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Re: Maharashtra Shops & Establishment Act

Re: Maharashtra Shops & Establishment Act

SILF has not taken any view on Maharashtra Shops & Establishment Act. You are the first firm who raised this issue.
 
I have seen the earlier Bombay Shops and Establishment Act 1948 and have compared the provisions thereof with the new Act. In the 1948 Act the definition of Commercial Establishment expressly included the establishment of any legal practitioner together with other professions like Medicine, Architects, Engineers, Accountants, Tax Consultants, etc. In the new Act there is no definition of Commercial Establishment but there is a wide definition  of “Establishment”.
 
It is important to note that even though the expression “profession” has been retained along with the establishment of Medical Practitioners, Architects, Engineers, Accountants, Tax Consultants, etc. but there is an conscious omission (Cassus Omissus) with regard to the establishment of Legal Practitioner. In my view the Establishments of Legal Practitioner would not be covered under the definition of Establishment under the new Act.
 
There are judgments of the Supreme Court and various High Courts clearly laying down that office of Lawyers are not covered under provisions of the respective Shops and Establishment Acts. Most relevant judgment is in my own case decided by Delhi High court where Bombay Act has been expressly dealt with. Since the inclusion of establishments of legal practitioners by way of an amendment in the Bombay Act was struck down by Bombay High Court as unconstitutional, legal practitioners have been excluded in the definition of establishment under the new Act. Copy of Delhi High Court judgment is attached.
 
I am circulating our exchange of emails to our membership and would request our members from Maharashtra to share their views with both of us.
 
Kind Regards,
 
LALIT BHASIN

 

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