Introduction

The Government of Maharashtra, vide notification dated 7 September 2017 (First Notification), had notified the Maharashtra Shops and Establishments (Regulation of Employment and Conditions of Service) Act, 2017 (2017 Act). The First Notification stated that the 2017 Act shall become effective from a date to be notified subsequently.

Update

The Government of Maharashtra, vide notification dated 19 December 2017 (Second Notification), has appointed the date of the Second Notification to be the date on which the provisions of the 2017 Act shall come into force. It is also essential to note that with effect from the date of the Second Notification, the erstwhile Maharashtra Shops & Establishments Act, 1948 (1948 Act) shall stand repealed. The Second Notification can be accessed here.

Comment

The 2017 Act was promulgated with the intent of facilitating ease of doing business in the State of Maharashtra, and easing the compliance requirements on organizations. Our earlier newsflash on the key aspects of the 2017 Act can be accessed here.

While the 2017 Act has introduced several business-friendly norms, the following aspects may require further clarity:

  • Minimum Statutory Notice Period: The 2017 Act does not specify the minimum statutory notice period to be issued by an employer upon terminating an employee. In contrast, the 1948 Act provided for a 30 (thirty) days’ termination notice for employees who have been in the service of the employer for not less than a year.

Exemptions under 1948 Act: Under the 1948 Act, several exemptions had been provided to specific organizations and classes of employees. Proviso (a) to Section 39 of the 2017 Act states that any, “…regulation, notification, registration or notice made, issued or given under the provisions of the [1948] Act… shall, in so far as it is not inconsistent with the provisions of the [2017] Act, be deemed to have been made, issued or given under the provisions of the [2017] Act, unless and until superseded by any appointment, order, rule, bye-law, regulation, notification or notice made, issued or given under this [2017] Act”. It is therefore unclear if these organizations will continue to enjoy these exemptions provided under 1948 Act.