The Yogi Adityanath led Uttar Pradesh government issued an order on Saturday stating that no female worker can be forced to work the night shift in factories across the state without her written consent before 6 a.m. and after 7 p.m. and that she will not be fired if she refuses to work during these hours.
In the public interest, the notification exempted factories from Section 66 of the Factories Act, subject to specific conditions.
Aside from the work-hour restrictions, the notification lays out criteria to maintain a safe working environment for women during such hours, including free transportation to and from their homes and food.
Additionally, the employer is required to provide amenities such as restrooms, locker rooms, drinking facilities, and lighting near the worksite.
“No female worker shall be obligated to work before 6 a.m. or after 7 p.m. without her written approval. If working during the aforementioned hours, the authorities must also provide free transportation, food, and adequate supervision,” according to the government circular.
Employers were instructed to take action to prevent sexual harassment of factory workers by establishing redress processes and informing them of their rights.
The warning further said that if factories violated the set restrictions, their authorization would be promptly revoked.
The employer must send a monthly report to the Inspector of factories in the concerned region, either electronically or otherwise, detailing the details of women workers employed during the night shift, as well as an express report whenever there is an untoward incident to the Inspector of factories in the concerned region and the local police station.
According to the directive published by the UP government, factory inspectors must enforce safe working conditions for women workers and thoroughly mark non-compliance in their inspections from time to time.