First National Commission on Labour

The first National Labour Commission was established on 24th December, 1966 under the Chairmanship of Dr. Gajendragadkar. The objective was to study and review the living conditions of labour and the labour legislations since 1947. In pursuance of this legacy which involves industrial relations and economy, the Second National Labour Commission was brought into existence after a long gap of 33 years based on the recommendation of Indian labour Conference held in September, 1992. It consisted of ten members.

While developing the framework for its recommendation, the Commission took into account, the emerging economic environment involving rapid technological change, globalisation of economy, liberalisation of trade and industry, need for bringing existing laws in tune with future labour market needs and demands. Study groups were formed for detailed study and review of various laws, umbrella legislation for unorganised sector workers, globalisation and its impact, social security, women and child labour, skill development training and workers education.

Recommendations of National commission on labour on Industrial Relations

The Commission recommended new labour laws on labour management relation, wages, occupational safety and health, small enterprise, hours of work, leave and other working condition of work place, child labour and unorganized sector etc.

The Commission suggested that there is no need for any wage board for fixing wage rates for workers in any industry. It opined that each state or union territory should have the authority to fix minimum rates of wage not less than national level. It also recommended linking of child labour with education by enactment of Child Labour (Prevention and Education) Act.

The Commission recommended that there should be a policy framework in the unorganized sector that ensures the generation and protection of jobs, access to jobs, protection against the exploitation of poverty and lack of organization, protection against arbitrary or whimsical dismissal and denial of minimum wages. It also suggested that a system of welfare should include access to compensation for injuries suffered while engaged in work, provident fund, medical care, pension benefit, maternity benefits, child care shelter and old age support.

  1. Compulsory adjudication of disputes should be used only as a last resort.
  2. Both organizationally and financially, trade unions need to be strengthened.
  3. Workers’ education should be intensified for building up internal union leaderships and making workers more knowledgeable and conscious about their rights and obligations.
  4. Popularized should be the idea of one plant or one industry.
  5. Government should encourage the parties to settle their industrial disputes by negotiation and bipartite consultation.

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