Karnataka

Manivannan transferred out of labour Department

Disagreement in distribution of dry ration kits to workers allegedly the reason

In a late evening development on Monday, the State government transferred P. Manivannan, Principal Secretary to Department of Labour and Department of Information and Publicity, over apparent disagreement in distribution of dry ration kits to construction workers.

He has been replaced by M. Maheshwar Rao, currently Principal Secretary of Commerce and Industries department (MSME and Mines). Mr. Rao will hold concurrent charge, while Mr. Manivannan has not been given any posting.

Sources said the Labour Department has distributed over 10,000 dry ration kits so far to construction workers, the money for which came from the Karnataka Construction Workers Welfare Board. The department has been resisting moves from Bengaluru legislators, who wanted to have a say in the distribution, sources said. “The department has been insisting on transparency in ration distribution that was going to legislators,” sources aware of the developments said, adding that legislators had been asked to give the list of beneficiaries.

In its earlier attempt, while distributing one lakh dry ration hampers comprising 13 items, the Labour Department was accused of mismanagement, and under pressure from BJP legislators, the State government handed over the distribution responsibility to the BBMP. Later, the Opposition attacked the government when photographs of legislators appeared on the hampers.

Employers' letter

It may be mentioned here that as Labour Secretary, he had ruffled feathers of industries after issuing an order not to retrench workers and pay full wages for the lockdown period. Early this month, he has directed the Department to issue notices to industries defaulting on payment of wages and had urged workers to register complaint on the helpline. The State Government had asked him to withdraw both orders. The Karnataka Employers Association wrote to Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa, complaining about the "high handedness" and expressed displeasure.

The association had asked the Government to replace him from the leadership role of the department.

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Printable version | Jul 12, 2020 12:17:31 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/manivannan-transferred-out-of-labour-department/article31560449.ece

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