When you are a hardworking woman, putting your best foot forward to create a great environment for yourself and your co-workers can be challenging. As a competent member of an organisation, you would expect to get paid accordingly, which is just how it should be -- the law demands it. The Equal Remuneration Act, 1976 ensures that it does. While the act is not specially formulated for women, it is incredibly beneficial to us.
In a country where discrimination on the basis of gender is largely prevalent, this act ‘acts’ (pun intended) as a saving grace. It states that it is the duty of the employer to pay equal remuneration to men and women workers for the same work or work of similar nature. This ensures that a woman, or man, who face malpractices at work, can sue the company under this act.
The advent of this bill came from the numerous cases of women getting paid lower than their male counterparts. The act states that 'no discrimination to be made while recruiting men and women workers."
The act suggests that there should not be any discrimination in the recruitment of personnel on the basis of gender/sex. Moreover, there must be no discrimination in the case of remuneration. Additionally, providing exceptions during the employment of women is also prohibited. The situation that arises from this is that of ‘equality’ over ‘equity’. There are certain places that can prove to be hazardous for the employment of women and this section provides them immunity from working at such places.
Another important aspect of the act is that of the Advisory Committee that is suggests forming. Section 6(1) of the Act says that in order to increase employment opportunities, an advisory board must be created. This is being done in order to take all possible steps to make a change in the remuneration policies of employers in India.
Section 6(3) states, the factors which make a difference in the decision of the formation of the advisory board and the norms it decides are the number of women at work, the nature of work, the hours of work, the suitability of women and the need to provide opportunities.
All in all, the act is essential for women to realise that they have the power and means to sue an organisation that they work for if they face malpractice of any kind. You must also realise your worth and never think that just by virtue of the fact that you’re a woman, you deserve inferior treatment and wages.