According to an official press release, the wage hike would be effective from September 2002. The minimum wages for unskilled workers in the Cenral sphere vary from Rs 54.27 to Rs 129.93 (including VDA) and for agricultural from Rs 86.63 to Rs 129.93 per day. In case of different states and Union territories, minimum wages vary from Rs 19.25 to Rs 165.78 per day, and for agricultural workers from Rs 19.25 to Rs 102 per day.
Under the Minimum Wages Act, 1948, the appropriate governments are required to revise the minimum wages in all scheduled employments under their respective jurisdiction at an interval not exceeding five years.
In order to protect minimum wages against inflation, the concept of linking it to the rise in the consumer price index (CPI) was recommended at the labour ministers conference in 1988. Since then, the concept of variable dearness allowance (VDA) linked to the CPI has been floated. The VDA is revised twice in a year in April and October.