India's labour reforms will foster gender parity

The Narendra Modi government will aggressively work towards early implementation and notification of the pending labour codes to enhance income levels and livelihoods of workers engaged in the unorganised sector. But more importantly, the thrust of the labour laws is also to promote gender diversity in the workforce.
Being the fifth largest economy, India still faces gender disparity in the working force due to archaic labour laws. (File photo)
Being the fifth largest economy, India still faces gender disparity in the working force due to archaic labour laws. (File photo)IANS

By: Mahua Venkatesh

The Narendra Modi government will aggressively work towards early implementation and notification of the pending labour codes to enhance income levels and livelihoods of workers engaged in the unorganised sector. But more importantly, the thrust of the labour laws is also to promote gender diversity in the workforce.

The new set of labour laws essentially aims at providing equal opportunities to women workers while ensuring wage parity with their male counterparts.

Though the new labour codes are aimed at bringing in uniformity in rules throughout the country, states willing to implement the labour codes may be given a go-ahead, since the subject comes under the Concurrent List - implying both state governments and the Centre have equal powers to formulate laws.

The four labour codes that encompass wages, industrial relations, social security, occupational safety, health, and working Conditions will replace and consolidate 29 central laws. Essentially, the Labour Codes - four of them - introduced in 2019 aim to consolidate the multiple laws currently existing. States will now have to frame their own rules about the four codes.

The government is keen to implement all four labour codes in one go for a seamless transit to the new legal framework in the country, earlier PTI reported "That would be ideal but why should states which are ready and willing to go ahead with the labour codes suffer due to others?" a person familiar with the development said.

India, striving to touch the $5trillion economy mark in the next few years, must have a set of modern, well-structured, and transparent labour laws.

At present, the multiplicity of rules governing states is a problem for companies both Indian as well as multinational.

Gopal Krishna Agarwal, national spokesperson of the BJP said that new labour laws are critical to pushing the manufacturing sector.

"The new set of rules will boost income levels and provide job and social security to a large number of people in the country. Investments will also be boosted once the new rules are in place," Agarwal said, adding that the Modi government's focus is now on economic revival.

Several states including Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, and Gujarat among others came forth in relaxing labour laws just after the Covid pandemic lockdown in 2020 which dealt a blow to economic activities. However, they were temporary. (KB/IANS)

(The content is being carried under an arrangement with indianarrative.com)

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