Equal Pay for Equal Work

Equal Pay for Equal Work’ is an essential yet ignored topic in today’s scenario globally. Its various implications and repercussions are very evidently pertinent in India too. This practice becomes a vital factor for the composition in one of the social evils existing in our society,i.e., gender discrimination. This comes under the purview of the discrimination, which is done based on the sex of an individual. This article aims at the establishment of the fact that in our nation, this very malpractice is very much prevalent. Also, this work would like to throw some light over the legal aspects of this practice which includes the statutory provisions and acts prevalent in the form of laws of the country and case laws that support those facts.

“Equal pay isn’t just a women’s issue; when women get equal pay, their family incomes rise and the whole family benefits.”

Mike Honda


The expression ‘Equal Pay for Equal Work’ implies that each person who has been utilized for the work which is distributed to him ought to be given adequate compensation as that of the others. There ought not to be any separation during an installment of pay. It is most generally utilized with regards to sexual separation, corresponding to the sex pay hole.

The brief specialists who are working the movements rather than the lasting labourers ought to get a similar compensation as that of the perpetual specialists is a standard and an ideal for the person for getting the equivalent. The unimportant distinction in classification would not dis-entitle a worker from being paid equal wages from changeless representatives. Any demonstration of paying fewer wages when contrasted with others likewise arranged establishes a demonstration of exploitative subjugation.

‘Pay Gap’ or inconsistent compensation is an issue that has gotten a matter of concern nowadays because of an expansion in the cases of biased compensation scales for a similar kind of work. India, despite everything, comes up short on a far-reaching and straightforward compensation strategy for all the areas of the economy. This makes the issue of likely interest for equivalent compensation a matter of worry as of late. Equivalent compensation here relates not exclusively to essential compensation, however, incorporates different advantages and recompenses as well.

“When we pay women less than men, we’re telling women their work isn’t as valuable. We’re all equally valuable. And we should be paid equally.”

Barack Obama

Statutory Provisions

The rule of equivalent compensation for equivalent work is contained in Article 39(d) of the Indian Constitution which visualizes that the State will, specifically, direct its arrangement towards making sure that there is equivalent compensation for equivalent work for the two men and women. This standard infers that where everything is equivalent, that is, the place every single applicable thought are the equivalent, people holding indistinguishable posts may not be dealt with distinctively in the matter of their compensation only because they have a place with various departments. Of course, if officials of a similar position perform different capacities and the forces, obligations, and duties of the posts held by the shift, such officials may not be heard to grumble of disparate compensation just because the posts are of a similar position and the classification is the equivalent.

The Equal Pay for Equal Work is a Directive Principle of State Policy under the Indian Constitution. According to Article 39 (d), the State will, specifically, direct the strategy towards making sure that there is equivalent compensation for equivalent work for the two people.

Section 4 of the Equal Remuneration Act, 1976, which says that it is the business must pay equivalent compensation to people labourers for the same work or work of comparative nature. Section 5 of the Act explicitly makes positive victimization ladies as it says that no business while making enrollment for a similar work or work of a comparable sort makes any oppression ladies.

The punishment for the segregation is given in Section 10 (2) which says that if any business

(a) makes any enlistment in repudiation of the arrangements of his Act, or

(b) makes any installment or compensation at inconsistent rates to people specialist, for a similar work or work of a comparable sort, or

(c) makes any separation among people labourers in repudiation of the arrangements of this Act,

he will be culpable with fine which will not be under ten thousand rupees however which may reach out to twenty thousand rupees or with detainment for a term which will be at least three months yet which may stretch out to one year or with both for the primary offence, and with detainment which may stretch out to two years for the second and ensuing offences.

The arrangement in the Act expresses that the privilege of ladies and men to get equivalent compensation for equivalent work applies to:

  1. all representatives (counting disciples and that telecommuting), whether on full-time, low maintenance, easygoing or brief agreements, paying little heed to the length of administration,
  2. different specialists (model: independently employed) whose agreements require individual execution of the work.

As per Section 4 of this Act, no business will pay to any laborer, utilized by him in a foundation or business, compensation, regardless of whether payable in real money or kind, at rates less ideal than those at which compensation is paid by him to the laborers of the other gender in such foundation or work for playing out a similar work or work comparable nature. No business will agree to the arrangements of this segment to diminish the pace of compensation of any specialist.

As per Section 5 of the Equal Remuneration Act, on and structure the initiation of this demonstration, no business will, while making enrollment for a similar work or work of a similar work of comparative nature, or in any state of administration resulting or enlistment, for example, advancements, preparing or move to make any separation aside from where the work of ladies in such work is precluded or confined by or under any law until further notice in power.

As per Section 8, the businesses should keep up registers and different archives comparable to the labourers utilized by him as might be recommended.

As indicated by Section 10, if after the initiation of this demonstration, any business excludes or neglects to keep up any register or another archive according to labourers utilized by him or precludes or will not give any data, he will be culpable with basic detainment for a term which may reach out to one month or with fine which may stretch out to ten thousand rupees or with both.

Case Laws

The most significant case for equivalent compensation for equivalent work is Randhir Singh v. Union of India in which the Supreme Court held that the standard of “equivalent compensation for equivalent work” however not a fundamental right, it is positively a sacred objective and, in this manner, fit for requirement through established cures under Article 32 of the Constitution.

On account of GrihKalyan Kendra v. Union of India, the Supreme Court said that “Equivalent compensation for equivalent work isn’t explicitly pronounced by the Constitution as a central right however taking into account the order guideline of state strategy as contained in Article 39(d) of the Constitution “equivalent compensation for equivalent work” has accepted the status of Fundamental Rights in administration statute having respect to the constitution command of balance in Article 14 and 16 of the Constitution.”

The Supreme Court has given a judgment dependent on it on account of the State of Punjab and Ors. v. Jagjit Singh and Ors wherein it was held that a worker connected with for a similar work couldn’t be paid not exactly another who plays out similar obligations and duties and positively not in a government assistance state. Such activity is other than being belittling strikes at the very establishment of human pride. Any individual who is constrained to work at a lesser compensation doesn’t do so deliberately the person does as such to give food and asylum to their family, at the expense of their sense of pride and nobility, at the expense of their self-esteem, and the expense of their honesty.

The rules for equivalent compensation for equivalent work was considered on account of Kishori Mohanlal Bakshi v. Union Of India where the Supreme Court reported it unequipped for being actualized in the official courtroom. By and by, it got due affirmation in 1987 through the Mackinnon Mackenzie’s situation where the issue close by was an instance of proportionate pay for both male and female transcribers.

Given the clashing perspectives, the issue alluded to a full appointed authority seat of the P&H High Court in Avtar Singh v. State of Punjab and Ors. The full appointed authority seat of the P&H High Court, while settling upon the issue, inferred that transitory representatives are not qualified for the base of the customary compensation scale, just because of the explanation that the exercises completed by day by day bets and lasting workers are comparable. In any case, this standard was exposed to two special cases, wherein transitory workers would be qualified for compensation at standard with perpetual representatives:

 If the impermanent worker has been delegated in a customary endorsed post after experiencing a determination procedure dependent on decency and balance of chance to all other qualified competitors.

On the off chance that the impermanent representative has been named in a post which is not a standard endorsed post, be that as it may, their administrations have been benefited ceaselessly, with notional breaks, for an adequate extensive stretch.


To satisfy the goal of equivalent compensation for equivalent work enactment isn’t sufficient, ladies in disorderly parts should speak more loudly against this inconsistent treatment. Equivalent compensation is a significant factor to spread ladies strengthening.  If ladies are denied equivalent treatment regarding wages, it will add up to an infringement of the privilege to balance. Along these lines, associations should find a way to destroy the hole in the wages of workers. 

Regardless of having put forth unlimited attempts, still, there is an absence of an ensuing and important enactment. Likewise, factors like obliviousness and uniform translation of law go about as hindrances in annihilating compensation hole. To determine this issue, it is critical to make mindfulness for, yet besides, adequately actualize the administrative institutions.

To dispose of the victimization ladies, what the organization should take a gander at while recruiting a representative is the capabilities of the workers, how profitable can the representative be for the organization, sitting above the sexual orientation. On the off chance that a lady is as qualified a man, at that point she ought to be paid as much as the man. On the off chance that the lady has similar activity as the man, at that point, she ought to be paid the equivalent.

On the off chance that ladies are as qualified as men, at that point for what reason would it be a good idea for them not to be given a similar compensation as their male partners? It not just brings down the confidence and spirit of the ladies, yet it additionally influences their profitability. On the off chance that they will be treated as second residents, at that point by what method will they discover the certainty of working in an organization?

In conclusion, it should be added that each individual regardless of concerning their sexual orientation, caste, religion ought to be given appropriate compensation for the work that they have invested in the amounts of energy for and the compensation ought to be sensible.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What do you mean by ‘equal pay for equal work’?
  2. What are the statutory provisions and acts involved in the implementation of ‘equal pay for equal work’?
  3. What are the Indian case laws involved which would relate to this theme?
  4. What is the current scenario of this principle?
  5. What are the steps that should be taken to implement this theme in India successfully?


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