1. Short title, extent, commencement and application.

(1)     This Act may be called the Contract Labour (Regulation and Abolition) Act, 1970.

(2)     It extends to the whole of India.

(3)     It shall come into force on such date 1* as the Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, appoint and different dates may be appointed for different provisions of this Act.

(4)     It applies:

(a) To every establishment in which twenty or more workmen are employed or were employed on any day of the preceding twelve months as contract labour;

(b) To every contractor who employees or who employed on any day of the preceding twelve months twenty or more workmen:

Provided that the appropriate Government may, after giving not less than two months' notice of its intention so to do, by notification in the Official Gazette, apply the provisions of this Act to any establishment or contractor employing such number of workmen less than twenty as may be specified in the notification.

(a) It shall not apply to establishments in which work only of an intermittent or casual nature is performed.

(b) If a question arises whether work performed in an establishment is of an intermittent or casual nature, the appropriate Government shall 1 Received assent of the President on 5.9.1970; Published in Gazette of India on 7.9.1970 decide that question after consultation with the Central Board or, as the case may be, a State Board, and its decision shall be final.

Explanation.-- For the purpose of this sub-section, work performed in an stablishment shall not be deemed to be of an intermittent nature--

(i)                            if it was performed for more than one hundred and twenty days in the preceding twelve months, or
(ii)                          If it is of a seasonal character and is performed for more than sixty days in a year.

2. Definitions.

(1) In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires,--

2[(a) "appropriate Government" means,--

(i) in relation to an establishment in respect of which the appropriate Government under the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947 (14 of 1947), is the Central Government, the Central Government;

(ii) in relation to any other establishment, the Government of the State in which that other establishment is situated;]

(b) a workman shall be deemed to be employed as "contract labour" in or in connection with the work of an establishment when he is hired in or in connection with such work by or through a contractor, with or without the knowledge of the principal employer;

(c) "contractor", in relation to an establishment, means a person who undertakes to produce a given result for the establishment, other than a mere supply of goods of articles of manufacture to such establishment, through contract labour or who supplies contract labour for any work of the establishment and includes a sub-contractor;

(d) "controlled industry" means any industry the control of which by the Union has been declared by any Central Act to be expedient in the public interest;

(e) "establishment" means--

(i) any office or department of the Government or a local authority, or

(ii) any place where any industry, trade, business, manufacture or occupation is carried on; 2 Subs. by Act 14 of 1986, s. 2 (w.e.f. 28.1.1986).

(f) "prescribed" means prescribed by rules made under this Act;

(g) "principal employer" means--

(i) in relation to any office or department of the Government or a local authority, the head of that office or department or such other officer as the Government or the local authority, as the case may be, may specify in this behalf,

(ii) in a factory, the owner or occupier of the factory and where a person has been named as the manager of the factory under the Factories Act, 1948 (63 of 1948) the person so named,

(iii) in a mine, the owner or agent of the mine and where a person has been named as the manager of the mine, the person so named,

(iv) in any other establishment, any person responsible for the supervision and control of the establishment.

Explanation.--For the purpose of sub-clause (iii) of this clause, the expressions "mine", "owner" and "agent" shall have the meanings respectively assigned to them in clause (j), clause (l) and clause (c) of subsection (1) of section 2 of the Mines Act, 1952 (35 of 1952);

(h) "wages" shall have the meaning assigned to it in clause (vi) of section 2 of  the Payment of Wages Act, 1936 (4 of 1936);

(i) "workman" means any person employed in or in connection with the work of any establishment to do any skilled, semiskilled or un-skilled manual, supervisory, or clerical work for hire or reward, whether the terms of employment be express or implied, but does not include any such person--

(A) who is employed mainly in a managerial or administrative capacity;


(B) who, being employed in a supervisory capacity draws wages exceeding five hundred rupees per mensem or exercises, either by the nature of the duties attached to the office or by reason of the powers vested in him, functions mainly of a managerial nature; or

(C) who is an out-worker, that is to say, a person to whom any articles or materials are given out by or on behalf of the Principal employer to be made up, cleaned, washed, altered, ornamented, finished, repaired, adapted or otherwise processed for sale for the purposes of the trade or business of the principal employer and the process is to be carried out either in the home of the out-worker or in some other premises, not being premises under the control and management of the principal employer.

(2) Any reference in this Act to a law, which is not in force in the State of Jammu and Kashmir, shall, in relation to that State, be construed as a reference to the corresponding law, if any, in force in that State.


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