Social Security Measures

6. The Workmen’s Compensation Act,1923
The Workmen’s Compensation Act, 1923 provides for payment of compensation to workmen and their dependants in case of injury and accident (including certain occupational disease) arising out of and in the course of employment and resulting in disablement or death. The amount of compensation to be paid depends on the nature of the injury and the average monthly wages and age of workmen. The minimum and maximum rates of compensation payable for death (in such cases it is paid to the dependents of workmen) and for disability have been fixed and is subject to revision from time to time.

a) Coverage
The Act covers all workers employed in factories, mines, plantations, transport undertakings, construction works, railways, ships, circus and other hazardous occupations specified in Schedule II of the Act. It does not apply to members of the Armed Forces, casual workers and workers covered under the Employees State Insurance Act, 1948. State Governments are empowered to extend the Act to any hazardous occupation.

b) Administration
State Governments have appointed commissioners for administering the Act.

c) Benefits
The employer is liable to pay compensation to a workman for all personal injuries caused tohim by accident arising out of and in the cause of employment which disable him for more than three days. The Act further provides that if a workman contracts any occupational disease specified in the Third Schedule it shall ordinarily be deemed as an employment injury. The amount of compensation to be paid depends upon the wages, age and the type of injury of the workman. The employer is under obligation to pay compensation within one month from the date on which it falls due. In case an employer makes default in payment the commissioner may direct for recovery of the amount of arrears together with interest. If in the opinion of the commissioner there is no justification for delay, a further sum not exceeding 50% of such amount may be recovered by way of penalty.

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