, Mumbai
@KK!HR @Umakanthan53 @Nagarkar Vinayak L Many thanks everyone for your insights, this really helped me understand this subject better. Really appreciate :) Regards Sunanda Bhattacharya
From India, Bengaluru
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