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TRADE UNIONS ACT

Ministry of Law and Justice

Act nº 16 of 1926


  • Chapter I
  • Chapter II
  • Chapter III
  • Chapter IV
  • Chapter V
  • Amending Acts
  • Act nº 16 of 1926

Preamble

THE TRADE UNIONS ACT, 1926

[Act, No. 16 of 1926]1

[25th March, 1926]

PREAMBLE

An Act to provide for the registration of Trade Unions and in certain respects to define the law relating to registered Trade Unions2[***].

Whereas it is expedient to provide for the registration of Trade Unions and in certain respects to define the law relating to registered Trade Unions2[***].

It is hereby enacted as follows:-

STATE AMENDMENT

3Gujarat

In the Preamble of Trade Union Act, before the words, "It is hereby enacted as follows "insert the following words, namely:-

"And whereas it is expedient for deciding disputes relating to officers or members of the executives of the Trade Unions and for certain other purposes hereinafter appearing."

1. For Statement of Objects and Reasons,seeGazette of India, 1925, Pt.V, p. 8, and for Report of Select Committee, see Gazette of India, 1925, Pt. IV, p. 197.

2. The words "in the Provinces of India" omitted by Act 42 of 1960, Section2.

3. Vide Gujarat Act 7 of 1962, Section 2 (w.e.f. 1-7-1962).


Chapter I

Section 1. Short title, extent and commencement

(1) This Act may be called the1[***] Trade Unions Act, 1926.

2[(2) It extends to the whole of India3[***].

(3) It shall come into force on such date4as the Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, appoint.

1. The word "Indian" omitted by Act 38 of 1964, Section 3.

2. Substituted by the A.O. 1950, for sub-section (2).

3. The words "except in the State of Jammu and Kashmir" Substituted for the words "except Part BStates" by Act 3 of 1951, Section 3 and Schedule and were omitted by Act 51 of 1970, Section 2 and Schedule

4. Came into force on 1-6-1927, see Gazette of India, 1927, Pt. I, p. 467.


Section 2. Definitions

In this Act1["the appropriate Government" means, in relation to Trade Unions whose objects are not confined to one State, the Central Government, and in relation to other Trade Unions, the State Government, and], unless there is anything repugnant in the subject or context,-

(a) "executive" means the body, by whatever name called, to which the management of the affairs of a Trade Union is entrusted;

STATE AMENDMENTS

2Gujarat

In section 2, after clause (a), insert the following clause, namely:-

"(aa) Industrial Court" means the Industrial Court constituted under the Bombay Industrial Relations Act, 1946, as in force in the State of Gujarat."

3Madhya Pradesh

In section 2, clause (a) shall be renumbered as clause (a2) and before clause (a2) as so renumbered, insert the following clauses, namely:-

"(a) 'approved list' means the list of approved unions maintained by the Registrar under section 28A;

(a1) 'approved union' means a registered Trade Union on the approved list."

(b)4["office-bearer"] in the case of a Trade Union, includes any member of the executive thereof, but does not include an auditor;

STATE AMENDMENT

5Madhya Pradesh

In section 2,clause (b) shall be renumbered as clause (b2) and before clause (b2) as so renumbered, insert the following clauses, namely.-

"(b) 'Industrial Court' shall have the meaning assigned to it in the Madhya Pradesh Industrial Relations Act, 1960;

(c) "prescribed" means prescribed by regulations made under this Act;

(d) "registered office" means that office of a Trade Union which is registered under this Act as the head office thereof;

(e) "registered Trade Union" means a Trade Union registered under this Act;

6[(f) "Registrar" means-

(i) a Registrar of Trade Unions appointed by the appropriate Government under section 3, and includes any Additional or Deputy Registrar of Trade Unions, and

(ii) in relation to any Trade Union, the Registrar appointed for the State in which the head or registered office, as the case may be, of the Trade Union is situated;]

(g) "trade dispute" means any dispute between employers and workmen or between workmen and workmen, or between employers and employers which is connected with the employment or non-employment, or the terms of employment or the conditions of labour, of any person, and "workmen" means all persons employed in trade or industry whether or not in the employment of the employer with whom the trade dispute arises; and

(h) "Trade Union" means any combination, whether temporary or permanent, formed primarily for the purpose of regulating the relations between workmen and employers or between workmen and workmen, or between employers and employers, or for imposing restrictive conditions on the conduct of any trade or business, and includes any federation of two or more Trade Unions:

Provided that this Act shall not affect-

(i) any agreement between partners as to their own business;

(ii) any agreement between an employer and those employed by him as to such employment; or

(iii) any agreement in consideration of the sale of the goodwill of a business or of instruction in any profession, trade or handicraft.

1. Inserted by the A.O. 1937.

2 . Vide Gujarat Act 7 of 1962, Section 3 (w.e.f. 1-7-1962).

3 . Vide Madhya Pradesh Act 28 of 1960, Section 2 (w.e.f. 31-12-1960)], clause (bl) omitted by Madhya Pradesh Act 26 of 1981, Section 3 (w.e.f. 23-5-1981).

4 . Substituted by Act 38 of 1964, Section 2, for "officer" (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

5. Vide Madhya Pradesh Act 28 of 1960, Section 2 (w.e.f. 31-12-1960).

6 . Substituted by Act 42 of 1960, Section 3, for clause (f).


Chapter II

Section 3. Appointment of Registrars

1 [(1)] 2 [The appropriate Government] shall appoint a person to be the Registrar of Trade Unions for 3 [each State].

4 [(2) The appropriate Government may appoint as many Additional and Deputy Registrars of Trade Unions as it thinks fit for the purpose of exercising and discharging, under the superintendence and direction of the Registrar, such powers and functions of the Registrar under this Act as it may, by order, specify and define the local limits within which any such Additional or Deputy Registrar shall exercise and discharge the powers and functions so specified.

(3) Subject to the provisions of any order under sub-section (2), where an Additional or Deputy Registrar exercises and discharges the powers and functions of a Registrar in an area within which the registered office of a Trade Union is situated, the Additional or Deputy Registrar shall be deemed to be the Registrar in relation to the Trade Union for the purposes of this Act.]

1. Section 3 re-numbered as sub-section (1) thereof by Act 42 of 1960, section 4.

2. Substituted by the A. O. 1937, for "Each Local Government".

3. Substituted by the A.O. 1937, for "the Province".

4. Inserted by Act 42 of 1960, section 4.


Section 4. Mode of registration

1[(1)] Any seven or more members of a Trade Union may, by subscribing their names to the rules of the Trade Union and by otherwise complying with the provisions of this Act with respect to registration, apply for registration of the Trade Union under this Act:

2[Provided that no Trade Union of workmen shall be registered unless at least ten per cent, or one hundred of the workmen, whichever is less, engaged or employed in the establishment or industry with which it is connected are the members of such Trade Union on the date of making of application for registration:

Provided further that no Trade Union of workmen shall be registered unless it has on the date of making application not less than seven persons as its members, who are workmen engaged or employed in the establishment or industry with which it is connected.]

3[(2) Where an application has been made under sub-section (1) for the registration of a Trade Union, such application shall not be deemed to have become invalid merely by reason of the fact that, at any time after the date of the application, but before the registration of the Trade Union, some of the applicants, but not exceeding half of the total number of persons who made the application, have ceased to be members of the Trade Union or have given notice in writing to the Registrar dissociating themselves from the application.]

1. Section 4 re-numbered as sub-section (1) thereof by Act 42 of 1960, section 5.

2. Inserted by Act 31 of 2001, section 2 (w.e.f. 9-1-2002).

3. Inserted by Act 42 of 1960, section 5.


Section 5. Application for registration

(1) Every application for registration of a Trade Union shall be made to the Registrar and shall be accompanied by a copy of the rules of the Trade Union and a statement of the following particulars, namely:-

(a) the names, occupations and address of the members making application;

1[(aa) in the case of a Trade Union of workmen, the names, occupations and addresses of the place of work of the members of the Trade Union making the application;]

(b) the name of the Trade Union and the address of its head office; and

(c) the titles, names, ages, addresses and occupations of the2[office- bearers] of the Trade Union.

(2) Where a Trade Union has been in existence for more than one year before the making of an application for its registration, there shall be delivered to the Registrar, together with the application, a general statement of the assets and liabilities of the Trade Union prepared in such form and containing such particulars as may be prescribed.

1. Inserted by Act 31 of 2001, section 3 (w.e.f. 9-1-2002).

2. Substituted by Act 38 of 1964, section 2, for "officers" (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).


Section 6. Provisions to be contained in the rules of a Trade Union

A Trade Union shall not be entitled to registration under this Act, unless the executive thereof is constituted in accordance with the provisions of this Act, and the rules thereof provide for the following matters, namely:-

(a) the name of the Trade Union;

(b) the whole of the objects for which the Trade Union has been established;.

(c) the whole of the purposes for which the general funds of the Trade Union shall be applicable, all of which purposes shall be purposes to which such funds are lawfully applicable under this Act;

(d) the maintenance of a list of the members of the Trade Union and adequate facilities for the inspection thereof by the1[office-bearers] and members of Trade Union;

(e) the admission of ordinary members who shall be persons actually engaged or employed in an industry with which the Trade Union is connected, and also the admission of the number of honorary or temporary members as1[office-bearers] required under section 22 to form the executive of the Trade Union;

2[(ee) the payment of a minimum subscription by members of the Trade Union which shall not be less than-

(i) one rupee per annum for rural workers;

(ii) three rupees per annum for workers in other unorganised sectors; and

(iii) twelve rupees per annum for workers in any other case;]

(f) the conditions under which any member shall be entitled to any benefit assured by the rules and under which any fine or forfeiture may be imposed on the members;

(g) the manner in which the rules shall be amended, varied or rescinded;

(h) the manner in which the members of the executive and the other1[office-bearers] of the Trade Union shall be3[elected] and removed;

4[(hh) the duration of period being not more than three years, for which the members of the executive and other office-bearers of the Trade Union shall be elected;]

(i) the safe custody of the funds of the Trade Union, an annual audit, in such manner as may be prescribed, of the accounts thereof, and adequate facilities for the inspection of the account books by the1[office-bearers] and members of the Trade Union; and

(j) the manner in which the Trade Union may be dissolved.

STATE AMENDMENTS

5Gujarat

In section 6, after clause (f), insert the following clause, namely:- "(ff) the termination of membership of the Trade Union of persons whose subscription is in arrears for a period exceeding six months or for such lesser period as may be provided in the rules"

6Madhya Pradesh

In section 6, for clause (ee) substitute the following clause, namely:- "(ee) the payment of subscription by members of the Trade Union which shall not be less than twenty-five naye paise per month per member:

Provided that the minimum rate of subscription in the case of members of aTrade Union of agricultural workers shall be five paise per month per member."

1. Substituted by Act 38 of 1964, section 2, for "officers" (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

2. Clause (ee) Inserted by Act 42 of 1960, section 6 and Substituted by Act 31 of 2001, section 4 (w.e.f. 9-1-2002).

3. Substituted by Act 31 of 2001, section 4 for "appointed" (w.e.f. 9-1-2002).

4. Inserted by Act 31 of 2001, section 4 (w.e.f. 9-1-2002).

5. Vide Gujarat Act 7 of 1962, section 3 (w.e.f. 1-7-1962).

6. Vide Madhya Pradesh Act 16 of 1968, section 2.


Section 7. Power to call for further particulars and to require alterations of names

(1) The Registrar may call for further information for the purpose of satisfying himself that any application complies with the provisions of section 5, or that the Trade Union is entitled to registration under section 6, and may refuse to register the Trade Union until such information is supplied.

(2) If the name under which a Trade Union is proposed to be registered is identical with that by which any other existing Trade Union has been registered or, in the opinion of the Registrar, so nearly resembles such name as to be likely to deceive the public or the members of either Trade Union, the Registrar shall require the persons applying for registration to alter the name of the Trade Union stated in the application, and shall refuse to register the Union until such alteration has been made.

Section 8. Registration

The Registrar, on being satisfied that the Trade Union has complied with all the requirements of this Act in regard to registration, shall register the Trade Union by entering in a register, to be maintained in such form as may be prescribed, the particulars relating to the Trade Union contained in the statement accompanying the application for registration.

Section 9. Certificate of registration

The Registrar, on registering a Trade Union under section 8, shall issue a certificate of registration in the prescribed form which shall be conclusive evidence that the Trade Union has been duly registered under this Act.

Section 9A. Minimum requirement about membership of a Trade Union

1[9A. Minimum requirement about membership of a Trade Union

A registered Trade Union of workmen shall at all times continue to have not less than ten per cent, or one hundred of the workmen, whichever is less, subject to a minimum of seven, engaged or employed in an establishment or industry with which it is connected, as its members.]

1. Inserted by Act 31 of 2001, section 5 (w.e.f. 9-1-2002).


Section 10. Cancellation of registration

A certificate of registration of a Trade Union may be withdrawn or cancelled by the Registrar-

(a) on the application of the Trade Union to be verified in such manner as may be prescribed;

(b) if the Registrar is satisfied that the certificate has been obtained by fraud or mistake or that the Trade Union has ceased to exist or has wilfully and after notice from the Registrar contravened any provision of this Act or allowed any rule to continue in force which is inconsistent with any such provision or has rescinded any rule providing for any matter provision for which is required by section 6;

1[(c) if the Registrar is satisfied that a registered Trade Union of workmen ceases to have the requisite number of members:]

Provided that not less than two months' previous notice in writing specifying the ground on which it is proposed to withdraw or cancel the certificate shall be given by the Registrar to the Trade Union before the certificate is withdrawn or cancelled otherwise than on the application of the Trade Union.

STATE AMENDMENT

SECTION 10A

2Gujarat

After section 10 insert the following, section, namely:-

"10A. Liability of existing registered Trade Unions to make certain provisions in their Rules.-

(1) The rules of every Trade Union which was registered under this Act before the date of commencement of the Indian Trade Unions (Gujarat Amendment) Act, 1961, and the certificate of registration of which is in force on that date shall provide for the matter specified in clause (ff) of section 6.

(2) If no provision as required by sub-section (1) is made in the rules of any existing Trade Union before the expiry of six months from the date mentioned in sub-section (1), the Registrar may cancel the registration of such Trade Union:

Provided that not less than two months notice in writing specifying the grounds on which it is proposed to cancel the certificate shall be given by the Registrar to the Trade Union before the certificate is cancelled."

1. Inserted by Act 31 of 2001, section 6 (w.e.f. 9-1-2002).

2. Vide Gujarat Act 7 of 1962, section 5 (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).


Section 11. Appeal

1 [11. Appeal

(1) Any person aggrieved by any refusal of the Registrar to register a Trade Union or by the withdrawal or cancellation of a certificate of registration may, within such period as may be prescribed, appeal-

(a) where the head office of the Trade Union is situated within the limits of a Presidency town2[***] to the High Court, or

3[(aa) where the head office is situated in an area, falling within the jurisdiction of a Labour Court or an Industrial Tribunal, to that Court or Tribunal, as the case may be;]

(b) where the head office is situated in any area, to such Court, not inferior to the Court of an additional or assistant Judge of a principal Civil Court of original jurisdiction as the4[Appropriate Government] may appoint in this behalf for that area.

(2) The appellate Court may dismiss the appeal, or pass an order directing the Registrar to register the Union and to issue a certificate of registration under the provisions of section 9 or setting aside the order or withdrawal or cancellation of the certificate, as the case may be, and the Registrar shall comply with such order.

(3) For the purpose of an appeal under sub-section (1) an appellate Court shall, so far as may be, follow the same procedure and have the same power as it follows and has when trying a suit under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (5 of 1908), and may direct by whom the whole or any part of the costs of the appeal shall be paid, and such costs shall be recovered as if they had been awarded in a suit under the said Code.

(4) In the event of the dismissal of an appeal by any Court appointed under clause (b) of sub-section (1) the person aggrieved shall have a right of appeal to the High Court, and the High Court shall, for the purpose of such appeal, have all the powers of an appellate Court under sub-sections (2) and (3), and the provisions of those sub-sections shall apply accordingly.]

STATE AMENDMENTS

SECTION 11A

5Gujarat

After section 11, insert the following section, namely:-

"11A. Appeal to Industrial Court in certain cases.-

(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1) of section 11 in the case of a Trade Union in relation to which the State Government is the appropriate Government, any person aggrieved by any refusal of the Registrar to register such Trade Union or by withdrawal or cancellation of a certificate of a certificate of registration may within such period as may be prescribed, appeal to the Industrial Court. The decision of the Industrial Court in such appeal shall be final.

(2) In respect of an appeal under sub-section (1), the Industrial Court shall have the same power and follow the same procedure as an appellate Court has and follows under sub-sections (2) and (3) of section 11."

6Madhya Pradesh

For section 11, substitute the following section, namely:- "11.Appeal.-

(1) Any person aggrieved by an order of the Registrar-

(a) refusing to register a Trade Union; or

(b) withdrawing or cancelling a certificate of registration;

may within thirty days from the communication of such order to the Trade Union concerned, appeal to the Industrial Court whose decision shall be final:

Provided that in computing the period of thirty days, the time requisite for obtaining a copy of the order shall be excluded.

(2) The Registrar shall comply with any order passed by the Industrial Court under subsection (1).

1. Substituted by Act 15 of 1928, section 2, for section 11.

2. The words "or of Rangoon" omitted by the A.O. 1937.

3. Inserted by Act 31 of 2001, section 7 (w.e.f. 9-1-2002).

4. Substituted, by Act 15 of 1928, section 2, for "Local Government".

5. Vide Gujarat Act 7 of 1962, section 6 (w.e.f. 1-7-1962).

6. Vide Madhya Pradesh Act 28 of 1960, section 3 (w.e.f. 31-12-1960).