BalochistanMinimum WageComments on three Labour Laws made by the Government of Balochistan

September 17, 20210

Room # 3, Falaknuma Bldg.
39 Abdullah Haroon Rd.
Karachi, 74700
Phone: (021)32727266

Date: 17-09-2021

Circular Number: C-193

Comments on three Labour Laws made by the Government of Balochistan

After the 18th amendment of the Constitution of Pakistan abolishing the Concurrent List, all subjects of the Concurrent List, including the Labour have gone exclusively in the jurisdiction of the provinces and, thereafter, the Provincial Governments make Labour Laws for the establishments functioning in their respective Provinces.

Our comments on the three Labour Laws made by the Government of Balochistan are as under:-


Balochistan Factories Act, 2021
is the copy of the Federal Factories Act, 1934 with major amendments. Factories Act is the mother of the labour laws and very extensive, requiring exhaustive comments. We shall explain major changes only in our comments:

  1. In definition of Manufacturing process, section 2 (h) composing types for printing, printing letterpress, desktop printing, printing by any latest methods or device, lithography, photogravure or other similar process or book binding, constructing, reconstructing, repairing, refitting, finishing or breaking up of ships or vessels, preserving or storing any article in cold storage have been added which as per se has nothing to do with the manufacturing process.

  2. Definition of the worker, section 2 (i), has been changed and now it is difficult to understand who is a worker and who is not.

  3. In section 2 (j), the definition of the factory, the applicability of the Act has been amended from 10 to 5 or more workers, which is not possible for any small establishment to give such huge facilities to its workers.

  4. Definition of the occupier, section 2(m) has completely been changed.
  1. By section 10(4) of the Act, every Deputy Commissioner or any other officer of his rank shall be an Inspector for his district in addition to the Inspector notified by the Govt. under section 10(1) of the Act.
  1. By section 12, Special and vast Powers given to the Factory Inspector to Monitor Hazardous Occupations and Safety Measures while inspection of the factory.
  1. By section 14, huge Responsibilities imposed on the occupier and manufacturers towards the Occupational Safety and Health standards, which are practically impossible to implement by the small factory owners.
  1. Sections 15 to 29 are about occupational safety and health, sections 30 to 55 are about the specific safety and sections 56 to 74 are about the restrictions on working hours of adult workers with certain changes and additions.
  1. Section 68 added about further restrictions on the employment of women beyond 7.00 p.m. and section 69 added for Sexual Harassment of the women.
  1. By 72 of the Act, obligation to work on overtime, worker’s option without any compulsion added.
  1. By section 76(1), annual holiday has been raised from 14 to 20 days in a year and un-availed annual leave accumulation has been raised from 14 to 60 days during the subsequent period of twelve months, which cannot be possible as 20 days annual leave in a year cannot be 60 days in subsequent period of twelve months. Leave encashment has also been modified.
  1. By section 81(1), casual leave has been raised from 10 to 15 days with full pay in a year.
  1. By section 81(2), sick  leave has been raised from 16 days half pay or 8 days full pay to 20 days full pay in a year subject to the condition of producing the certificate of a qualified medical doctor who is a registered medical  practitioner  or  of  doctor  of  a  Social  Security hospital  of  dispensary  if  the  worker  is  registered  under  the  Employees  Social  Security Scheme.
  1. By section 83, quarantine leave has been introduced if a worker contracts a contagious disease.
  1. In penalties, section 96 to 104, various fines have been increased on various acts of violation under the Act including imprisonment of one month on obstruction of an inspector.
  1. Exemption has been provided by section 111 of the Act that provision of section 14 (Occupational Safety and Health standards), clause (b) of subsection (1) of section-15 (weekly washing of work room), sections-16 (disposal of wastes and effluents), 17 (ventilation and temperature), 18 (dust and fume), 21 (lighting), 22 (drinking water), 23 (latrine and urinals), 25 (precautions against contagious or infectious disease) and sub-section (3) of Section 53 (certificate of stability) shall not apply in to any factory wherein not more than 19 workers are working.
  1. Two new provisions have been added section 112, internal inspection system and section 113, protection against discrimination.      
    1. Balochistan Minimum Wages Act, 2021 is the copy of the Minimum Wages Ordinance, 1961 (like other provincial Laws on the same subject) with certain amendments.

    2. In definitions, section 2 of the Act, Commercial Concern 2(e), Employer 2(f), Industrial undertaking 2(h), job appraisal scheme 2(i), minimum wage 2(j) and wages 2(k) added/modified with certain amendments.
    1. Establishment of the Minimum Wage Board, section 3, eight members to be appointed by the Government, amongst them three members represent workers and three members represent employers and in these 6 members two at least women. When the Board Recommends the minimum rates of wages for workers with respect to particular industries under section 5, two members represent the employers and workers connected with the industry or business concerned.
    1. In Periodical review of minimum rates of wages, section 7(1), a new proviso added which gives power to the Board that the Board, on a reference received from the Government, shall periodically review the minimum rates of wages of workers under this Act that may usually be after three years’ period from the date of earlier review.
    1. In violation to pay wages at a rate below the minimum rate of wages, section 8 of the Act, fine has been raised Rs. 25000/= and 50,000/=.
    1. Limits of filing appeal (on the order of the Authority) from the employer and the employee have been amended by section 9(6)(a) and (b).
    1. A new provision added by section 17 of the Act about Protection against discrimination.

    1. Balochistan Shops and Establishment Act, 2021 is the copy of the Shops and Establishment Ordinance, 1969 (like other provincial Laws on the same subject) with certain amendments.

    2. In definitions of Commercial Establishments, section 2(f) (v), added private educational institutions, clinics, laboratories and security agencies run for commercial purposes.
    1. In definitions of factory, section 2(l), Factories Act, 1934 wrongly mentioned instead of new Act of Balochistan Factories Act, 2021.
    1. In definitions of Retail trade, section 2(u) modified.
    1. In definitions, section 2(v), Schedule added.
    1. In definitions of wages, section 2(y), instead of referring to the definition of wages given in the Payment of Wages Act, 1936, copied the definition of wages in this Act, which is better to understand.
    1. In definition, a new clause 2(2) added which says that, “The words and expression not defined in this Act shall have the same meanings, as assigned to them in the Industrial and Commercial Employment (Standing Orders) Ordinance, 1968 (Ordinance VI of 1968) or any other labour enactment having bearing on this Act, for the time being in force”. This clause wrongly used the old law 1968 instead of Balochistan Industrial and Commercial Employment (Standing Orders) Act, 2021.
    1. A new provision has been added, section 5(2) (3), for appointment of an authority to entertain the grievance of persons employed in establishments mentioned from 5(2) (a) to (h), exempted from the weekly off (section 6) and opening/closing timing (section 7).
    1. In weekly holidays, section 6, new provisions <6(4) & (5)> have been added which give options to observe weekly off either on Friday or Sunday with some conditions.
    1. In opening and closing hours of establishments, section 7, two new provision added, section 7 (4) that no young person shall be employed in any establishment between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. without permission of the government and section 7(5) that woman worker shall be allowed to work in an establishment beyond 7:00 pm with her prior consent subject to the mandatory arrangement of transportation
      facility of pick and drop by the employer at the doorstep or the nearest possible place to the residence of such worker except where a separate hostel facility is provided by the employer at the premises.
    1. In claim arising out of delay in payment of wages, section 12, employee can file claim in respect of delayed or withheld wages within six months (instead of 4 months) before the Authority appointed by the government and a proviso added in section 12(2), which gives power to the Authority to admit application if file delay up to 9 months if sufficient cause exist. Section 12(3) empowers the Authority for penalty up to the 5% of the wages withheld or delayed. Section 12(6) amended the appeal to the Labour Court instead of District Court as provided in the Shops and Establishment Ordinance, 1969. Limits of filing appeal (on the order of the Authority) from the employer and the employee have been amended by section 12(6)(a) and (b).
    1. Four new provision added, section, 21 (protection against discrimination), section 22 (job appraisal scheme), section 23, (washing & toilets facilities) and section 24 (removal of difficulties) have been added.
    1. In registration of the establishment, section 28, registration fee has not been mentioned.
    1. In penalties, section 31 of the Act, various fines have been increased in various acts of violation under the Act including imprisonment (on second or any subsequent offence) of one month on obstruction of inspector and three months on contravenes of any provision of the Act.

You are requested to carefully pursue the provisions above three laws and may consult your Labour Laws Consultant on the matter.

For M/s S. M. Yaqoob


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