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Protecting and Safeguarding the Interests of Workers Ministry of Labour & Employment




 INFO-NUGGETS - UPA
Labour & Employment

Sudhir Tiwari*


            The broad mandate of the Ministry of Labour & Employment is to protect and safeguard the interests of workers who constitute the poor, deprived and disadvantaged sections of the society.  

Legislative Initiatives

Amendments in the following Acts have been carried out during last three years:

·         The Employees’ Compensation Act, 1923
·         The Payment of Gratuity Act, 1972
·         The Employees’ State Insurance Act, 1948
·         The Plantations Labour Act, 1951
·         The Industrial Disputes Act, 1947
Bills for amendment in the following Acts have been introduced in the Parliament:
·         The Mines Act, 1952
·         The Labour Laws (Exemption from Furnishing Returns and Maintaining      Registers by Certain Establishments) Act, 1988.
·         The Inter-State Migrant Workmen (Regulation of Employment and Conditions of Service) Act, 1979. 

Major Initiatives

Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana
·               The scheme envisages provision of issuance of smart cards to the beneficiaries to facilitate cashless transaction upto Rs.30,000/-. The coverage of the Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana has been extended to construction workers, street vendors, railway porters & vendors, MGNREGA workers, domestic workers and beedi workers. As on 17 May, 2012, more than 2.96 crore cards have been issued.

Employees Provident Fund Organization
·               The Computerization Plan of Employees Provident Fund Organization has been implemented, which would enable the members to have portability of their account and the services of “any time any where” on real time basis.

Employees’ State Insurance Corporation

·               The Employees’ State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) has taken new initiatives to improve the delivery of service under the ESI Scheme. The number of Insured Persons (IP) at the end of March, 2012 has touched 1.55 crore while the number of beneficiaries has reached 6.02 crore.
Child Labour
·               With the efforts of the Ministry, the occurrence of Child Labour is decreasing in the country.  As per NSSO figure, the number of working children has reduced from 90.75 lakh in 2004-05 to 49.84 lakh in 2009-10 which is a reduction of about 45%.

Employment & Training

·               Vocational Training is being provided through a network of 9480 Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) where about 13.38 lakh training seats are available.  Scheme for Upgradation of 100 ITIs with domestic resources has been completed.  Upgradation of  400 ITIs with World Bank assistance and 1,396 ITIs under PPP mode is being  undertaken.
·            Under the Skill Development Initiative (SDI) Scheme which involves Modular Employable Skills (MES) Framework, about 13.68 people have been trained / tested and 10.22 lakh certified since inception. 
·            6951 Vocational Training Providers (VTPs) have been registered across and 35 Assessing Bodies empanelled under the Scheme.
·            Scheme for setting up  of  new 1,500 ITIs and 5,000 Skill Development Centres is being taken up under the Kaushal Vikas Yojana.
·            Skill Development Plan for Youth in Left Wing Extremism (LWE), supplementing infrastructure deficiencies in ITIs in NE states and Sikkim and modernization of all Employment Exchanges in the country under e-governance plan are being taken up.

Industrial Relations

·                  During last three years, industrial relations situation in the Central sphere, by and large, has been peaceful through the intervention of the Office of the Chief Labour Commissioner(C).

(PIB Features.)

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