Gradual introduction of labor codes on cards

The Ministry of Labor is considering introducing the four labor codes in a phased manner, starting with the least controversial and labor-friendly codes.

The two codes likely to come out of the next financial year will be the social security code and the safety, health and working conditions code. The idea is to move forward with the codes, the implementation of which has been pending for more than a year now, people familiar with the matter said.

Parliament adopted the Wages Code in 2019 while the Industrial Relations Code, the Social Security Code and the Safety, Health and Working Conditions Code were adopted in 2020.

“There is thinking at the highest level about implementing the codes in phases, although no decision has yet been made,” a senior government official familiar with the news told ET on condition of anonymity. deliberations.

Labor Secretary Sunil Barthwal did not respond to a question from ET.

The 2020 Social Security Code provides for universal social security, starting with gig workers who would be covered by the Employees State Insurance Corporation, in addition to paving the way for the government to merge all existing social security schemes under the code.

The Safety, Health and Working Conditions Code (OSH&WC Code) provides for longer working hours, double pay for overtime beyond fixed working hours and a one-time contractors license and recruitment agencies, allowing them to operate across India under one registration, as opposed to the current situation where they have to obtain separate licenses to operate in each location.

“Since the codes have been enacted for a long time, the central government would introduce them in a phased manner and could approach the states to expedite the framework rules for the Social Security Code and the OSH&WC Code which are considered the least controversial” , said labor expert KR Shyam Sundar.

The other two codes, the Wages Code, 2019 and the Industrial Relations Code, 2020 have financial implications for the employer and as a result the industry has requested more time from the government to overcome the Covid-19 crisis. 19 before she took further action. financial burden.

The Wage Code provides for a legal minimum wage for the whole country while capping allowances at 50% of wages, a measure which will cost the employer more and would require a modification of the existing wage structure.

The Industrial Relations Code, on the other hand, relaxes hiring and firing rules for employers while limiting the bargaining power of unions and greatly reducing the ability of employees or unions to strike.

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