Skip to main content

India wants labour laws to ensure higher investment, ease in doing business, sans social safety net for jobless

By Our Representative
Senior Narendra Modi minister Narendra Singh Tomar has told the G-20 labour ministers’ conference in Melbourne that the Government of India is all set to amend the “labour laws in order to encourage investment, ease of doing business and entrepreneurship”. Suggesting that hire and fire would be the touchstone of the new amendment, the Union labour minister however did not utter a single word on going for social safety net, as it exists in western countries, in case a worker is hired from the workplace.
In sharp contrast to the Indian labour minister’s remarks, the Melbourne declaration of G-20 labour minister said, while it was necessary to have “comprehensive growth strategies that empower business to generate jobs and opportunity”, the need was also to promote and create “quality jobs”, and tackle “the economic and social consequences of unemployment, underemployment, inequality and social exclusion.” It added, these should be seen as “priorities” of the G-20 economies. In the west, the state is obliged to support the unemployed.
Tomar, whose speech has been released by the Public Information Bureau of the Government of India, said, “Amendments have also been proposed to enhance safety at workplace and working conditions, especially for women. Use of personal protective equipment has been made mandatory for hazardous industries. Amendment in legislation has also been proposed to allow night work for women. This would promote participation of women in labour force.” Then, there would be a minimum age of employment, and a mandatory national floor level of minimum wages.”
Quite in line with Government of India’s neo-liberal views, Tomar suggested that the hire and fire policy alone was capable of “requirements to boost labour market participation.” He said, “Structural unemployment and underemployment are biggest challenges on account of the mismatch between demand and supply factors of employment and rigidities in the labour market.” He talked of a adopting a “multipronged strategy” of demand and supply labour which he believed would reduce unemployment.
“We are in favor of labour mobility, skill portability and harmonization of skills qualification framework for a paradigm shift of labourers from low skill based work to high productivity jobs”, he said in his written speech, adding, “Active labour market policies in our country are recognized as an important strategy.” And for this, public employment exchanges are being “revamped into career counseling centres for assessing local job scenario and organizing job fairs for efficient placement.”
All this, he said, would mean “measures to simplify the labour laws”, adding, under the past policy which sought to protect labour, “the rate of employment growth was less than 1 per cent”, with youth unemployment rate touching 6.6 per cent and underemployment rate 5.7 per cent. “Every year almost 10 million people enter labour force in India”, he added, one reason why things become worse. The two-day conference wounded up on September 11.

Comments

TRENDING

World Bank clarifies: Its 26th rank to India not for universal access to power but for ease of doing business

By Our Representative
In a major embarrassment to the Government of India, the World Bank has reportedly clarified that it has not ranked India 26th out of 130 countries for providing power to its population. The top international banker’s clarification comes following Union Power Minister Piyush Goyal’s claim that India has “improved to 26 position from 99” in access to electricity in just one year.

Mental health: India's 95% patients "deprived" of medical care, treatment gap 70%

By Moin Qazi*
Among the many challenges India faces, the most underappreciated is the ongoing mental health crisis. Mental illness is actually India’s ticking bomb. An estimated 56 million Indians suffer from depression, and 38 million from anxiety disorders. For those who suffer from mental illness, life can seem like a terrible prison from which there is no hope of escape; they are left forlorn and abandoned, stigmatized, shunned and misunderstood.

Modi model? "Refusal" to build Narmada's micro canals, keep Kutch dry; help industry

By Medha Patkar*
This is the latest photograph of the Kutch Branch Canal (KBC) of the Sardar Sarovar, as of April 8! What does it show, expose, and what memories do you recall? Is it dry or dead? Is it a canal or a carcass of the same?

Bill Gates "promoting" GMO, Bt cotton, like cartels that have roots in Hitler's Germany

By Our Representative
World-renowned environmental leader and ecologist Dr Vandana Shiva has expressed concern that Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft Corporation, has joined the bandwagon of “a poison cartel of three" – Monsanto and Bayer, Syngenta and ChemChina, Dow and DuPont – all of whom allegedly have “roots in Hitler’s Germany and finding chemicals to kill people”.

Indian talc products contain "contaminated" asbestos structures, can cause cancer: Study

Counterview Desk
A recent study, using polarizing light microscopy, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), electron diffraction, and X-ray analysis on multiple over-the-counter Indian talc products for the presence of asbestos, has concluded that large quantities of body talc products are likely to pose a public health risk for asbestos-related diseases, especially for the cancers related to asbestos exposure.

Why are you silent on discrimination against Dalit jawans? Macwan questions Modi

By Rajiv Shah
Close on the heels of releasing his book in Gujarati, "Bhed Bharat", which lists 319 cases of atrocities against Dalits and Adivasis across the country over the last five years, well-known Gujarat Dalit rights leader Martin Macwan has shot an open letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, telling him the reasons why he does not want vote for the BJP.

Jharkhand Adivasi lynched to death by mob "chanting" Jai Shri Ram: Fact-finding team

Counterview Desk
On April 10, 2019, Prakash Lakda, a 50-year old Adivasi of Jurmu village of Gumla’s Dumri block, was lynched to death by a mob of men from the Sahu community of neighbouring Jairagi village. Three other victims from Jurmu – Peter Kerketta, Belarius Minj and Janerius Minj – sustained severe injuries due to the beating by the mob. A fact-finding team of Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha (JJM), comprising of several activists and representatives of member organisations, conducted a fact-finding inquiry into the incident on April 14-15.

Investigation shows Narmada downstream "seriously" polluted. Reason: apathy, greed

By Rohit Prajapati, Krishnakant, Swati Desai*
Our investigation regarding quality of water flowing in the Narmada river downstream of the Sardar Sarovar Dam (SSD), dated April 6, 2019, between 11.00 a.m. to 4.00 p.m. reiterates, what is commonly known now, that the Sardar Sarovar Project (SSP) is planned without considering its impact on the downstream Narmada River stretch of 161 kilometres, its ecology, biodiversity and fishery, and lakhs of people living close to and dependent on the river directly or indirectly. This, in turn, has led to its present disastrous state.

Emergence of a rare Dalit teacher in IIT-Kanpur "disturbed" certain faculty members

By PS Krishnan, IAS (Retd)*
Dr Subrahmanyam Sadrela, a faculty member in the Department of Aerospace Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology (IIT)-Kanpur since January 1, 2018, and one of the rare Dalit members of the faculty in IIT group of institutions, is facing the threat of revocation of his PhD thesis, and thereby also jeopardizing his job and career.

RTE in remote areas? Govt of India "plans" to close down 2.4 lakh schools

By Srijita Majumder*
The Right to Education (RTE) Act, 2009, came into effect on April 1, 2010, for the first time made it obligatory on the part of the State to provide free and compulsory education to all children from 6-14 years of age in India. The Act, despite its limitations, had progressive elements like neighbourhood schools, community participation, ban on corporal punishment, no detention, continuous and comprehensive evaluation and it hence it appeared that India was not far from achieving universal elementary education.