Amended Factories Act will benefit women: Cong

New Delhi, March 30 | Updated: Mar 31 2005, 05:30am hrs
Welcoming the decision by the UPA government to amend the Factories Act, Congress said that it would now enable women to work at night shifts in factories.

Saying that lack of safety in the workplace was a major concern for women, Congress spokesperson Jayanti Natarajan told mediapersons here on Wednesday that it has led to a decline in the workforce. On the other hand, activists had found that laws meant to protect women would promote their advancement, she said.

Ms Natarajan said that Congress president Sonia Gandhi, as well as constituents of the UPA government, were committed to womens empowerment. Hence, providing safeguards for protection of women workers was a welcome step.

On Tuesday, the government decided to amend the 1948 Factories Act to allow women to work in late night shifts provided the employer guaranteed to put adequate safeguards in place for them.

Talking about the alarming depletion of the tiger population in the country, and the fact that tigers had now become extinct in Sariska National Park in Rajasthan, Ms Natarajan said that Congress had demanded the initiation of an inquiry in the park to pinpoint lapses as well as a nexus, if any, between the forest department, state government officials and poachers to hunt the protected animals.

She said that it was a sad commentary on the negligence and corruption of the BJP-ruled Rajasthan government. Stating that the previous NDA regime had claimed an increase in tiger population as part of its India Shining programme, she said a recent CBI report had, in fact, clearly said the opposite.