After Allahabad High Court notice on a Public Interest Litigation (PIL), the Yogi Adityanath government in Uttar Pradesh has withdrawn its recent order of raising the working hours from 8 to 12 hours per day for workers in industrial units.

The state government had passed an ordinance- The Uttar Pradesh Temporary Exemption from Certain Labour Laws Ordinance, 2020 on May 7 to suspend most of the labour laws for three years to revive the economic condition of the state, as industries and businesses have come to a halt due to the nationwide lockdown imposed to curb the spread of Coronavirus.

This is not the same ordinance and will have no impact on it as the order to increase the working hours of the Industrial labourers is a separate one by the government.

While 38 labour laws had been scrapped and only four laws that will continue to prevail are Bonded Labour System (Abolition) Act, 1976, Building and Other Construction Workers Act 1996, Section 5 of the Payment of Wages Act, 1936 and Workmen Compensation Act 1923 , along with some provisions related to women and child.

“The Uttar Pradesh Temporary Exemption from Certain Labour Laws Ordinance, 2020 aims at exempting factories, businesses, establishments and industries from the purview of all, except three labour laws and one provision of another Act for three years,” read the official statement.

Earlier, MP Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan had announced at a press conference on May 7 that the state government will exempt new factories from almost all labour laws except for a few provisions in the Factories Act, 1948 for the next 1000 days.

Gujarat’s Chief Minister Vijay Rupani  too has diluted the labour laws of the state to revive the economic activity in the state.

Other states like Rajasthan Punjab and Himachal Pradesh has also amended the Industrial Disputes Act since last month and raised the working hours from 8 to 12 hours per day.

In a bid to attract companies relocating from China, the states are coming up with this move. The central government too is trying hard to showcase India as a great destination for more than 1,000 US businesses to relocate from China in the aftermath of the Coronavirus pandemic and US President Donald Trump’s administration blaming China for the outbreak.

Many trade unions have warned of agitation against such amendments in labour laws. RSS-affiliated BMS too had threatened  BJP-ruled states like UP, Gujarat and MP who have courted controversy by diluting the labour laws of their states, reported News 18.