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Saturday, June 27, 2015

Centre to bring in new labour codes in wages and other areas to protect workers

The Union Labour Ministry proposes to come out with four labour codes in the areas of wages, industrial relations, social security and working conditions to strengthen safety and social security of workers.

"We are going to bring four labour codes. Labour Code is very, very important. It is going to play a major role. One will be for wages. There is complication in wages being paid. We would like to bring all wages under one code.

"Second is Industrial Relation Code. We will amalgamate all laws. Third is social security code and fourth one is working conditions and safety. Safety and security of the workers will be strengthened under these codes," Union Minister of State for Labour Bandaru Dattatreya said today.

He was addressing a regional conference of state Labour Ministers and officials from southern states here.

The Government is holding tri-partite meetings with representatives of trade unions, employers and Central and State governments on a host of labour-related issues.

Noting that there are a number of laws concerning labour and employment, Dattatreya said his Ministry is doing "simplification, rationalisation and amalgamation" of legislations to promote productivity and welfare of workers.

The NDA Government is bringing in different initiatives like Universal Account Number (UAN), skill development, among others, for the benefit of workers, the Minister maintained.

He emphasised the need for skill development for workmen and the Centre's initiative towards the endeavour. Speaking on the occasion, Kerala Labour Minister Shibu Baby John said violation of labour laws is rampant in India.

Referring to the issue involving Indian diplomat Devyani Khobragade, who was accused of underpaying her maid in the US, he said developed countries try to protect workers.

"In developed countries, the laws are so strict, every employee or person, has to be paid minimum wages. So, they even went to the extent of prosecuting a diplomat. I am not going into the veracity of this," John said.

"Here, in the country, there is blatant violation of minimum wages. So, when we say that labour is the problem for all that, actually what is happening in India is there is more violation of labour laws than what is being discussed." Telangana Labour Minister Nayani Narasimha Reddy and his Karnataka counterpart Parameshwara Naik spoke about labour welfare schemes being implemented by their States.

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