Government to ensure fair wages to workers: Dattatreya

Not just minimum wages...I want fare wages," the Labour Minister said in Rajya Sabha during Question Hour.

March 04, 2015 02:54 pm | Updated 02:54 pm IST - New Delhi

Labour and Employment Minister Bandaru Dattatreya on Wednesday said the government intends to ensure “fare wages” for the labourers.

“Not just minimum wages...I want fare wages,” Mr. Dattatreya said in Rajya Sabha during Question Hour.

The Minister was replying to a question on whether the government would pay heed to the demand of major central trade unions and increase minimum wages to Rs 15,000 per month from existing Rs 10,000 a month now.

Mr. Dattatreya, however, did not give any timeline.

Seeking the hike in minimum wages, the trade unions had submitted a joint memorandum to the Finance Minister in June last year and had met the Labour Minister on the issue.

Under the provisions of the Minimum Wages Act, 1948, both central and state governments fix and revise the minimum wages of workers employed in scheduled employments under their respective jurisdictions.

“Since fixation of wages depends on factors like local conditions, cost of living, capacity to pay, skills available, occupations or employments, there are differences in the rates of minimum wages fixed by appropriate government,” he said.

Replying to a supplementary, Mr. Dattatreya said government has no proposal at present to conduct a detailed survey to find out actual number of labourers in the organised sector.

According to a survey conducted by the National Sample Survey Organisation, total number of workers in the country was around 47 crore.

“Out of this, about eight crore were in the organised sector and the balance 39 crore in the unorganised sector,” he said, adding that sector-wise data was not available.

Asked whether the government was considering bringing anganwadi workers under the social security purview, he answered in the affirmative.

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