Industrial Disputes (Banking and Insurance Companies) Act, 1949

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The Industrial Disputes (Banking and Insurance Companies) Act (herein after referred as “the Act/ said Act”) was enacted in the year 1949 and it extends to whole of India except the state of Jammu & Kashmir. The main goal behind enactment of the said Act is to resolve industrial disputes arising out of certain Banking and Insurance Companies. The Act stands pragmatic for adjudication of Industrial Disputes pertaining to Banking and Insurance Companies which has its branches in more than one state.

The said Act has emerged to centralise the adjudication of Industrial disputes pertaining to banking and insurance companies. It abolishes the provincial enactments referred by the State Government for adjudication. Earlier, the government was segregated into three different provinces apart from the central enactments for labour and industrial disputes. Each provincial enactment was different from another. The disputes of banking and insurance companies were referred under the same enactments.  Thus, the Banking and Insurance Companies having several branches across the Country were in a state of hassle to maintain uniformity. In order to remove the difficulty in adjudication of industrial disputes relating to banking and insurance companies having branches across the country, the Central Government promulgated the said Act in order to centralise the enactment and the adjudicating Tribunal. The Central Government earlier enacted The Industrial Disputes (Banking and Insurance Companies) second ordinance, 1949 which was later repealed by the said Act. The said Act stands as the centrally passed uniform enactment for banking and insurance companies having branches all over the country. Any such Industrial disputes of banking and insurance companies are referred to competent adjudicating authorities appointed by the Central Government under this Act. Thus, the Industrial disputes arising in banking and insurance companies shall be referred to the Central Government or any competent authority appointed by the Central Government on that behalf. Under the provisions of this Act, the industrial disputes shall be centrally and uniformly adjudicated irrespective of the banking or insurance company having its branch or branches located in any state across the country.

Further, the Act depicts that no industrial disputes relating to banking and insurance company shall be referred to any Tribunal or any adjudication authority for redressal or settlement by the State Government or any such officer of the State Government. Such disputes stand out of ambit and purview of the State Government.

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The said Act also illustrates that any Industrial disputes in relation to any Banking and Insurance Company, referred by the State Government to any Tribunal or pending before any adjudication authority prior to 30th April, 1949 shall stand discontinued or withdrawn and such proceedings shall stand abated. After commencement of this Act the Central Government shall refer the Industrial Dispute under Section 10 of this Act to the Industrial Tribunal established for the purpose of adjudicating the Industrial disputes as referred in sub section (1) of this Act.

The said Act empowers Central Government to re-adjudicate an Industrial Dispute relating to Banking and Insurance Company where an award has been passed by an adjudicating Authority nominated by the State Government. It is pertinent to note that where any award or order has been passed by any adjudicating authority appointed by the State Government in relation to any Industrial Dispute pertaining to banking or Insurance company, the Central Government is at the liberty to refer such industrial dispute to the competent Authority or Industrial Tribunal established under the said Act for re- adjudication of the dispute and stay the execution of the award passed earlier and reacquire afresh award from such competent authority.  Further, where an award has been passed in accordance with the provisions of Section 15 of the said Act by the Competent authority appointed by the Central Government for the purpose of re- adjudication of the matter, the Central Government is empowered to terminate an award or part of the award passed earlier by an adjudicating authority appointed by the State Government.

The Industrial Dispute (Banking and Insurance companies) second ordinance, 1949 stands repealed.

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by Dakshaja Yeolekar.