In this article we will discuss THE ESSENTIAL SERVICES MAINTENANCE ACT 1968 (Definition)

In this article, we will discuss THE ESSENTIAL SERVICES MAINTENANCE ACT 1968 (Definition). So, let’s get started.


ACT NO. 59 OF 1968 [ 28th December, 1968].

An Act to provide for the maintenance of certain essential services and the normal life of the community.

(1) Definitions. In this Act,-
(a) ” essential service” means-
(i) any postal, telegraph or telephone service;
(ii) any railway service or any other transport service for the carriage of passengers or goods by land, water or air with respect to which Parliament has power to make laws;
(iii) any service connected with the operation or maintenance of aerodromes, or with the operation, repair or maintenance of aircraft;
(iv) any service connected with the loading, unloading, movement or storage of goods in any port;
(v) any service connected with the clearance of goods or passengers through the customs or with the prevention of smuggling;
(vi) any service in any mint or security press;
(vii) any service in any defence establishment of the Government of India;
(viii) any service in connection with the affairs of the Union, not being a service specified in any of the foregoing sub- clauses;
(ix) any other service connected with matters with respect to which Parliament has power to make laws and which the Central Government being of opinion that strikes therein would prejudicially affect the maintenance of any public utility service, the public safety or the maintenance of supplies and services necessary for the life of the community or would result in the infliction of grave hardship on the community, may, by notification in the Official Gazette, declare to be an essential service for the purposes of this Act;

(b) ” strike” means the cessation of work by a body of persons employed in any essential service acting in combination or a concerted refusal or a refusal under a common understanding of any number of persons who are or have been so employed to continue to work or to accept employment, and includes-
(i) refusal to work overtime where such work is necessary for the maintenance of any essential service;
(ii) any other conduct which is likely to, result in, or results in, cessation or substantial retardation of work in any essential service.

(2) Every notification issued under sub- clause (ix) of clause (a) of sub- section (1) shall be laid before each House of Parliament immediately after it is made if it is in session and on the first day of the commencement of the next session of the House if it is not in session, and shall cease, to operate at the expiration of forty days from the date of its being so laid or from the re- assembly of Parlia- ment, as the case may be, unless before the expiration of that period a resolution approving the issue of the notification is passed by both Houses of Parliament. Explanation- Where the Houses of Parliament are summoned to re- assemble on different dates, the period of forty days shall be reckoned from the later of those dates.

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