Industry should move much faster in adopting ‘Occupational Safety and Health standards’ irrespective of the Code: Secretary, Labour and Employment

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NEW DELHI, 28 December 2022: Ms Arti Ahuja, Secretary (L&E), Ministry of Labour and Employment, Govt of India yesterday said that the many states have already notified their rules under the new Labour Codes, and the Center is following up with the other states.


Addressing the 88th AGM of FICCI AIOE (All India Organization of Employers), Ms Ahuja said that no other country in the world has a database of its unorganized workers, and the e-Shram portal has today more than 29 crore people registered on the portal. “We are in the process of linking the portal to career portals along with various skilling centers. We also have the National Career Services portal and every month nearly 5 lakh vacancies are posted. I would urge all employers to post their vacancies on the portal,” she emphasized.


Ms Ahuja also stated that Occupational Safety and Health is very crucial and there is a separate code also on it. She urged industry to move ahead much faster in implementing irrespective of the Code. “I urge the industry to ensure that occupational safety and health standards relating to the particular industry are in force,” she added.


Speaking on the rights of the contract workers, the Secretary stated that they are also entitled to minimum wages and bonuses, etc., and industry must ensure that those entitlements of contract and outsourced workers are also given to them. “It is a duty that is incumbent upon us as citizens as equal partners in the economy and hence the industry must be cognizant of this,” she added.


Highlighting the pension scheme for the workers, Ms Ahuja said that the government already has a ‘Donate a Pension’ scheme in place. “I would strongly urge the industry to intercede with your employees and professional people if you can take up donation of pensions on a campaign mode for outsourced or contractual workers. This will help them a lot as it is a form of social security,” added the Secretary.


Ms Ahuja further stated that the gig and platform work are now becoming a reality and it is dynamic in nature as more and more people are opting for these platforms. “Let us also have a separate vertical on these platforms. The aggregators working in this sector are not so federated under any industry body. This is something which is the need of the hour as aggregators are working for the workers and all this needs to be collated,” she asserted.


Mr Subhrakant Panda, President, FICCI said that the government has been taking several transformative steps towards making India more competitive and attractive for investments. “The legislative reforms in labour, financial sector and several others have already put India in an advantageous position,” he added. The Labour Codes will establish transparent, answerable and simple mechanism reducing to one registration, one license and one return for all codes and implementation of these codes will enable India to further improve the Ease of Doing Business, stated Mr Panda.


Mr Shishir Jaipuria, President, AIOE said that the government’s proactive measures in dealing with contentious labour issues have been welcomed and hailed as one of the most progressive reforms. “Digitalization of the processes under the new Labour Codes currently and in future as well will lead to ease of compliance both for the employers and employees and provide social security to the informal sector of India,” he added.


Mr Alok B Shriram, President- Elect, AIOE said that the reforms brought by the government in operational areas, using ICT in compliance issue, grievance handling has no doubt reduced bureaucratic hurdles and avoidable paperwork. “The much-needed labour reforms will pave the way for ease of doing business, attract investment, social security for all and will also lead to generate employment,” he added.


Mr Arun Chawla, Director General, FICCI said that technology is being embraced by all the partners to catch up with the world and make India a competitive economy. “India in this most challenging time remains the shining star in the comity of nations,” he added.

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