Rights of Employees in India

Posted On : April 7, 2022
Rights of Employees in India
Employee protection in India or any other country is paramount. Reason being that the economy of a country depends upon the working sector only. Rights of employees in India should be known to everyone since the laws are supposed to be known since the day they come into force. If the employees themselves do not protect their own rights, they will anyhow be subject to exploitation one or the other day. Rather than having a single Employee Protection Act, India has numerous such legislations. Know the laws in India which promote the rights of employees in India effectively.
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When it comes to rights of employees in India, it is like pressing the sore point of people in the job sector. More particularly, if rights of private sector employees in India are mentioned, those employees do not see anything coming in the list apart from a timely payment of salary. This lack of awareness could be one of the many reasons that employees in the private sector are exploited. This is one of the biggest reasons why knowing the rights of employees in India is important, specifically for those working in the private sector. It is better to know the laws, and if there is a dispute at work, consult with an employment lawyer.

Know the Rights of Employees in India

Some people look for Employee Act in India when there is some kind of exploitation or an apparent harm to their employee rights. Very few people know that there are numerous laws which promote rights of employees in India, most of which are neutral to government jobs and those in private organisations. Given below is a list of some of the major legislations which grant more than 10 rights of employees in India. 

Laws Governing Rights of Employees in India

  1. Minimum Wages Act, 1948 - Governs the minimum wage of workmen depending upon the state, category, skills, industry, etc.
  2. Payment of Wages Act, 1936 - The Act makes it mandatory for the employer to get employee’s salary credited before 7th day of the month that follows. It governs salary deductions as well. 
  3. Equal Remuneration Act, 1976 - The Act ensures there is no discrimination on the basis of sex, race, color, etc. among employees who are responsible for same kind of work or having same qualification. It promotes equal payment towards the same work for employees.
  4. Provident Fund Act, 1952 - Employee provident fund and pension are governed by this Act. It lays for deduction of 12% over the sum of basic salary + Dearness allowance. Usually, the employer deducts 12+1% in the name of insurance or other deductions
  5. Employee State Insurance Act, 1948 - Lays provisions for medical insurance of employees and their family.  It also includes accidental insurance of the employees. Deductions include .75% on part of the employee whereby the employer contributes 3.25% which makes up a total of 4% of the wages. It has an upper limit of Rs 21,000.
  6. Bonus Act, 1965 - As per the provisions of this Act, the employer has to give an employee a bonus of at least 8.33% of the wages to employees. 
  7. Gratuity Act, 1972 - In case an employee works for 5 or more years in the same company, such an employee is entitled to a gratuity sum equal to 15 days for all those years for an amount equitable to the last drawn salary of such employee.
  8. Professional Tax Act, 1987 - This Act is governed as per the Article 276 of the Constitution of India. However, it applies to a few states in India. There is a deduction limit of Rs 2500 per annum. 
  9. Labour Welfare Fund - State legislations for funds to avail some basic facilities to the workmen.
  10. Shop and Establishment Act - This Act governs the leaves and holidays on an annual basis. The laws under this Act vary among the states. 
  11. Industrial Disputes Act, 1947 - Governs the relationship between employer and employee. It lays the rules to be followed at the time of establishment and termination of an employment. 
  12. Maternity Benefit Act, 1961 - Grants maternity leave of a minimum of 26 weeks. Such a female employee is rightful to receive paid leave during these 26 weeks. 

Rights of Government Employees in India

People are more interested in the government sector when it comes to employment. There are jokes about a newly promoted Google CEO whose mother is yet to be satisfied with his job since he lacks a government job. This is the real craze of government jobs in India. Some of the various perks in a government job are as follows:

  • Fundamental Rights - Working in the government sector specifically saves the various fundamental rights granted in the part 3 of Constitution of India, 1950 against the state.
  • Salary - Although the salary paid on a monthly basis might not be surprising figures, it depends upon the designation. But the additional allowances, bonuses, quarterly or variable allowances, etc. add up to a good amount which are rights of government employees in India.
  • Trade Union - In various professions, there are unions which speak up for protection of rights working in a particular designation. This gives voice against any kind of exploitation.
  • Reservation - There are reservation policies which grant reservation of seats for particular classes of the society included in the rights of employees. Benefits can be availed in the government sector 
  • Working Hours - While the private sector employees keep ranting about the unending working hours, government employees are usually very strict when it comes to office hours. Their overtime is paid separately as well.
  • Gazetted Holidays - The list of holidays in government is one of the best rights of employees in India.
  • Maternity Benefits - There is more security for women as government sector employees in India who wish to embrace motherhood while still keeping up with their careers. 
  • Job Security - You can not be fired as casually as it is in the private sector. In order to be suspended from services, the rights of government employees in India working in the government sector include in-depth explanation by authorities regarding the misconduct on part of the employee. 

Rights of Private Sector Employees in India

The rights of employees in India working in the private sector organisations are as follows:

  • Right to Employment Agreement - Once you join a company in the private sector, there has to be some written document which assures the employment contract between the employee and his/ her employer. It is an agreement to employment between both the parties. The employer can not deny an appointment or offer letter to a newly joined employee.
  • Health and Safety - There are laws which ensure safe and healthy work conditions for the employees. In case the employer does not ensure the same, it is the right of employees in India to complain against the same regardless of whether it is a private sector organisation.
  • National Holidays - In India, there are so many holidays for religious festivals and days of national importance. But a few of them are entitled for private sector employees as well. The rights of private sector employees in India include a list of such holidays. 
  • Leave Policy - There is a minimum number of leaves which an employee can avail on a monthly basis. The number varies as per the applicable State laws. 
  • Maternity Benefits - Not only the rights of government employees in India but the private employee rights in India also include maternity benefits. In case the employer denies and fires the employee on maternity basis, contact lawyers for maternity issue.
  • Minimum Wages - Rights of employees in India include payment of minimum wages set by the State governments. No employee, regardless of the sector can be paid less than the said minimum wage amount.
  • Working Hours and Overtime - Although there are rights of private sector employees in India to work as per the fixed hours. They also have the right to get paid for overtime if any. It is not usually heard of in practicality since the employees do not raise their voice in this regard.
  • Rights against Sexual Harassment - Where there are more than 10 employees in an organization, there has to be a complaint redressal body for matters related to sexual harassment of women at workplace. If the employer does not redress the matter without any bias, it is better to hire a lawyer for sexual harassment at workplace.


It is critical for people engaged in an employment to know the rights of employees in India. It is crucial for both the employers and employees. The difference between rights of government employees in India and rights of private sector employees in India is pretty obvious by now. Uphold and fight for rights of employees in India and help establish a happy work culture.

Written By:
Ridhi Khurana

Ridhi Khurana


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