28. INSPECTING STAFF. –
(1) The appropriate Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, appoint such persons as it thinks fit to be inspectors for the purposes of this Act, and define the local limits within which they shall exercise their powers under this Act.
(2) Subject to any rules made in this behalf, an inspector may, within the local limits for which he is appointed – (a) enter, at all reasonable hours, with such assistance (if any), being persons in the service of the Government or any local or other public authority as he thinks fit, any premises or place where contract labour is employed, for the purpose of examining any register or record or notices required to be kept or exhibited by or under this Act or rules made there under, and require the production thereof for inspection;
(b) examine any person whom he finds in any such premises or place and who, he has reasonable cause to believe, is a workman, employed therein;
(c) require any person giving out work and any workman, to give any information, which is in his power to give with respect to the names and addresses of the persons to, for and from whom the work is given out or received, and with respect to the payments to be made for the work;
(d) seize or take copies of such register, record of wages or notices or portions thereof as he may consider relevant in respect of an offence under this Act which he has reason to believe has been committed by the principal employer or contractor; and
(e) exercise such other powers as may be prescribed.
(3) Any information required to produce any document or thing or to give any information required by an inspector under sub-section (2) shall be deemed to be legally bound to do so within the meaning of section 175 and section 176 of the Indian Penal Code (45 of 1860).
(4) The provisions of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1898 (5 of 1898), shall, so far as may be, apply to any search or seizure under sub-section (2) as they apply to any search or seizure made under the authority of a warrant issued under section 98 of the said Code.
Senior officers must ensure compliance with the provisions of section 21; Salal Hydro Electric Project v. State of Jammu & Kashmir, 1984 (3) SCC 538.