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Union Cabinet passes Ordinance to facilitate Digital Transfer of Salaries by Employers across India

The proposed amendment would not make mandatory the payment of wages to the workers only through cheques or account transfers

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New Delhi, December 21, 2016: The union cabinet on Wednesday passed an ordinance to facilitate digital transfer of salaries by employers across the country. However, the cash payment system will continue, a senior official said.

“An additional way of payment has been introduced through this ordinance. The old system of cash would also remain,” the official said following a meeting of the cabinet.

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“This is being done to facilitate the employers from making payment of wages using the banking facilities in addition to the existing modes of payment of wages in current coin or currency notes,” he added.

The Labour Ministry in a statement, however, clarified that the proposed amendment would not make mandatory the payment of wages to the workers only through cheques or account transfers.

“The proposal of Ministry of Labour and Employment to bring an amendment to Section 6 of the Payment of Wages Act, 1936, is an additional facility of crediting the wages in the bank account of the employees or payment through cheque along with the existing provisions of payment in current coin or currency notes,” it said.

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Also, the appropriate government (Centre or state) will have to come up with the notification to specify the industries or other establishments where the employer shall pay wages through cheques or by crediting the wages in the employees’ bank account, it added.

The Ministry said that the proposed amendment would also ensure that “minimum wages are paid to the employees and their social security rights are protected”.

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“The employers can no longer under-quote the number of employees employed by them in their establishments to avoid becoming a subscriber to the EPFO or ESIC schemes,” it said.

The Ministry also pointed out that states like Andhra Pradesh/Telangana, Kerala, Uttarakhand, Punjab and Haryana have already come out with notifications to provide for payment through banking channels. (IANS)

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Aadhaar Helpline Mystery: French Security Expert Tweets of doing a Full Disclosure Tomorrow about Code of the Google SetUP Wizard App

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Google adds support for hashtags on Maps for Android devices. Wikimedia Commons

Google’s admission that it had in 2014 inadvertently coded the 112 distress number and the UIDAI helpline number into its setup wizard for Android devices triggered another controversy on Saturday as India’s telecom regulator had only recommended the use of 112 as an emergency number in April 2015.

After a large section of smartphone users in India saw a toll-free helpline number of UIDAI saved in their phone-books by default, Google issued a statement, saying its “internal review revealed that in 2014, the then UIDAI helpline number and the 112 distress helpline number were inadvertently coded into the SetUp wizard of the Android release given to OEMs for use in India and has remained there since”.

Aadhaar Helpline Number Mystery: French security expert tweets of doing a full disclosure tomorrow about Code of the Google SetUP Wizard App, Image: Wikimedia Commons.

However, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) recommended only in April 2015 that the number 112 be adopted as the single emergency number for the country.

According to Google, “since the numbers get listed on a user’s contact list, these get  transferred accordingly to the contacts on any new device”.

Google was yet to comment on the new development.

Meanwhile, French security expert that goes by the name of Elliot Alderson and has been at the core of the entire Aadhaar controversy, tweeted on Saturday: “I just found something interesting. I will probably do full disclosure tomorrow”.

“I’m digging into the code of the @Google SetupWizard app and I found that”.

“As far as I can see this object is not used in the current code, so there is no implications. This is just a poor coding practice in term of security,” he further tweeted.

On Friday, both the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) as well as the telecom operators washed their hand of the issue.

While the telecom industry denied any role in the strange incident, the UIDAI said that he strange incident, the UIDAI said that some vested interests were trying to create “unwarranted confusion” in the public and clarified that it had not asked any manufacturer or telecom service provider to provide any such facility.

Twitter was abuzz with the new development after a huge uproar due to Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) Chairman R.S. Sharma’s open Aadhaar challenge to critics and hackers.

Ethical hackers exposed at least 14 personal details of the TRAI Chairman, including mobile numbers, home address, date of birth, PAN number and voter ID among others. (IANS)

Also Read: Why India Is Still Nowhere Near Securing Its Citizens’ Data?