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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Need to Amend the Existing Labour Laws

The Union Labour & Employment Minister Shri Mallikarjun Kharge has informed the Rajya Sabha that review/amendment of labour laws is a continuous process in order to bring them in tune with the emerging needs of the economy including to maintain growth in the manufacturing sector.
Recent amendments carried out include those under the Payment of Wages Act, 1936, the Payment of Bonus Act, 1965, the Apprentices Act, 1961, the Payment of Gratuity Act, 1972, the Employees’ State Insurance Act, 1948, the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947, the Plantation Labour Act, 1951, the Maternity Benefit Act, 1961 and the Workmen’s Compensation Act, 1923. In addition the Government introduced in Parliament the Labour Laws (Exemption from Furnishing Returns and Maintaining of Registers by Certain Establishments) (Amendment) Bill, 2011, the Mines (Amendment) Bill, 2011 and the Inter-State Migrant Workmen (Regulation of Employment and Conditions of Service)(Amendment)Bill, 2011.
The estimated current capacity for Skill Development in the country is about 5.3 million. The limited capacity is contributing to skill shortage. Further, the change in technology, use of new technologies and shifting of industries from one place to other is also contributing towards skill mismatch.
The National Policy on Skill Development (NPSD) formulated in 2009 has identified a need for considerable expansion and diverse approaches to raise the capacity of the existing system extensively over a limited period and set a target for providing skill training to 500 million persons by the year 2022. The Policy also envisages expansion of coverage of vocations.
The Policy has allocated targets for different Ministries/Departments. The Ministry of Labour & Employment would train 100 million and the roadmap to achieve the target is through the various skill development schemes viz. opening of second and third shifts in existing and private Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs), setting up of 1500 new Industrial Training Institutes and 5000 Skill Development Centres (SDC) under Public Private Partnership mode, increasing seating capacity under Apprentice Training Scheme, increasing existing capacity of Directorate General of Employment & Training (DGE&T) Institutes and training & testing under Skill Development Initiative etc..
The Minister was replying to a written question whether Government has any proposal to strengthen or amend the existing labour laws as they are insufficient to maintain growth in the manufacturing sector; the details thereof and whether rapid growth has created a skill shortage and skill mismatch in the country; and if so, the details thereof and the steps taken by Government to solve this issue?
Source : PIB release, March 21, 2012

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