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Section 10 – Contract Labour Act, 1970

Contract Labour Act, 1970





(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, the appropriate Government may, after consultation with the Central Board or, as the case may be, a State Board, prohibit, by notification in the Official Gazette, employment of contract labour in any process, operation or other work in any establishment.


(2) Before issuing any notification under sub-section (1) in relation to an establishment, the appropriate Government shall have regard to the conditions of work and benefits provided for the contract labour in that establishment and other relevant factors, such as – (a) whether the process, operation or other work is incidental to, or necessary for the industry, trade, business, manufacture or occupation that is carried on in the establishment;


(b) whether it is of perennial nature, that is to say, it is of sufficient duration having regard to the nature of industry, trade, business, manufacture or occupation carried on in that establishment;


(c) whether it is done ordinarily through regular workmen in that establishment or an establishment similar thereto;


(d) whether it is sufficient to employ considerable number of whole-time workmen.


Explanation : If a question arises whether any process or operation or other work is of perennial nature, the decision of the appropriate Government thereon shall be final.




Andhra Pradesh. —For section 10, substitute the following section, namely:—


“ 10. Prohibition of employment of contract labour. —(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, employment of contract labour in core activities of any establishment if prohibited:


Provided that the principal employer may engage contract labour or a contractor to any core activitiy, if—


(a) the normal functioning of the establishments is such that the activity is ordinarily done through contractors; or


(b) the activities are such that they do not require full time workers for the major portion of the working hours in a day or for longer periods, as the case may be;


(c) any sudden increase of volume of work in the core activity which needs to be accomplished in a specified time.


(2) Designated authority. —(a) The ‘appropriate Government’ may by notification in the Official Gazette appoint a designated authority to advise them on the question whether any activity of a given establishment is a core activity or otherwise;


(b) if a question arises as to whether any activity of an establishment is a core activity or otherwise the aggrieved party may make an application in such a form and manner as may be prescribed, to the appropriate Government for decision;


(c) the appropriate Government may refer any question by itself or such application made to them by any aggrieved party as prescribed in clause (b), as the case may be, to the designated authority, which on the basis of relevant material in its possession, or after making such an enquiry as deemed fit shall forward the report to the appropriate Government, within a prescribed period and thereafter the appropriate Government shall decide the question within the prescribed period.”


[ Vide Contract Labour (Regulation and Abolition) (Andhra Pradesh) (Amendment) Act, 2003 (Andhra Pradesh Act 10 of 2003), sec. 4.]


Maharashtra. —In section 10, in sub-section (1), after the words “Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act”, insert the words “but, subject to the provisions of clause (c) of sub-section (5) of section 1”.


[ Vide The Contract Labour (Regulation and Abolition) (Maharashtra Amendment) Act, 2005 (Maharashtra Act 13 of 2006), sec. 3 (w.e.f. 2-5-2006).]




(i) Industrial Court have no jurisdiction to determine the question as to whether the contract labour should be abolished or not, the same being within the exclusive domain of appropriate Government; Steel Authority of India Ltd . v. Union of India , AIR 2006 SC 3229.


(ii) On issuance of prohibition under section 10(1) of the Act prohibiting employment of contract labour or otherwise, in an industrial dispute brought before it by any contract labour in regard to conduct of service Industrial Adjudicator will have to be interpose on the ground of having undertaken to produce any given result for the establishment or for supply of contract labour for work of the establishment under a genuine contract or is a mere ruse/camouflage legislations so as to deprive the workers of the benefits thereunder; Rajesh Kumar v. Union of India , 2003 (2) LLJ 102 (Del).


(iii) It is only the appropriate Government which has the authority to abolish contract labour system and not the court including the industrial adjudicator; Gujarat Electricity Board v. Hind Mazdoor Sabha, 1995 LLR 552 (SC).


(iv) The primary object of the Act is to stop exploitation of contract labourers by contractor or establishment. The Act does not purport to abolish contract labour in its entirety; R.K. Panda v. Steel Authority of India, (1994) 69 FLR 256 (SC).


(v) Provisions of section 10(2) of this Act are mandatory. Amendment Act No. 14 of 1988 cannot have retrospective effect; FCI Class IV Employees’ Union v. F.C.I., (1994) II LLJ 102 (P & H).


(vi) Consultation with the Central Advisory Board is mandatory; Tata Refractories Ltd. v. Union of India, (1992) II LLJ 810 (Ori).


(vii) The Act does not provide for a total abolition of contract labour but it provides for abolition of contract labour in appropriate cases; Deena Nath v. National Fertilizers Ltd., 1992 LLR 46 (SC).


(viii) The power of the appropriate Government under section 10 is not affected or curtailed in any manner by section 119 of the Factories Act, 1948; Government of Andhra Pradesh v. Bhadarachalam Paper Board Ltd., (1990) 76 FJR 58 (AP).


(ix) It is the scrutiny of individual establishment which is contemplated by section 10 of the Act. There is no hostile discrimination; National Organic Chemical Industry Ltd. v. State of Maharashtra, (1989) II LLN 817 (Bom).



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