Delhi: Government to expedite registration drive of construction workers, to hold camps across labour chowks
22 February 2021: Delhi government has devised a month-long action plan to register construction workers under the Construction Workers’ Welfare Board. It will also hold awareness campaigns across 263 labour chowks informing construction workers of the various labour welfare schemes of the government. Currently only 2 lakh out of 10 lakh construction labourers in the state are registered with the welfare board.
ESIC relaxes conditions for availing sickness benefit for women availing maternity benefit, plans to expand health services
22 February 2021: The Employees’ State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) has relaxed the conditions for insured women availing maternity benefit to also avail sickness benefit by reducing the mandatory contributory conditions from a minimum of 78 days to not less than half the number of days available for working in such shorter contribution period. Most women were not eligible to avail sickness benefit in the corresponding benefit period after availing maternity benefit after the duration of maternity benefit was increased from 12 to 26 weeks.
Karnataka: Government amends Shops and Commercial Establishments Act, increases annual paid leaves for workers
03 February 2021: Legislative Assembly passed the Karnataka Shops and Commercial Establishments (Second Amendment) Bill increasing the number of annual paid leaves from 30 to 45 days. Earlier, Karnata government had amended the act to allow women to work night shifts and shops & establishments employing more than 10 workers to function round-the-clock in a bid to create new job opportunities.
Election Commission of India extends postal ballot voting facility to employees of Indian Railways
03 February 2021: The Election Commission of India (ECI) has included employees of Indian Railways under the category of absentee voters on essential services and thereby extended the postal ballot voting facility to Railway workers for the first time. Accordingly, the Ministry of Law and Justice also amended the Conduct of Election Rules, 1961. The ECI was responding to a representation by a railway official seeking postal ballots for onboard railway staff stating that all onboard staff are unable to get leave on voting day because of the nature of their jobs.
Government to tax Provident Fund contributions over 2.5 lakh per annum
01 February 2021: In Budget 2021-22, the government proposed that from the next financial year, individuals contributing more than Rs. 2.5 lakh annually in their Provident Funds will not get tax exemption on the interest earned. The move is aimed at rationalising tax exemption availed by high income employees. Previously, all interest earned on Provident Fund contributions was tax free.