Showing posts with label Labour and Employment. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Labour and Employment. Show all posts

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

India’s Stand on ILO Conventions Briefed to the Parliamentary Consultative Committee of M/O Labour & Employment

The Consultative Committee members of the Ministry of Labour & Employment have urged the Government to ensure due patronage to the traditional skill while going for the ratification of Conventions adopted by the International Labour Organisation (IlO) on Labour issues, especially in the arena of Child Labour. The members have also called for expediting the cause of providing a minimum pension of Rs. 1000 per month to the EPF beneficiaries as well as to ensure proper registration of workers in the unorganized sectors particularly the construction workers.

The meeting of Consultative Committee of Labour & Employment Ministry which held yesterday evening was convened for providing in insight to the members of the various conventions of ILO as ratified by the Government of India on time to time. Speaking on the occasion, Union Labour & Employment Minister Shri Mallikarjun Kharge who chaired the meeting, said India, a Founding Member of the ILO, has been a permanent member of the ILO Governing Body since 1922. ILO has now expanded its membership to 185 nations. The first ILO Office in India started in 1928. The decades of productive partnership between the ILO and its constituents has mutual trust and respect as underlying principles and is grounded in building sustained institutional capacities and strengthening capacities of partners. It has a two-directional focus for socio-economic development: overall strategies and ground-level approaches.

The Minister said the approach of India with regard to International Labour Standards has always been positive. The ILO instruments have provided guidelines and useful framework for the evolution of legislative and administrative measures for the protection and advancement of the interest of labour. It has always been the practice in India that we ratify a Convention when we are fully satisfied that our laws and practices are in conformity with the relevant ILO Convention. The ILO has so far adopted 189 Conventions and 201 Recommendations. Out of 189 ILO Conventions, India has so far ratified 43 Conventions which includes 4 (four) core or fundamental human rights Conventions.

He said we have ratified 4 core conventions and 3 priority/governance conventions. The 4 core conventions ratified by us are Forced Labour Convention (No.29), Abolition of Forced Labour Convention (No.105), Equal Remuneration Convention (No.100) and Discrimination (Employment Occupation) Convention (No.111), and the 3 priority conventions ratified are Labour Inspection Convention (No.81), Employment Policy Convention (No.122) and Tripartite Consultations (International Labour Standards) (No.144). Even where for certain reasons where we may not be in a position to ratify a Convention, we have generally voted in favour of the Convention reserving its position as far as its future ratification is concerned.

The journey of ILO over the last more than nine decades has been eventful and full of important milestones. However, the primary function of ILO is standard setting and their application. Many of the ILO Conventions are outdated and need to be revised as identified by Cartier Working Party. Even the core conventions have failed to achieve universal ratification due to lack of flexibility. Our concern is that ILO should undertake in-depth analysis to put in place a standards strategy which encourages steps like progressive ratification of a Convention. The choice of topics for future standard setting should be widened according to the requirements of all ILO member states having diverse socio-economic conditions. In the years to come, ILO must maintain its leadership in the subjects related to labour since it has the unique advantage of tripartite structure, transparency and the ability to obtain inputs from real economy, Shri Kharge added.

Shri Kharge said the challenges being faced by the Member states on Ratification and promotion of fundamental and governance ILO Conventions are due to non-conformity with national laws and lack of technical assistance. He said India’s stand is that the process of ratification of these conventions should be a gradual one and adequate time should be given to the Member States for creating favourable conditions for ratification, taking into account the socio-economic realities of each Member state. The link-up of the four Governance Conventions to the Social Justice Declaration should be more of promotional in nature. We should adopt a more pragmatic and realistic approach for ratification and promotion of these conventions through creating awareness, building capacities of the constituents, advocacy, training and technical cooperation.

A power point presentation on the preparedness and attention paid by the Government at the ILO meetings was also presented during the meeting.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Indian Council of Overseas Employment- A think Tank on ‘International Migration

The Indian Council of Overseas Employment (ICOE) is a ‘not for profit’ society established by the Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs (MOIA) in 2008 to serve as a think tank on all matters relating to ‘International Migration’. The ICOE undertakes empirical, analytical and policy related research, implements pilot projects to document good practices and assists in capacity building of stakeholders at the sub-national level. The mandate of the Council is to devise and execute medium to long term strategies to enable Indian emigrant workers and professionals to move up the value chain and to position India as a preferred source of qualified, skilled and trained human resources across a wide gamut of sectors.
Vision: Lead 'evidence based' work on international migration to support informed policy making and enable strategic interventions for a coherent and harmonised response to the transnational movement of people.
Mission: Partner with individuals, institutions and governments to drive empirical, analytical and policy related research; enhance capacities and pilot good practices in international migration and its governance.
Governance Structure: The Council has a two- tier body comprising of a Governing Body and an Executive Directorate. The Governing Body provides the broad policy framework for the programmes and activities of the Council. The Governing Body is headed by Secretary, MOIA who is the Chairman while the other Members include the Secretaries or their representatives from the Department of Economic Affairs, the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Labour and Employment; Secretaries of three State Governments by rotation and four external nominees. The Chief Executive Officer, ICOE functions as Member Secretary of the Council and looks after the functions of the Council and its operations, assisted by a small team.
Key Partnerships: ICOE is building strong research partnerships with institutions of international repute as well as multilateral organisations. Some of the partner institutions include:
•   European University Institute (EUI), Florence, Italy
•   International Organization for Migration (IOM), India
•   Migration Policy Institute (MPI), Washington, USA
•   Hellenic Migration Policy Institute, Athens, Greece
•   V. V. Giri National Labour Institute, India
•   UN Women, India
ICOE also works closely with the following institutions which have partnered with MOIA for various research initiatives on international migration:
•   Center for Development Studies, Trivandrum, India
•   Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi, India
•   Center for the Advanced Study of India (CASI), University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
•   International Migration Institute (IMI), University of Oxford, UK
•   University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg
Initiatives of ICOE
  1. Skill Development Initiative for Potential Migrants from the North-Eastern States of India is a pilot project currently underway in eight North-Eastern states in partnership with International Organization for Migration (IOM). The objective of the project is to provide job readiness and augment employability of the potential overseas migrants, in the international labour market, especially high demand sectors of hospitality & healthcare. The project will develop standards andan internationally recognized framework for skills up-gradation, assessment, accreditation & certification. The project will be scaled up at national level.
  2. Developing a Knowledgebase for Policymaking on India–EU Migration project is being implemented in partnership with EUI, Florence, with an objective to consolidate a constructive dialogue between the EU and India on migration covering all migration-related aspects. The project is co-financed by European Commission (EC).The objective of the project is to assemble high-level Indian-EU expertise in major disciplines that deal with migration (demography, economics, law, sociology and politics) with a view to building up migration studies in India and to provide the Government of India as well as the European Union, its Member States, the state governments, academia and civil society, with evidence-based policy-oriented research, capacity building, and outreach programmes at sub-national level.
  3. Study on Health of Migrant Workers from India in the Gulf is being undertaken by ICOE in collaboration with WHO and IOM in three major Indian states of origin (Kerala, Andhra, Pradesh, Punjab), and in the UAE, Oman and Bahrain. The scope of the study is to understand the etiology of the high incidence of hypertension, gestational diabetes and depression amongst Indian workers, relative to their counterparts in India as well as in comparison with other ethnic groups.
  4. Empowerment of Women Migrant Workers in the Gulf is a pilot project instituted by ICOE in collaboration with UN Women for empowering women migrant workers in the Gulf. The project will be implemented over a period of two years in select districts of two major states of origin for women migrants workers; Andhra Pradesh &Kerala. The project aims to institutionalize ‘good practices’ in the entire cycle of migration from pre-departure to return and resettlement through a series of awareness and capacity building programmes covering all stakeholders in the migration process.
  5. Labour Market Assessment (LMA) of six European countrieswas conducted by ICOE in partnership with IOM to present a market overview and sectoral opportunities in the labor markets in respective countries. The LMA also provided broad-based as well as short-term recommendations for potential improvement on the supply side of labour mobility in India. The second phase of Labour Market Assessment will be carried out in select EU Member States, Australia and Canada.
  6. Research Project on the Movement of Indian Capital, Goods and Labour in Africa in partnership with The Centre for Indian Studies in Africa (CISA) - Wits University to create the basis for a realistic assessment of Indian capital and labour in Africa; and inform policy and practice in India. The project will build statistical &data analysis systems and establish institutional links with think-tanks in Africa to support evidence based research. The research outputs will inform India’s engagement with matters of investments and management of overseas Indian labour with particular reference to skills needed. It will also provide recommendations for action to improve labour flows and to engage with the issue of entrepreneurial capital as opposed to direct investments.
  7. Second Employer’s Conference will be organizedin 2012 with an objective to showcase India as a preferred country of origin for skilled and trained human resource. The conference will be hosted by Haryana Overseas Placement Assistance Society (HOPAS) and is expected to be attended by recruiters from EU member states, Gulf, South-East Asia and Australia.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Manpower Employment Outlook Survey India (Q3/2011)

The Manpower Employment Outlook Survey for the third quarter of 2011 was conducted by interviewing a representative sample of 4,555 employers in India. Indian employers report bullish hiring plans for third quarter of 2011, with 49 per cent of employers expecting to increase headcount, 2 per cent predicting a decrease and 31 per cent anticipating no change. The Net Employment Outlook stands at +47 per cent.
After the data is adjusted to allow for seasonal variation, the Outlook stands at +46 per cent. The hiring prospects improved by 5 percentage points on year-over-year basis.
Employers in all four regions anticipate an increase in staffing levels during the third quarter of 2011. In the East, employers report the most optimistic Net Employment Outlook of +49 per cent, while in the North, the Outlook stands at a bullish +48 per cent. Employers in the West and the South report dynamic Outlooks of +45 per cent and +43 per cent, respectively.
Employers in all the seven industry sectors forecast an increase in staffing levels during the third quarter of 2011. The most optimistic hiring intentions are reported in the Wholesale & Retail Trade sector, with a Net Employment Outlook standing at +51 per cent. Services sector employers report bullish hiring plans, with an Outlook of +48 per cent, and dynamic hiring prospects are evident in the Finance, Insurance & Real Estate sector and the Mining & Construction sector, with Outlooks of +47 per cent and +46 per cent, respectively. The Manufacturing sector Outlook stands at +45 per cent.

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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Labour Force in the Country

Reliable estimates of employment and unemployment are obtained through quinquennial labour force surveys conducted by National Sample Survey Office.  Last   such survey was conducted during 2009-10.  As per most recent survey, details of estimated labour force on usual status basis for male and female residing in rural and urban areas in the country during 2009-10 are given below :
                                                   (in million)

                9.50  million persons among the total estimated labour force of 474.98 million during 2009-10 were unemployed.
                 Latest data available in the quinquennial labour force survey conducted during 2004-05 by National Sample Survey Office revealed that percentage of working poor (those employed but unable to earn sufficient income from their work to rise above the official poverty line) was estimated at around 22 per cent in the country on usual status basis (based on mixed recall period) during 2004-05.
           Number of youth job seekers in the age group of 15-29, all of whom may not necessarily be unemployed, registered with employment exchanges in the country as on 31st December 2008 was 2.70 crore. Data relating to youth job seekers according to educational level are not maintained centrally.
                 Government of India is fully aware of the magnitude of unemployment problem prevailing in the country, particularly, among the youth and to tackle this problem, the Government has undertaken skill development in a big way. In order to achieve this objective, the coordinated Action Plan for Skill Development has set a target of 500 million skilled persons by the year 2022, and all concerned Ministries and Departments have been mandated to undertake skill development programmes accordingly. All the Government Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) are being modernized. New Govt. and Private ITIs are set up to augment training capacity. A new scheme, titled Skill Development Initiative has been started to train one million persons in five years and then one million every year in short term modular employable skills. In addition, Government has also been implementing various employment generation programmes and some of the important ones are: Swarnajayanti Shahari Rojgar Yojna, Swarnajayanti Gram Swarojgar Yojna, Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act and Prime Minister’s Employment Generation Programme.

National Level Social Security Fund for Unorganised Workers

The National Social Security Fund for unorganized sector workers has been constituted.

The fund will support schemes for weavers, toddy tappers, rickshaw pullers, beedi workers etc.

The initial allocation of National Social Security Fund was Rs. 1,000/- crore in Budget 2010-11. In addition to this, in Budget Estimates for 2011-12, a provision of Rs. 500/- crore has been made for transfer to the National Social Security Fund. The number of workers to be covered under the scheme would depend on the target group to be covered and nature of social security schemes to be formulated.

Ministry of Finance is the custodian of the National Social Security Fund and the Ministry of Labour & Employment is the Nodal Ministry to administer the scheme.

This information was given by the Union Labour & Employment Minister Shri Mallikarjun Kharge in the Rajya Sabha today in Reply to a written question whether Government has cleared to set up a National level Social Security Fund for unorganized workers; the salient features of the benefits covered under the proposed scheme; the value of proposed fund, names of the segments of unorganized workers and the form of social security to be provided under the fund; the number of workers to be benefited under the scheme; who will be the custodian of the fund/or any board or committee that has been constituted to administer the fund; and the time by when proposed fund is to be constituted.

Bonded Labour in the Country

The Bonded Labour System has been abolished by law throughout the country with effect from 25th October, 1975 under the Bonded Labour System (Abolition) Ordinance which was replaced by the Bonded Labour System (Abolition) Act, 1976. As and when existence of bonded labour is detected, such persons are identified for rehabilitation. According to the reports received from the State Governments, the total number of bonded labourers identified and released is 2,89,327 as on 31.3.2011.

The responsibility for rehabilitating the freed bonded labourers lies with the respective State Governments. In order to assist the State Governments in the task of rehabilitation of identified and released bonded labourers, a Centrally Sponsored Plan Scheme for Rehabilitation of Bonded Labour is in operation since May, 1978. Under the scheme, rehabilitation assistance @ Rs. 20,000/- per bonded labour is provided which is equally shared by the Central and State Government.

In collaboration with the ILO, the Central Government and State Government of Tamil Nadu have launched a pilot project in the State for the purpose of reducing vulnerability to bondage through promotion of decent work. Attempt is now being made to replicate this approach in some other states of the country.

As a result of concerted efforts made by the Government through various anti-poverty programmes, awareness, sensitization etc., the incidence of bonded labour has witnessed a down ward trend over the years.

The Bonded Labour System (Abolition) Act, 1976, provides for punishment for enforcement of bonded labour. The States/Union Territories are mandated to implement the provisions of the Act.

Separate data is maintained in respect of child bonded labourers identified and released.

This information was given by the Union Labour & Employment Minister Shri Mallikarjun Kharge in the Rajya Sabha today in Reply to a written question whether Government is aware of several cases of bonded labour in the country; Government`s plan to make country a bonded labour free nation; the action taken against the perpetrators of this crime and whether there has also been cases where children have been engaged as bonded labour and their details.