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Govt mulling change in Factories Act to allow women in night shift

Rajya Sabha

A proposal to amend the Factories Act is under active consideration of the Centre to include permission for employment of women

Rajya SabhaNew Delhi: A proposal to amend the Factories Act is under active consideration of the Centre to include permission for employment of women for night shift in factories and enhance the limit of overtime hours, the Rajya Sabha was told today.

In a written reply, Minister of State for Mines, Steel and Labour and Employment Vishnu Deo Sai said a proposal for amendment in the Factories Act, 1948 is under active consideration of the government to make it more compatible to the requirement of the present scenario in industrial sector.

Amendment of Section 66 of the Act relates to permission for employment of women for night shift for a factory or group or class or description of factories with adequate safeguards for safety and provision of transportation till the doorstep of their residence, he said.

This apart, amendment of sections 64 and 65 of the Act to enhance the limit of overtime hours from the present limit of 50 hours per quarter to 100 hours per quarter is also under consideration. The amendment also proposes this limit to be increased to a maximum of 125 hours per quarter in public interest with the approval of state government, he added.

Prohibition of employment of pregnant women and persons with disabilities on or near machinery in motion and near cotton openers and reduction in the eligibility criteria for entitlement of annual leave with wages from 240 days to 90 days are part of the proposal.

Pointing out that state governments are empowered to make rules under the Factories Act in the present scenario, the Minister said it is now proposed to empower the central government also to make rules under the Act on some of the important provisions.

PTI

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