The Union Minister for Labour and Employment held a meeting with the representatives of the State Governments to review the status of implementation of the recommendations of the Majithia Wage Board.
The Central Government constituted wage boards for working journalists and non-journalists newspaper employees, as and when required, as per the provisions contained in section 9 and section 13C respectively of the Working Journalists Act, 1955.
The last such Wage Boards, Viz. the Majithia Wage Boards were constituted by the Ministry of Labour and Employment on 24.5.2007. The Board submitted the recommendations to the Government on 31.12.2010.
Ministry of Labour and Employment notified the recommendations of the Majithia Wage Boards, under section 12 of the said Act, on 11.11.2011 subject to the outcome of the W.P. (C) No. 246 of 2011. The Hon’ble Supreme Court, in its judgment dated 07.02.2014 upheld the Majithia Wage Boards recommendations.
As the said order was not complied by some newspaper establishments, contempt petitions were filed in the Hon’ble Supreme Court.
The Hon’ble Supreme Court, in its judgement dated 19.7.2017held that the Majithia Wage Board Award has to be implemented in full. The Hon’ble Court also clarified on four important issues like payment of wages as per Majithia Wage Board Awards, Clause 20(j), admissibility of Variable pay, applicability to Contractual employees and financial capacity of the newspaper establishments to pay arrears.
As a sequel to the above judgment of the Hon’ble Supreme Court, a meeting was held under the Chairmanship of Shri Bandaru Dattatreya to discuss the issues relating to implementation of the recommendations of the Majithia Wage Board Awards with the representative of the State Governments. As per the said Act, the implementation of the recommendations of the Wage Boards lies with the State Governments.
During the meeting, the State Governments/UT Administrations were impressed upon to implement the Wage Board Awards in letter and spirit. Discussions were alsoheld to bring the journalists of electronic & digital media under the ambit of the Working Journalists Act, 1955. State Governments were requested to tender their considered opinion in this regard.
As the last Wage Board was constituted in 2007, the issue regarding constitution of a new Wage Board was also discussed in the meeting.