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Bonded Labour System (Abolition) Act, 1976

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Bonded Labour System (Abolition) Act, 1976 was introduced with a view to abolish the economic and physical exploitation of the weaker sections. Basic Human Rights of debtors and their family members are lost in the hands of creditors and their family for generations together. The interest rates payable are high and the agreement / contracts to prove the debtor-creditor's stand are vague / poor. Article 23(1) abolishes 'begar' and other forms of bonded labour.

The Act says that if there is an agreement / contract or an instrument requiring bonded labour after the commencement of this act, it shall stand inoperative and the liability to repay it stands extinguished. The Act came into force on October 25, 1975.


  • Section 2(a): Defines 'advance'
  • Section 2(b): Defines 'agreement'
  • Section 2(c): Defines 'ascendant' or 'descendent'
  • Section 2(d): Defines 'bonded debt'
  • Section 2(e): Defines 'bonded labour'
  • Section 2(f): Defines 'bonded labourer'
  • Section 2(g): Defines 'bonded labour system'
  • Extinguishment of liability to repay bonded debt
  • Implementing Authorities
  • Vigilance Committee
  • Offenses and procedure for trial
  • Miscellaneous provisions

Related Cases / Recent Cases / Case Law

  • Public Union for Civil Liberties Vs State of Tamil Nadu and Others, Writ Petition (Civil) No. 3922 of 1985, Supreme Court of India judgement delivered on October 15, 2012
  • Sannasomannara Somashekarappa and Others vs Gorappa Rudraswamy and Others says that 'bonded labour system' as per Section 2(g) should exist and if it was not proved, action under Section 16 cannot be taken.