What happens when Eid festival (a public holiday) coincides with Friday?

Nothing as far as the labour law is concerned. Our labour law is ignorant of situations like these and the employees of resorts and hotels has to depend on the generosity of the resort managements to be offered another day in lieu of these two public holidays coinciding or one-and-half-times pay for working on such a day or situations like these. The relevant clause in the labour law is brief. It reads:

“Working on a public holiday
38. An employee required to work normal hours on a public holiday shall be
paid at least an amount equivalent to half of the minimum wages earned on a
normal day of work in addition to over time.

The clause ends there and there is no further ado it. However the need to add further qualifications and clarifications to the clause is evident from problems like this.

In different parts of the world there are provisions for situations like these where two public holidays coincide and here are some excerpts.



….If a public holiday falls on a day that would ordinarily be a working day for the employee (and the employee is not on vacation), the employee gets the day off and receives holiday pay for that day.
If a public holiday falls on a day that would not ordinarily be a working day for the employee (and the employee is not on vacation), the employee gets a substitute day off and receives holiday pay for that day. The substitute day off must be a day that ordinarily would be a working day for the employee. The substitute day off can be in advance of the public holiday. The employer can also designate another day within three months after the public holiday. As well, the employer and employee can agree in writing on a substitute day that is within 12 months after the public holiday. There a ministry policies that deal with irregularly scheduled employees.__________________________________________________


…You do not have an automatic right to take bank or public holidays off work, with or without pay. This will depends on your employment contract.


…If a standard public holiday falls on a weekend, a substitute public holiday will sometimes be observed on the first non-weekend day (usually Monday) after the weekend, whether by virtue of the public holiday legislation or by ad hoc proclamation. If a worker is required to work on a public holiday or substituted public holiday, they will usually be entitled to be paid at a holiday penalty rate.____________________________________________________________
…When the usual date of a bank or public holiday falls on a Saturday or Sunday, a substitute day is given, normally the following Monday. For example in 2009, Boxing Day is actually on Saturday, 26 December, so there is a substitute bank holiday on Monday, 28 December.____________________________________________________________

Coming back to the issue of public holidays, different countries have different number of public holidays and for different reasons. Here in Maldives we have comparably fewer public holidays than in other neighboring countries. Below is a list of a few neighboring countries and their public holidays:

Sri lanka (27 public holidays)

Tamil Thai Pongal Day
Duruthu Full Moon Poya Day
National Day
Navam Full Moon Poya Day
Maha Sivarathri Day
Milad-Un-Nabi (Holy Prophet’s Birthday)
Medin Full Moon Poya Day
Good Friday
Day prior to Sinhala and Tamil New Year Day
Sinhala and Tamil New Year Day
Additional Bank Holiday
Bak Full Moon Poya Day
May Day
Wesak Full Moon Poya Day
Day following Wesak Full Moon Poya Day
Poson Full Moon Poya Day
Esala Full Moon Poya Day
Nikini Full Moon Poya Day
Binara Full Moon Poya Day
Id-Ul-Fitr (Ramazan Festival Day)
Vap Full Moon Poya Day
Deepavali Festival Day
Il Full Moon Poya Day
Id-Ul-Allah (Hadji Festival Day)
Unduvap Full Moon Poya Day
Christmas Eve
Christmas Day

Thailand(20 public holidays)

1 January – New Year’s Day
Chinese New Year (new moon day of third lunar month)
Magha Puja Day (full moon day of third lunar month)
6 April – Chakri Memorial Day
13–15 April – Songkran Festival
1 May – National Labour Day
5 May – Coronation Day
9May – Royal Ploughing Ceremony
Visakha Puja Day (full moon day of sixth lunar month)
Asalha Puja Day (full moon day of eighth lunar month)
Buddhist Lent Day “Wan Kao Pansa” (day after full moon day of eighth lunar month)
12 August – H.M. The Queen‘s Birthday
End of Buddhist Lent Day “Wan Awk Pansa” (full moon day of eleventh lunar month)
23 October – Chulalongkorn Day
Loy Krathong (full moon day of twelfth lunar month)
5 December – H.M. The King‘s Birthday
10 December – Constitution Day
31 December – New Year’s Eve

Bangladesh (17 public holidays)

21 February 2010 – International Mother Language Day
27 February 2010* – Eid-e-Miladunnabi
17 March 2010 – Birth day of the Father of the Nation, Bangabandhu
26 March 2010 – Independence Day
1 May 2010 – International Labour Day
27 May 2010 – Buddha Purnima
28 July 2010* – Shab-e-Barat
13 August 2009* – Posthumous
15 August 2010 – National Mourning Day
1 September 2010* – Janmastami Bangladesh Revises Janmastami Public Hpliday Date Again
7 September 2010* – [Laylat al-Qadr|Shab-e-Qadar]
10 September 2010* – Jamat-ul-Bida
11 September 2010* – Eid ul-Fitr
17 October 2010 – Durga Puja
17 November 2010* – Eid ul-Adha
16 December 2010 – Victory Day
25 December 2010 – Christmas Day

Nepal (17 public holidays)

1 January – New Year’s Day
14 and 15 January – Makar Sankranti
20 January – Saraswati Puja
12 February – Maha Shivaratri
24 February – Education Day
28 February and 1 March – Phagu Purnima
14 April – Nepali New Year
24 August – Raksha Bandhan
25 August – Gaijatra
1 September – Krishna Janmashtami
10 September – Dar Khane Din
11 Septenber – [ Teej in Nepal, fasting by women ]
4 to 7 November – Diwali

South Africa (12 public holidays)

1 January – New Year’s Day
21 March – Human Rights Day Sharpeville massacre
The Friday – before Easter Sunday Good Friday
The Monday – following Easter Sunday Family Day
27 April – Freedom Day
1 May – Workers’ Day
16 June – [Youth Day] Soweto uprising
9 August – National Women’s Day
24 September – Heritage Day
16 December – Day of Reconciliation
25 December – Christmas Day
26 December – Day of Goodwill

Maldives (11 public holidays)

National day
Prophet’s birthday
1st sitting of the peoples Majlis
The day Maldives embraced Islam
Independence day
Beginning of Ramadan
Eid al fitr
Victory day
Republic day
Hajj day
Eid al alha

India (11 public holidays)

1 January – New Year
14 Makarara Sankrati – (calculated)
26 January – Republic Day
1 May – Labour day
15 August – Independence Day: Marks the day India achieved independence from the British Empire
10 September Eid ul-Fitr (calculated)
2 October – Gandhi Jayanti: Birth Day of Mahatma Gandhi
5 November – Diwali: Ram returned to his kingdom after defeating Ravan Diwali
14 November – Childrens day: Nehru birthday
16 November to November 19 Eid al-Adha (calculated)
25 December – Christmas

So the number of public holidays cannot be as burdensome on businesses as in other countries than in Maldives. In fact Maldives has far fewer public holidays than other neighbouring countries, so employers shall not feel pressed to be mean and frugal when it comes to allowing the employees days off with their families in well deserved public holidays.



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