New Delhi: In a breather for private firms, the Supreme Court on Friday directed that no coercive action should be taken till July last week against these companies for failing to pay full wages to their employees during the coronavirus-induced lockdown period. Also Read - COVID-19: Sourav Ganguly Fan Club to Distribute Masks, Feed Poor on His Birthday

The three-judge bench was of the opinion that industries and employees need each other and they should sit together to arrive at a settlement on the issue of payment of wages. Also Read - Robot to The Rescue: Robotic Trolley 'Gollar' Serves Medicines, Food at Quarantine Ward in Mumbai

Further, the top-court bench also asked the state governments to facilitate a settlement process and file its report with the labour commissioners concerned. Also Read - Brazilian President Bolsonaro Tests Positive For Coronavirus, Undergoing Treatment

It also directed the Centre to file an additional affidavit within four weeks with regard to the legality of Ministry of Home Affairs’ March 29 circular which had mandated payment of full wages during the lockdown period.

The matter was then posted for further hearing in the last week of July. The bench was hearing the petitions filed by various companies against the Centre’s March 29 circular.