Centre rejects proposal to relax labour laws

Responding to a calling of attention motion in the Rajya Sabha on the situation arising out of retrenchment and job losses, Labour Minister Mallikarjun Kharge said state governments had been advised to ensure industrial peace and implement labour laws so that the interest of the workmen could be protected. Implementing these laws is good for employers and employees, he said while dismissing a proposal by industrialist and independent member Rahul Bajaj on relaxing the labour laws.

The issue was raised by CPI member D Raja who asked the government to create new jobs and strengthen the social security network for the workers.

Kharge said the Indian economy felt the impact of the slowdown since the middle of 2008 and his ministry was closely monitoring the situation.

Three recent fiscal stimulus packages by the government and monetary easing measures by the RBI had helped the economy to retain the growth trajectory, though at a moderate level compared with previous years.  Addressing the concerns raised by the Left including CITU leader and CPM member Mohammed Amin on retrenchment and closure of industries, Kharge said there were restrictions on lay-offs under the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947.

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