Selin ATAY-TDO- The Indian government is about to finalize the rules for a new set of labour codes that could provide companies with the flexibility of reducing the total number of working days in a week to four. However, it would mean that employees will obligate to work 12 hours in a shift, instead of the standard nine.

Apurva Chandra, India's Labour and Employment Secretary, told press that many institutions were interested in providing a four-day work week for employees. "...It is possible that an employer may provide for a five-day working week and I have come across employers who say that we want even a 4-day working week. We have tried to bring in some flexibility into the workdays," Apurva Chandra said. The 48 hours-per-week limit, however, shall remain. “It is sacrosanct,” maintained India's Labour and Employment Secretary.

The Indian government clarified that organisations may have the option to choose a four-day week but employees will have to adjust to 12-hour-long shifts. Apurva Chandra added that an organisation opting for a four-day work week will obligate to provide employees with three days of consecutive holidays.

The ministry said in its official press release that  “Rule-making process is already underway and likely to complete in the coming week". The ministry also heralded that it would launch a portal for unorganised labour sector which would collect relevant information on building and construction workers and help to formulate health, housing, skill, insurance, credit and food schemes for migrant workers. The website is projected to be launched by May or June this year.

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