Special Correspondent

Scheme to reward an employer once the employee is regularised

  • Rs.1,800 crore earmarked for the purpose
  • Centre to reimburse the employer's contribution to EPF, ESI for three years

    NEW DELHI: The Union budget has brought a smile on the faces of the physically challenged. The Finance Ministry proposed to support the creation of about 1 lakh jobs every year for such people with a salary limit of Rs. 25,000 a month.

    This is expected to cost the Government Rs.150 crore per annum.

    Finance Minister P. Chidambaram, in his budget speech on Wednesday, said he had earmarked Rs. 1,800 crore for the purpose.

    Encourage employers

    To encourage employers in the organised sector to provide regular employment to the physically challenged, the Government proposed a scheme to reward an employer once the physically challenged person was regularised and enrolled under Employees Provident Fund (EPF) and Employees State Insurance (ESI) schemes.

    The Government would reimburse the employer's contribution to the EPF and ESI for the first three years.

    The Union Government has also hiked the allocation to the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) to Rs. 12,000 crore (including the North East Region component) which has been extended to 330 districts.

    In addition, the budget provides Rs. 2,800 crore for Sampoorna Grameen Rozgar Yojana (SGRY) for rural employment in the districts not covered by NREGS.

    Self-employment

    The Swarnjayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojana, intended to promote self-employment among the rural poor through Self Help Groups, will be strengthened by increasing the allocation from Rs. 1,200 crore in the current year to Rs.1,800 crore the next year. The allocation for Swarnjayanti Shahari Rozgar Yojana has also been enhanced from Rs. 250 crore in 2006-07 to Rs. 344 crore the next year.