Leave Policy in India

Shraddha Saxena
Explore the details of holidays and various types of paid and unpaid employee leave in India. Gloroots assists you in efficiently managing annual leave entitlements, tracking holiday requests, and organizing different leave categories for your employees.

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Table of Content

Leave policies in India are complex, with state-specific rules for paid holidays and additional local holidays based on agreements. Upcoming changes will impact policies as the Indian government consolidates 25 labor laws into four codes: Social Security, Industrial Relations, Occupational Safety, and Wages. This guide provides key information on leave policies in India. Employers hiring employees from India or through an Employer of Record (EOR) in India must understand these regulations to ensure compliance and effective workforce management.

Annual Leave (Vacation)

In India, paid leave regulations stipulate a minimum of 15 days of paid holiday annually after completing 240 days of employment, as outlined in the employment contract. It is common for contracts to include additional leave days and rules on carrying over unused days to the next year. All paid time off (PTO) requests must be submitted at least 15 days before the leave starts and approved by the employer, works committee, and manager to ensure work continuity.

Public Holidays

  • Workers are entitled to 12 public holidays annually.
  • The default countrywide holidays are listed below, but employees can opt to exchange these for their regional or religious holidays.
  • Holidays falling on a Saturday are observed on the preceding Friday.
  • Holidays falling on a Sunday are observed on the following Monday.

Public Holidays 2024:

  • 1 Jan 2024 (Monday): New Year
  • 26 Jan 2024 (Friday): Republic Day (National Holiday)
  • 25 Mar 2024 (Monday): Holi
  • 29 Mar 2024 (Friday): Good Friday
  • 11 Apr 2024 (Thursday): Id-ul-Fitr* (Tentative, based on Lunar Calendar)
  • 15 Aug 2024 (Thursday): Independence Day (National Holiday)
  • 19 Aug 2024 (Monday): Raksha Bandhan
  • 26 Aug 2024 (Monday): Janmashtami
  • 2 Oct 2024 (Wednesday): Gandhi Jayanti (National Holiday)
  • 11 Oct 2024 (Friday): Dusshera
  • 31 Oct 2024 (Thursday): Diwali
  • 15 Nov 2024 (Friday): Guru Nanak’s Birthday
  • 25 Dec 2024 (Wednesday): Christmas

Sick Days

Sick leave policies in India differ by state, with local Shops and Establishments (S&E) Acts often providing between 12 to 24 days of sick and casual leave. Additionally, the Standing Orders (SO) Act may have its own sick leave provisions. Employees typically receive the most favorable leave entitlements available, whether from the S&E Act, the SO Act, or their employer’s service rules.

Maternity Leave

  • Indian law mandates maternity leave for female employees, but there is no provision for paternity or parental leave for male employees, unless specified in the employment contract.
  • Maternity leave is primarily governed by the Maternity Benefits Act of 1961 (MB Act) and the Employees' State Insurance Act of 1948 (ESI Act). The ESI Act applies to employees earning a monthly salary of up to INR 21,000. Employees not covered under the ESI Act receive their maternity benefits according to the MB Act.
  • Under the MB Act, female employees with fewer than two surviving children are entitled to 26 weeks of maternity leave. For those with two or more surviving children, the entitlement is reduced to 12 weeks. Additionally, the MB Act provides 12 weeks of leave to women who legally adopt a child under three months old and to commissioning mothers (i.e., those who have children through surrogacy).
  • In cases where a pregnant woman faces health complications due to pregnancy, delivery, premature birth, miscarriage, medical termination of pregnancy, or a tubectomy operation, she is entitled to an additional month of paid leave.
  • For instances of miscarriage or medical termination of pregnancy, a female employee is entitled to six weeks of paid leave. Following a tubectomy operation, she is entitled to two weeks of paid leave.
  • The MB Act also includes provisions for nursing breaks and a medical bonus of INR 3,500 for employees if the employer does not offer post-natal confinement and care.
  • Recent amendments to the MB Act require employers with 50 or more employees to provide crèche facilities within a prescribed distance from the workplace. Female employees are allowed up to four visits to the crèche each day, including rest breaks. Furthermore, if the nature of a female employee's job permits, she may work from home after maternity leave, based on mutually agreed terms with the employer.

Hassle-Free Leave Policy Management in India  with Gloroots

At Gloroots, we understand that navigating leave policies can be complex, especially when expanding your business and hiring across borders. Our platform ensures compliance with India labor laws, maintains clear leave balances, processes leave requests smoothly, and generates comprehensive leave reports. By partnering with Gloroots, you can focus on scaling your business while we handle the complexities of employee leave management. Contact us to discover how Gloroots can simplify your HR processes and enhance your operations in India.

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