Prohibition of Night-Shifts for Women in Factories, held unconstitutional

Night shift Woman

The Gujarat High Court in Mahila Utkarsh Trust v. Union of India (SCA 2984/2012 decided on 13.12.2013), discussed the constitutional validity of Section 66(1)(b) of the Factories Act, 1948, which prohibits employment of women in factories between 7pm and 6am. The Court held that the said restriction is ultra vires Articles 14, 15, 16 and 19(1)(g) of the Constitution of India and infringed the fundamental rights of a female citizen. According to the court, instead of prohibiting women’s employment in factories during night sift, the State should focus on factoring in ways through which unequal consequences of sex differences can be eliminated. However, the Court held that it will be a condition precedent upon the employer to make adequate measures for the safety and security of the female employees, who work during night hours, including provisions for safe conveyance to and fro from the workplace.

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About Thomas Geeverghese

Advocate, Ernakulam
This entry was posted in Factories Act and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Prohibition of Night-Shifts for Women in Factories, held unconstitutional

  1. Abdurahiman says:

    Dear sir,
    I am always depending your blog to update my labour law related issues. I am very happy for your timely reply even your busy hours.
    Regarding the above Court Order in connection with employment of women in factory, employer more vigilent about safe, security and safe to and fro conveyance.
    Sir, same Order will be applicable in the case of working women journalist who are need to work outside than other workers. Let me know what are the precautions should take by the employer if she work late night. Till what time she can allow to work? Liability of employer regarding her conveyance after compltion of job under Working Journalists’ Act.

    Abdurahiman

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