SECRET BALLOT FOR TRADE UNION RECOGNITION IN INDIA

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Sub: Recognition of trade unions by Secret Ballot for Collective Bargaining in Consonance with ILO Geneva Convention-suitable Legislation to be enacted вreg

Sub: Supreme Court Judgment reported in AIR 1995 SC 1344

We wish to bring to your kind attention, the following matter for your urgent intervention and to take necessary steps.

India is a signatory and had agreed to adopt the UN convention N, 84 and 85, and is also a signatory to the ILO declaration towards recognition of trade unions. The above UN convention as well as the ILO declaration specifically deals with regarding recognition of a trade union in a industry and ensuring the right to collective bargaining of the workers.

The Geneva Convention 154 dated 3.6.1981 has categorically recognized the right to collective bargaining in tune with UN Convention No.84 and 98.This right to collective bargaining is again reiterated in ILO Declation in 1998 and secret ballot is the most accepted form of recognizing trade unions vide clause 29(1) of the above Declaration.

Unfortunately in India, no legislation is brought so far in the field of recognition of trade union and, collective bargaining despite India being state parties to UN & ILO Conventions. It is time that the Govt.of India must ponder over this serious issue concerning the right of trade unions in India.

The Honвble Supreme Court has held in unequivocal terms in AIR 1995 SC 1344 that secret ballot is the most efficacious form of recognizing trade union for collective bargaining as follows:-
в
вThe check off systemв which once prevailed in this domain has lost its appeals; and so, efforts are on to find out which other system can foot the bill. The method of secret ballot is being gradually accepted. All concerned would, however, like to see that this method is pso adapted and adjusted that it reflects the correct position as regards membership of the different trade unions operating in one and the same industry, establishment or undertaking. в

In this judgment, the Honвble Supreme Court has drawn 19 guidelines to be followed and adopted for effective conduct of election by secret ballot

Following this judgment of Supreme Court, the Division Bench of Chennai High Court has held on 31.1.08 in WA 583/2000(Tamilnadu Civil Supply Corporation case) as follows

в вin our democratic Society, the only way for assessment of representative character of Trade Unions is the secret ballot system as has been observed by the Honвble Supreme Court в

The Gujarat High Court has held on 10.2.2001 in 2002-2-GLR-1295 that Oil and Natural Gas Commission of India must follow secret ballot system of recognizing trade unions for collective bargaining in ONGC

Again the Chennai High Court has held on 8.9.09 in WA 674/09 the above views
And directed Madras Rubber Factory Management in Arackonam to follow secret ballot system for recognizing trade unions.

In many countries legislation for recognition of TUs is in consonance with the UN & ILO Conventions. These rights are enshrined in the statute book and secret ballot system to recognize trade unions for collective bargaining is adopted.

In view of the above we submit to your good offices that being top most political official of the Republic Of India, your good self the Prime Minster of India shall take urgent, speedy steps to bring in a legislation to adopt secret ballot system to recognize trade unions for collective bargaining in consultation with the Central Trade unions

We, the signatories to this ONLINE petition earnestly trust that the Govt.of India under your Prime Ministership shall act in this directionby enacting Laws at the earliest to ensure the universally accepted and followed secret ballot system as the correct form of recognizing trade unions for collective bargaining