Despite stiff opposition from trade unions, labour ministry has set a firm deadline of six months in order to bring legislative and procedural changes in the old labour laws. The deadlines were communicated to the Prime Minister's Office at a recent meeting. At least half a dozen Bills will go to the Cabinet for approval before winter session of Parliament. In case of delay prime Minister Office (PMO) is expected to do the follow up for the same.
As per the strategy laid out by the ministry, the first few proposals that are lined up for Cabinet's approval, starting from this month, include the Small Factories Bill, as well as amendments to the Minimum Wages Bill, Bonus Act, EPF & MP Act and the ESIC Act.
Besides, in order to follow the path of consolidating 44 labour laws into four codes so as to simplify labour laws ,the ministry also plans to move the labour code on wages to the Cabinet next month, while the labour code on industrial relations in November and social security in February. Further the Ministry also plans to push as many amendments as possible in the winter session and continue working on other sets of laws required to be amended so that the series of amendments are in the process.
For the first time the labour ministry has laid out a short term and a well defined path for itself for re-examine all the important labour laws. Moreover, this move is likely to cheer up corporate that are having an eye on the developments in the sector before they make investments. However, the push to the initiatives of the labour ministry from all corners of the government is likely to further disturb central trade Unions, which had already observed a one-day nationwide strike earlier opposing the unilateral and pro-corporate.