WB govt thinking of amendment to Contract Labour Act



Kolkata: West Bengal Labour Minister Purnendu Basu on Wednesday made a case for amending the Contract Labour Act to ensure more job security and better wages.

"We are thinking there should be an amendment to the Contract Labour Act, 1970. We will work on it send our proposal to the Centre soon," Basu told reporters on the sidelines of a conference of the Bengal National Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

He said with globalisation and economic liberalisation, contract labour has become one of the two major areas of concern.

"The challenge before the employer is to acknowledge and appreciate the contribution of contract workers in the growth of industry and to give them the place they deserve. Employers should understand the crucial role that they are playing," he said.

He said that another major area of concern was recognition of trade unions, as this was an important link in building harmonious industrial relations.

"Employers must realise that providing recognition to the truly representative trade union is in the best interest of not only the workers, but also the organisation.

Harmonious industrial relations cannot be achieved if the employers fail to recognize the trade union which actually represents the workers," he said.

Basu said that in the past one-and-a-half years, the state government has been able to bring down mandays lost due to work stoppage.

"In 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010, the average mandays lost was 76 lakhs, that came down to 60,000 in 2011 and 2012. And, in 2012 and 2013 it is 5200 only," he said.

He also said that there was a need to change the mindset on industrial relations and the state would hold counselling session for stakeholders to bring about this change.

PTI