THE WAGES BOARD
- Establishment of the Minimum Wages Board.—(1) The Government shall establish a Board to be called the Minimum Wages Board.
(2) The Minimum Wages Board, hereinafter referred to in this Chapter as the Wage Board, shall consist of the following members, namely:-
- 1 (one) independent member;
- 1 (one) member representing the employers; and
- 1 (one) member representing the workers.
- For the purpose of discharging the functions mentioned in section 139, the following members shall also be included in the Wage Board, namely:—
- 1 (one) member representing the employers of the industry concerned;
- 1 (one) member representing the workers employed in the industry concerned.
- The Chairman and the other members of the Wage Board shall be appointed by the Government.
- The Chairman and the independent member of the Wage Board shall be appointed from among such persons who have adequate knowledge of industrial labour and economic conditions of the country, and who are not connected with any industry or associated with any trade union of workers or employers.
- The member representing the employers and the member representing the workers under sub-section (2) or (3) shall be appointed after considering nominations, if any, of such organizations as the Government considers to be representative organizations of such employers and workers:
Provided that if no nomination is received from the representatives of the employers or workers in spite of more than one effort, the Government may, in its own opinion, appoint such persons whom it considers to be fit to be representative of employers or workers.
- Recommendation of minimum rates of wages for certain workers.—(1) Where the Government is of the opinion that in view of the prevailing rates of wages of workers employed in any industry, it is necessary and reasonable to fix the minimum rates of wages for all or any class of workers employed in such industry, the Government may direct the Wage Board to recommend, after necessary enquiry, the minimum rates of wages for such workers or class of workers.
Explanation.—The Government may upon application made by the employer or workers or both the parties, consider fixation of minimum rates of wages for the workers employed in that industry.
- The Wage Board shall submit its recommendation to the Government within 6 (six) months of the receipt of such direction:
Provided that the Government may, on the request of the Wage Board extend the period.
- In accordance with the direction made under sub-section (1), the Wage Board may recommend the minimum rates of wages for all workers in any grade, and in such recommendation, may specify-
- the minimum rates of wage for time-work and piece-work; and
- the minimum time-rates for the workers employed on piece-work.
- The time-rates recommended by the Wage Board may be on hourly, daily, weekly or monthly basis.
- In its recommendation the Wage Board shall indicate whether the minimum rates of wage shall be adopted uniformly throughout the country or with such local variations for such areas as are specified therein.
- The minimum rates of wages fixed for the workers employed in any industry shall be re-fixed after every 5 (five) years on the direction by the Government.
- Power to declare minimum rate of wages.—(1) Upon receipt of the recommendation of the Wages Board under section 139, the Government may, by notification in the official Gazette, declare that the minimum rates of wages recommended by the Wages Board for the various workers shall, subject to such exception as may be specified in the notification, be the minimum rates of wages for such workers.
- If the Government thinks that the said recommendation is not, in any respect, equitable to the employers or the workers, it may, within 1[45 (forty five)] days of receipt of the recommendation, refer it back to the Wages Board for reconsideration, and at the time of such referring back if the Government thinks fit, it may make comments on it and give any information relating thereto.
- Where any recommendation is referred back to the Wages Board under sub-section (2), the Wages Board shall review its recommendation, considering the comments made and information given by the Government and, if necessary, shall hold further enquiry and shall submit to the Government a revised recommendation, or if the Board thinks that no amendment or change in the recommendation is necessary, it shall make a report to that effect stating reasons therefore.
- Upon receipt of the recommendation under sub-section (3), the Government may, by notification in the official Gazette, declare that the minimum rates of wages for various workers recommended under that sub-section by the Wages Board  [or modified by the Government] or according to the revised recommendation made by the Government shall, subject to such modifications and exceptions as may be specified in the notification, be the minimum rates of wage for such workers.
- Unless any date is specified in this behalf in the notification under sub-section (4), the declaration thereunder shall take effect on the date of its publication.
- Where after publication of a notification under sub-section (1) or (4) or after the minimum rates of wages declared thereunder have taken effect, it comes to the notice of the Government that there is a mistake in the minimum rates of wages so declared, it may refer the matter to the Wages Board and any such reference shall be deemed to be a reference under sub-section (2).
- The minimum rates of wages declared under this section shall be final and shall not, in any manner, be questioned, or no objection shall be raised in this behalf in any Court or before any authority.
1[140A. Special power of the Government.—Notwithstanding anything contained in sections 139, 140 and 142, the Government may, at any stage of implementation of minimum wages declared for any industrial sector in response of any special circumstances, further declare the minimum wages structure, subject to reconstitution of the Minimum Wages Board for declaration of the minimum wages structure afresh and compliance of the necessary formalities:
Provided that in such a case the Government may, if it deems necessary, by notification in the official Gazette, instead of declaring the minimum rates of wages afresh, give effect to any modification or alteration of existing rates of wages in consultation with both the workers and employers.]
- Factors to be considered in making recommendation.—In making any recommendation, the Wages Board shall take into account the cost of living, standard of living, cost of production, productivity, price of products, inflation, nature of work, risk and standard, business capability, socio-economic conditions of the country and the locality concerned and other relevant factors.
- Periodical review of minimum rates of wages.—(1) If any change in the factors specified in section 141 and other relevant factors so demand, the Wages Board shall review its recommendations once again and recommend to the Government any amendment or modification of the minimum rates of wages declared under section 140:
Provided that unless any special circumstances of a case so require, no recommendation shall be reviewed earlier than 1 (one) year or later than 3 (three) years from the date on which it was made.
- Review and recommendation under this section shall be deemed to be an enquiry and recommendation under section 139, and the provisions of this Chapter shall, as far as may be, apply in this case also.
- Establishment of Wages Board for newspaper workers.— (1) The Government may, if it thinks fit, by notification in the official Gazette, establish a separate Wage Board, to be called the Newspaper Workers Wage Board, for fixing rates of wages for newspaper workers.
(2) The said Board, hereinafter referred to in this Chapter as the Newspaper Wage Board, shall consist of a Chairman and equal number of members representating the employers of the newspaper establishments and newspaper workers, appointed by the Government.
- Fixation of wages for newspaper workers.—(1) In fixing the rates of wages for newspaper workers, the Newspaper Wages Board shall take into account the cost of living, the prevailing rates of wages of equal employment in Government, corporation and private sectors, the conditions of the newspaper industry in different regions of the country, and any other factors which the Newspaper Wages Board may think relevant.
- The Newspaper Wages Board may fix rates of wage for time-work and for piece-work.
- After fixing the rates of wages, the Newspaper Wages Board shall send its decision, as soon a practicable, to the Government.
- Publication of decision of Newspaper Wage Board.—(1) The Government shall examine the decision of the Newspaper Wages Board and shall, within a period of 3 (three) months from the date of its receipt, publish it, by notification in the official Gazette with such modifications as it may deem necessary.
(2) The decision of the Newspaper Wage Board, with modifications as aforesaid, published under sub-section (1), shall come into force with effect from such date as may be specified in the notification, and if no date is so specified, it shall come into force on the date of its publication.
- Power of the Newspaper Wages Board to fix interim rates of wages.—(1) If the Newspaper Wages Board is of the opinion that it is necessary so to do, it may, by notification in the official Gazette, fix interim rates of wages.
- Any interim rates of wages, so fixed, shall be binding on all employers of the newspaper establishments and every newspaper worker shall be entitled to wages at the rate not less than such interim rates of wages.
- Any such interim rates of wages shall remain in force until the decision of the Newspaper Wages Board comes into effect under section 145(2).
- Application to the Labour Court.—If any dispute arises as to classification or re-classification of a newspaper or a newspaper establishment due to the decision of the Newspaper Wage Board, with modifications, published under section 145(2), any person aggrieved by such decision may apply to the Labour Court for adjudication of the dispute.
- Minimum wages to be binding on all employers.—The minimum rates of wage declared under section 140 or published under section 145 shall be binding on all employers concerned and every worker shall be entitled to be paid wages at the rate not less than the rates of wages so declared or published.
- Prohibition to pay wages at a rate lower than the minimum rates of wages.—(1) No employer shall be entitled to pay any worker wages at a rate lower than the rates declared or published under this Chapter to be the minimum rates of wages.
- Nothing in sub-section (1) shall prejudice, in any way, the right of a worker to continue to receive wages at a rate higher than the minimum rates declared or published under this Chapter or other facilities, if under any agreement or award or for any other reason, he is entitled to receive wages at such higher rate or to enjoy such facilities under any customs.
The words “or according to the revised recommendation made by the Government” was substituted for the word “recommended” by section 41(a) of the Bangladesh Labour (Amendment) Act, 2013 (Act No. XXX of 2013).
Section 140Awas inserted by section 42 of the Bangladesh Labour (Amendment) Act, 2013 (Act No. XXX of 2013).