In SEZs or Special Economic Zones, the Ministry of Commerce has ruled that there can be work from home allowed for only one year, which is to be applicable to up to 50 per cent of the total employee strength of an organisation which also includes employees hired on contract basis, said a Government notification.
Work From Home Rules From Ministry Of Commerce
A fresh ruling, 43A for Work From Home in Special Economic Zones Rules, 2006, was released by the commerce department under the Ministry of Commerce of the Indian Government.
After receiving a demand to rule a provision for the country-wide work from home policy, the notification was released. “The notification was issued on demand from the industry for making a provision for a country-wide uniform Work From Home (WFH) policy across all Special Economic Zones. The Department of Commerce thereafter held several rounds of discussions with various stakeholders before firming up the notification,” said the notification released on July 19 by the Ministry of Commerce.
“The new rule provides work from home for a certain category of employees of a unit in SEZ”, the Government states.
List of Types of Employees That Can Avail Work From Home Benefits:
- Employees belonging to IT/ ITeS SEZ units.
- Temporarily incapacitated employees
- Travelling employees
- Employees working offsite.
The notification made it clear that the work from home can be extended up to 50 per cent of the total employee strength of a company. However, “there is flexibility granted to the Development Commissioner (DC) of SEZs to approve a higher number of employees (more than 50 per cent) for any bonafide reason to be recorded in writing.”
“Work From Home is now allowed for a maximum period of one year. However, the same may further be extended for a period of one year at a time by the DC on the request of units,” the notification further said.
The notification also rules that the SEZ unit will provide all the equipment and a secured connection to the employee. “SEZ Units will provide equipment and secured connectivity for the purpose of WFH to perform authorised operations of the units and the permission to take out the equipment is co-terminus with the permission granted to an employee,” said.