India is mulling ‘Right to Disconnect’ bill, which will give employees the right to not respond to employers’ calls, texts or emails after office hours, in order to bring a better work-life balance to everyone.
What exactly is ‘Right to Disconnect’ Bill
The Right to Disconnect Bill gives employees the right to not respond to employers’ calls, texts or emails after office hours. And if employees work / respond to emails, calls after office hours, they are entitled for overtime.
The bill essentially states that no disciplinary action can be taken against an employee if they choose to not respond to their employer after your stipulated work hours.
The bill will also ask companies with more than ten employees to periodically negotiate specific terms with their workers, publish their own charter. Companies will have to establish an Employee Welfare Committee, which will comprise representatives of company’s workforce (source)
The only question that matters
In an inefficient, indisciplined and always-full-of-excuse economy like India, does this bill even make sense? How many people actually turn up to their office on time? On a dotted line?
How much work is accomplished on a daily basis? Are we a task driven society?
While a concept like this works in France and in general, a lot of other EU countries – do remember that these countries are among the most productive countries globally (source: OECD).
India, being largely a services economy needs to move to a product-driven economy, in order to define a better working condition for people at large (in services business, you are at the mercy of client’s whims and fancies when it comes to timelines/deliverables).
If at all this bill comes into action, expect a lot of MNCs to rethink their India centers as the labor cost will not only go up, it will also lead to inefficient work culture.
Maybe, time to fix work-life balance is by first teaching productivity to everyone across the board and then, enabling people to have hobbies beyond listening to music, watching movies. This translates to opening more parks and recreational centers.