Rajasthan CM Raje makes strong pitch for labour reform

04 July 2014

At a time when labour law reform is the buzz, Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje on Thursday called on union cabinet minister Narendra Singh Tomar, who holds the labour as well as the steel and mining portfolios, with detailed reform proposals.

Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara RajeIn her first meeting with the Tomar in New Delhi, Raje proposed a number of amendments related to the Factories Act, 1948; Contract Labour Act, 1970; Industrial Disputes Act, 1947; and Apprenticeship Act, 1961. These laws fall under the concurrent list.

''The minister has received the proposals and will consider them after reviewing them in detail,'' said a senior ministry official.

Raje said she told to the union minister that developing skills is the key issue in her state. ''Skill development in the labour force is the main issue for us right now,'' she told newspersons after the meeting.

She said labour reform was only one aspect of the comprehensive discussion held with the union minister. ''We discussed various issues, including skill development, steel, and labour. We are looking forward to more such talks,'' Raje said.

She termed this as a preliminary discussion and added that she has invited Tomar to visit Rajasthan to talk in detail about the issues.

To attract investments and help the sector get skilled workers, the Rajasthan government recently proposed strong labour reforms. Some of the proposals include the state not requiring the centre's permission to retrench up to 300 employees, compared with 100 at present; and applicability of the Contract Labour Act to companies with more than 50 workers, against the current 20.

These proposed amendments will be tabled in the Rajasthan assembly in two weeks and subsequently require the President's assent.

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