“Workman” interpreted under Indian employment law

by | Jan 4, 2024

In the recent case of Rohit Dembiwal v. Tata Consultancy Services Ltd., the Bombay High Court held that an IT analyst did not qualify as a “workman” under the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947, as his day-to-day responsibilities were supervisory in nature, and his main role was to approve the time sheets and leave of his team members, to handle financial matters, including reimbursement of medical expenses and travelling expenses of his team members, and to initiate disciplinary enquiries against his team members.  The Bombay High Court reaffirmed a long-standing principle that classification of an employee as a “workman” is a functional test and is subjective in nature.

This case reiterates the importance of analysing the predominant nature of work and the actual job functions of an employee for determining whether he/she is a “workman” and entitled to retrenchment benefits under the foregoing statute.  As this area of the law can get highly litigious, companies who are letting go teams or who are doing acquihire M&A transactions must take extra care to ensure that employees do not litigate on this issue and seek post facto reinstatement.

More News

Benchmark Litigation Rankings 2024

We are pleased to share that we have been ranked for multiple practice areas in the Benchmark Litigation 2024 rankings. Firm Rankings Labour and Employment White-collar Crime Commercial and Transactions Insolvency International Arbitration Government and Regulatory...

read more

The Legal 500 2024 Rankings

We are pleased to share that our firm has been recognised for its work across practice areas by The Legal 500 (Legalease) in their 2024 rankings. Firm Rankings Antitrust and Competition Corporate and M&A Data Protection Dispute Resolution: Litigation Intellectual...

read more