A ministers’ panel, chaired by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, is likely to meet on September 15 to discuss the Labour Code on Wages and the Small Factories Bill.
It will be the panel’s first meeting after the nationwide general strike called by the trade unions on September 2, protesting against the “anti-worker” changes in labour laws and Centre’s “indifference” to their demands for better wages.
“The panel is expected to meet on September 15 on various labour issues, which will also include the Wage Code and the Small Factories Bill,” a source said.
The Wage Code seeks to empower Centre to fix a minimum wage applicable in all sectors across the entire country.
It will allow fixing a benchmark wage for workers which will have to be adhered to by the states. This provision will ensure a minimum wage to workers across the country.
The states will be free to prescribe higher wages.
The Small Factories (Facilitation and Regulation of Employment and Conditions of Services) Bill is significant as it aims to improve ease of doing business in India and seeks to create an ecosystem for encouraging small businesses.
It seeks to exempt small units with less than 40 workers from tedious compliance of 14 labour laws including Employees Provident Funds & Miscellaneous Provisions Act and Employees State Insurance (ESI) Act.