(1) Every person having a claim against the owner of a coal mine shall prefer such claim before the Commissioner within thirty days from the specified date:
Provided that if the Commissioner is satisfied that the claimant was prevented by sufficient cause from preferring the claim within the said period of thirty days, he may entertain the claim within a further period of thirty days but not thereafter.
 (2) Without prejudice to the provisions of sub-section (1), claims in relation to a provident fund, pension fund, gratuity fund or any other fund established for the welfare of the persons employed by the owner of a coal mine or group of coal mines may be filed on behalf of the persons so employed by the Coal Mines Provident Fund Commissioner appointed by the Central Government under section 3C of the Coal Mines Provident Fund, Family Pension and Bonus Schemes Act, 1948 (46 of 1948);  and claims in relation to any other matter may be filed on behalf of all or any of the persons so employed or any group of such persons, by any Trade Union, registered under the Trade Unions Act, 1926 (16 of 1926), or, where no such claim has been filed by any Trade Union, by the Chief Labour Commissioner (Central) appointed by the Central Government or any officer subordinate to him; and the claims so made shall be deemed to have been made by the persons having a claim against the owner of a coal mine or group of coal mines:
Provided that no such claim shall be made by the Coal Mines Provident Fund Commissioner 3or the Trade Union or the Chief Labour Commissioner (Central) or any officer subordinate to him, in relation to a person who has already made a claim under sub-section (1).
 (3) Where any claim, not being a claim which was time-barred on the 31st day of January, 1973, was preferred under sub-section (1) within the period specified therefor and was rejected merely on the ground that such claim was time-barred, such claim shall be deemed not to have been rejected and the Commissioner shall restore on his file such claim and shall deal with it in the manner specified in section 23.
1. Section 20 renumbered as sub-section (1) thereof by Act 41 of 1973, Section 6 (w.e.f. 1-5-1973).
2. Inserted by Section 6, ibid., (w.e.f. 1-5-1973).
3. Inserted by Act 22 of 1978, Section 13 (w.e.f. 1-5-1973).
4. Inserted by Act 22 of 1978, Section 13 (w.e.f. 1-11-1975).
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