RS passes 3 key labour reform bills

(File photo)

New Delhi (NVI): The Rajya Sabha today passed three key labour bills that will bring about much needed labour reforms, making it easier for employers to hire and fire workers without government permission.

The bills were passed in the Rajya Sabha amidst boycott by opposition parties on farm bills and suspension of eight MPs continued.

The code on occupational safety, health and working conditions, the industrial relations code and the social security code were already passed by the Lok Sabha yesterday. These will now be sent to the President for his assent.

Speaking on discussion of the bills, Labour Minister Santosh Gangwar said, “The purpose of labour reforms is to provide a transparent system to suit the changed business environment.”

The minister also told Rajya Sabha that as many as 16 states have already increased the threshold for closure, lay off and reduction in firms with up to 300 workers without government permission.

He noted that it is not good for employment generation to keep the threshold low at 100 because it discourages employers to recruit more workers than this and they deliberately keep their workers’ strength below it.

The minister further said these bills would safeguard the interest of workers and provide universal social security to workers by expanding the ambit of Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation and Employees’ State Corporation of India.