Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Labour & Employment Santosh Kumar Gangwar, led a delegation to Mendoza, Argentina for the G-20 Labour& Employment Ministers’ Meeting, held on 6-7, September, 2018.Applauding the Argentine Presidency for holding the joint meeting of the Education and Labour Ministers, Shri Gangwar said that the coordination between these Ministries is needed to strike a right balance between the supply and demand of the labour in a country. He reiterated that India is committed to job security, wage security and social security to all workers in the country. All round efforts have been made to promote job creation in India over the last few years through various schemes and programmes. He also stressed on inclusive development and signing of Social Security Agreements amongst the G-20 countries for ensuring portability of social security benefits to its workers.Labour& Employment Minister highlighted India’s initiatives for promoting skill development like Pradhan Mantri Kaushal VikasYojana and setting up of Sector Skill Councils and for employment creation like the Start Up India and the MUDRA scheme. He added that the process of simplifying and rationalizing nearly 40 labour laws into 4 labour codes has been startedwhich would not only lead to effective enforcement, better compliance but also ensure universal applicability of various welfare measures.
The Minister said that new forms of work and digital economy provides employment opportunities and flexibility in working scenario, especially for women, youth and disabled. It also opens all kinds of possibilities for women who have to make balance between work and family responsibilities. It provides flexibility in working hours for these groups and even possibility of work from home.Santosh Kumar Gangwarhighlighted the various initiatives taken for ensuring social security to its workers. Employees Provident Fund Organization (EPFO) provides social security in the form of PF, Pension and Death Benefit to nearly 60 million workers. In the last two years, it has added 10 million new workers under its ambit. In order to facilitate transitions from informal to formal sector Government has started the PradhanMantriRozgarProtsahanYojana where the Government will bear the entire 12% contribution of the PF given by the Employer. Employees State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) is providing health care services in more than 500 districts in India. In the last two years, over 10 million workers have been linked to the ESIC.The Government of India’s recently launched landmark scheme, Ayushman Bharat will also ensure better health care of the workers.
Around 500 million workers and their families are expected to benefit through this scheme. Pradhan Mantri Jeevan JyotiBimaYojana (PMJJY) and Pradhan Mantri Suraksha BimaYojana (PMSBY) have been launched to provide for insurance cover in the case of disability or death to the workers engaged in the unorganised sector. Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Act 2017 and Unorganized Workers Social Security Act, 2008 have been enacted. He reiterated signing of Social Security of Agreements amongst the G20 countries for ensuring portability of social security benefits to its workers.He stressed on design and implementation of policies for greater and easier participation of women in the labour market. Shri Gangwar said, “we are implementing policies and programmes that ensure their education, training, skilling, entrepreneurship, minimum wages and social protection for women. Such measures include providing skills that enable women to become self-employed or entrepreneurs; creating online platform for women to sell their products; enhancing paid maternity leave, promoting flexible working hours and opportunity to work from home”.G-20 Labour and Employment Ministerial Declaration and Joint G-20 Education and Labour and Employment Ministerial Declaration were adopted and will be presented in the next summit of Leaders/ Heads of the State later this year.