Ensure contractors pay workers Diwali bonus, Delhi government instructs departments

Following complaints from contractual workers and outsourced labourers, the Delhi government has written to all its departments to ensure that the contractors engaged by them pay ‘Deepawali bonus’ to the workers on time. It also said that strict action will be taken against contractors who fail to pay the bonus and the payment will be recovered as arrears of land revenue as per law.

Officials said that contractors who have employed 20 or more employees will have to pay Diwali bonus or face prosecution charges. “Non-payment of bonus is a serious issue and all the principal employers are urged upon to ensure disbursement of bonus to outsourced workers/employees by their contractors in the forthcoming Deepawali festival season,” a circular issued by the office of labour commissioner on September 15 said.

“A large number of employees/workers are engaged by various government departments GNCTD [Government of the National Capital Territory of Delhi] through contractors. Complaints regarding non-payment of bonus by the contractors have been received from outsourced workers. Payment of Bonus Act, 1965 is a central Act and is applicable on all private establishments and also establishments set up by state government like M/s ICSIL who employ 20 or more workers on any day during the accounting year,” the circular said.

Officials said that Section 10 of the Payment of Bonus Act provides for a minimum payment bonus of 8.33% of the basic and dearness allowance to the employees/workers. As per Section 19 of the Act, the bonus is payable within eight months of the close of the accounting year. However, it is customary to pay a bonus before Diwali, officials said.

“It is informed that all the contractors establishments are covered under the Payment of Bonus Act, 1965, who have employed 20 or more workers on any day during the accounting year. It is a statutory responsibility of the contractor to pay bonus to its employees,” read the circular undersigned by S C Yadav, additional secretary, labour.

The labour department further said that in case of default, “The establishments/contractors are liable for prosecution for non-payment of bonus under Section 28 of the Act and in addition to prosecution, the due amount of bonus is recoverable under 33(C)(1) of Industrial Disputes Act, 1947 and the said amount if not paid, is recovered as arrears of land revenue.”

The labour department also directed all the departments to ensure compliance of various labour laws by their respective contractors.


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