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Indian parliament upper house passes 3 Labour Code bills

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The Rajya Sabha today passed three of the four labour code bills that comprise the government’s flagship labour reforms. The Lok Sabha passed these—Industrial Relations Code, 2020; Code on Occupational Safety, Health & Working Conditions Code, 2020; and Social Security Code, 2020—yesterday. Now these need President Ram Nath Kovind’s signature to turn laws.

Soon after the bills were passed, the Rajya Sabha was adjourned indefinitely in view of the coronavirus infection, according to Indian media reports.

The government claims that bills will bring in reforms to ensure easier compliance with labour standards worldwide. This, in turn, will help bring in foreign investment.

The code on Social Security Bill extends social security funds only to workers for app-based firms like Uber, Ola, Swiggy and Zomato. But labour unions claim more is needed as these workers continue to remain in a legal grey zone. They are often treated as independent partners who are not covered under most labour regulations.

The proposed bill on health and occupational safety helps only those working in factories, mines and docks and are not universal in nature, contend the labour unions, which have joined hands with the farmers in their protest against the farm sector bills.

In the last six years, many multi-stakeholder consultations were held to discuss the issues. The bills take into account the holistic development of the country by keeping the labour interest uppermost in the mind, according to Santosh Kumar Gangwar, minister of state with independent charge in the ministry of labour and employment.

Twenty nine labour laws are being subsumed in the four labour codes, the minister told Lok Sabha. Out of the four, the Code on Wages has already been passed by parliament and has become law.

Gangwar informed the house that the entire workforce of the country will now be entitled for obtaining benefits under different codes. He added that the definition of migrant workers has also been amended.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk (DS)

The Rajya Sabha today passed three of the four labour code bills that comprise the government’s flagship labour reforms. The Lok Sabha passed these-Industrial Relations Code, 2020; Code on Occupational Safety, Health & Working Conditions Code, 2020; and Social Security Code, 2020-yesterday. Now these need President Ram Nath Kovind’s signature to turn laws.



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