The much anticipated move by the Government of lowering the
threshold for the applicability of the provident fund regulations
has finally been given effect. The Government recently notified the
amendment to the Employees Provident Fund and Miscellaneous
Provisions Act, (EPF) 1952 by making it applicable to all
establishments having at least 10 employees. Earlier, the EPF Act
was applicable to only those establishments which had 20 or more
employees. Thus many companies were able to exclude themselves from
the reach of this beneficial legislation. Establishments with 10 or
more employees will now be under an obligation to ensure
registration, make statutory deductions, contributions and ensure
other related compliances as stipulated under the EPF Act. The
social security benefits provided under the Employees State
Insurance Corporation (ESIC) Act are already applicable to
establishments with 10 or more employees. Therefore this action
brings parity with the ESIC Act with regard to coverage and would
help in unifying the social security efforts of the Government.
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The presumption by the employer that the employee is not interested in the job when he/she is absent from work for a long duration without the authorization of the employer, has been considered as reasonable.
The constitutional principle of ‘equal pay for equal work' has been upheld by the Supreme Court of India ("SC") with respect to temporary employees' vis-à-vis permanent employees in the government sector.
On 31 December 2015 the President gave his assent to certain amendments to the Payment of Bonus Act, 1965. The amendments have increased the wage threshold for determining applicability of the Act from INR 10,000 to INR 21,000 per month.
The Payment of Bonus Act, 1965 provides for the payment of statutory bonus to eligible employees. The bonus payable is to be determined on the basis of profits or on the basis of production or productivity of the establishment.
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