The Ministry of Labour and Employment is likely to give a shape to the National Employment Policy (NEP) by December this year following the implementation of four labour codes and completion of four major surveys, including one one migrant workers.
The NEP will draw a broad road map for improving job opportunities in the country, mainly by various initiatives like skill development, bringing investment in employment intensive segments and other policy interventions. Last year, Parliament passed three labour codes on Industrial Relations, Social Security and Occupational Health Safety & Working Conditions (OSH).
The Code on Wages was approved by Parliament last year and its rules have been firmed up. But the implementation of the rules for Code on Wages was held back because the government wanted to implement all four labour codes in one go. These four codes are likely to be implemented from April 1 this year.
The implementation of these four labour codes would provide a conducive legal framework for universalisation of social security and other safeguards for the entire workforce of over 50 crore in the country. But for job creation, a broad NEP would be required to exploit the potential of each segment of different sectors of the economy. This would require up-to-date data on employment across the sectors in the country. This gap would be bridged by the four employment surveys to be conducted by the Labour Bureau, a wing of the ministry.
Talking to PTI, Director General, Labour Bureau, D S Negi told PTI that the bureau has begun spadework on the four surveys and field work would begin by March and the results would be out by October-end this year only. He said the NEP would take a shape based on the data inputs of these four surveys by December this year only. Thereafter, the NEP would be sent for the approval of the Union Cabinet.
The document is expected to aid employment generation in the country to a great extent, especially when the government is grappling with the issue of job loss especially due to the pandemic.
Earlier last month, Labour Minister Santosh Gangwar had also said that the four all India surveys on migrant workers, domestic workers, employment generated by professionals and transport sector which will be launched by early March, 2020 and the results of these will be available by October 2021.
The minister had opined that for any evidence-based policy making for these workers, ‘authentic data’ on employment in organised and unorganised sector enterprises is highly called for.
The minister had also informed that the bureau will soon launch an ‘All India Quarterly Survey’ on Employment of Enterprises’ that will provide comprehensive data on the employment numbers in both the organized and unorganized sectors to address these data needs.