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What are the major changes with respect to the labour inspection system introduced under the new labour codes?

To ensure compliance with the provisions of the new labour codes, the appropriate Government under the labour codes may issue notification laying down a scheme for web-based inspection and calling of necessary information for inspection electronically. Labour codes also provide for a randomized selection of establishment for inspection by the Inspector-cum-Facilitator appointed for a specific jurisdiction.


Under the present regime inspectors are assigned to conduct inspections on establishments of a specific geographical location physically.


Web-based labour inspection will ensure utmost transparency as the establishments shall be selected randomly for inspection and the Inspector-cum-Facilitator shall also be assigned randomly and electronically for different establishments.

The scheme of web-based inspection is to contain the following:


•    assignment of unique identification number to each establishment and each Inspector-cum-Facilitator;

•    manner and timely uploading of inspection reports;

•    provisions for special inspection; and

•    characteristics of employment, the nature of work, and characteristics of the workplaces.

An Inspector-cum-Facilitator or a Chief Inspector-cum-Facilitator referred under the Code on Social Security, 2020, Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions Code, 2020, and the Code on Wages, 2019 is a person appointed by the appropriate Government by issuing a notification, who shall exercise the powers conferred on them related to inspection under labour codes (discussed in the following FAQ).

Broad powers of an Inspector-cum-Facilitator under the new labour codes include:


•    Inspection of establishments assigned to him and advise the compliances under the labour codes;

•    Inspection of machinery;

•    inquiry into any accidents or dangerous occurrences;

•    requiring production of any register or any other document relating to a workplace;

•    search or seizure or taking copies of any register, record, or other document;

•    taking samples of any substances found in any establishment;

•    issuing show cause notices relating to safety, health, and welfare violations; etc. Inspector-cum-Facilitator shall observe irregularities and issue orders to the employer for their rectification.

Key roles of Inspector-cum-Facilitator towards facilitation of compliances under the labour codes inter alia include:


•    advising employers on necessary compliances under labour codes;

•    conducting surveys on establishments to ensure compliance with the provisions of the labour codes;

•    receiving complaints from women employees in the event maternity benefits are not adequately provided or female employees are discharged or dismissed by the employer during maternity leave;

•    demanding from employers reasonable proof of payment of wages;

•    providing opportunity to the employer to comply with the relevant provisions by way of a written direction, and specify time period for such compliance, before initiating any prosecution proceedings;

No. Appropriate Government under the labour codes may appoint a gazetted officer to compound specific offences.

No. For the purpose of imposing penalties for contravention of specific provisions of the labour codes, the appropriate Government under the labour codes may appoint an officer not below the rank of Under Secretary to the Government of India or an officer of equivalent rank in the State Government.

Special powers include the power to issue orders in writing to the occupier of any factory when there is a serious hazard and imminent danger to the factory workers/employees or public, to prohibit the occupier from employing any person in the factory (whole or part). Provided, he may be permitted to employ minimum number of persons necessary for essential tasks of the factory till the hazard or danger is removed.


If any person’s employment is affected by the foregoing order, he shall be entitled to wages and other statutory benefits, and the occupier of the factory must provide alternative employment to him wherever possible.

The Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions Code, 2020 specifies that if any building or other construction work is dangerous to life, safety or health of building workers or the general public, the Inspector-cum-Facilitator may issue an order prohibiting any building or other construction work until measures have been taken to remove the cause of the danger to the satisfaction of Inspector-cum-Facilitator.

As per the Code on Social Security (Central) Rules, 2020, an Inspector-cum-Facilitator shall at each inspection of an establishment see whether:


•    due action has been taken on notice for compliance;

•    the register of women employees is correctly maintained;

•    there have been any cases of discharge or dismissal of a woman employee during her pregnancy;

•    amounts due with respect to maternity benefits and medical bonus have been duly paid;

•    there have been any cases of deprival of maternity benefit or medical bonus.