Cinemas, malls may soon be open 24x7

The Cabinet on Wednesday considered a new model law that would allow malls, cinema halls, restaurants, shops, banks and other such workplaces to be open around the clock for 365 days in a year. The model law, which will now be sent to all States, would enable women to work during the night in shops and establishments with mandatory cab services and other workplace facilities for them.

Protection for women

“Women to be permitted during night shift, if the provision of shelter, rest room, ladies toilet, adequate protection of their dignity and transportation etc exists,” Labour and Employment Ministry said in a statement.

The law covers all premises — barring factories — with work related to printing, banking, insurance; stocks and shares brokerage; theatres and “any other public amusement” which is currently not covered under the Factories Act 1948. All such units that employ 10 or more workers will come under this Act. For the first time, workers’ right will be protected for those working in godowns, warehouses or workplace related to packaging activities. This will bring e-commerce companies under the labour law rulebooks. However, the implementation of the approved Model Shops and Establishments (Regulation of Employment and Conditions of Services) Bill, 2016 will depend on States, as it only acts as an advisory to the State governments, which will have the option to adopt this or make changes to it according to their needs. “We will send it to the States immediately. The model law will be a readymade material for the State governments as this has taken shape after several rounds of extensive consultation within various ministries and the Cabinet,” Labour Secretary Shankar Aggarwal told The Hindu.

The model bill has provision for five paid holidays for festivals besides national holidays. Also, “highly skilled workers” in the information technology sector or bio-technology are proposed to be exempted from daily working hours of nine hours and weekly working hours of 48 hours.

“With flexibility available to retailers to open their establishment 24x7, not only thousands of additional skill jobs will be added, but it will also make the retail markets across the country very vibrant giving customers flexibility and convenience to shop anytime,” said Krish Iyer, president and CEO Walmart India.

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Printable version | Oct 19, 2021 6:34:32 PM |

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