All stories by Somesh Jha
Banks to resume wage revision talks with TU leaders on July 22Rediff.com21 Jul 2020
The current wage revision for PSBs, as well as some private lenders, is due from November 2017 for five years - up to October 2022.
PNB ready to disburse Rs 16,000 crore in loansRediff.com6 Jul 2020
'We have already sanctioned loans worth over Rs 3,000 crore to around 120,000 customers.'
Finally some good news for 32 mn construction workersRediff.com6 Jul 2020
Apart from Bihar, Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand, where none of the estimated 6.7 million construction workers got cash transfer benefits, the coverage of the construction workers was the lowest in Delhi, where only about 5 per cent of the estimated workers received cash under the PMGKY, followed by Kerala and Uttar Pradesh (22 per cent), among major states. In India, construction workers belong to the unorganised sector but account for the highest share of non-farm jobs after manufacturing.
How corrupt are India's contract labour laws?Rediff.com24 Jun 2020
Retrenched Raymond staff stare at long battleRediff.com19 Jun 2020
The company stated that it was taking steps for cost rationalisation across all businesses to maintain liquidity and due to a prolonged slowdown it had to take a few tough measures.
Fallout of PNB buying Audis for top bossesRediff.com18 Jun 2020
The Centre has advised banks to make a 20 per cent reduction in expenditure related to non-core business activities, along with deferring "avoidable expenditure" on "purchase of staff cars", "refurbishment of guest houses" and on the interior decoration of administrative and back offices.
No question of removing labour laws'Rediff.com11 Jun 2020
'A proposal to do away with labour laws is not feasible.' 'That's why we wanted to have a dialogue with the states.'
Govt unlikely to tweak GST rates on non-essential itemsRediff.com1 Jun 2020
Retaining the GST rate assumes importance since states are under pressure to increase their revenues, hit hard by lockdown. Also, the Centre has not fully compensated states for their revenue losses on account of GST for 2019-20.
ILO writes to Modi, voices concerns over labour law changesRediff.com26 May 2020
ILO acts upon a plea by 10 central trade unions objecting to the ordinances proposed to temporarily scrap labour laws in Uttar Pradesh and Gujarat, along with executive orders issued by at least 10 states to increase the daily working limit to 12 hours from eight hours, along with other labour law changes.
Why the recent rejig in labour laws by states won't help muchRediff.com25 May 2020
Labour law changes for three years may not be enough as it takes a couple of years for factories to build and operations at a proper scale start only in the third or fourth year.
Govt's piece-meal approach not enough to help migrantsRediff.com15 May 2020
There was no announcement from the government on guaranteeing a minimum basic income, which is the need of the hour. The announcements on portability of ration cards and affordable rental housing to workers are for the long and medium terms. Migrant workers need immediate relief.
Punjab 1st state to withdraw hike in minimum wagesRediff.com12 May 2020
The Karnataka government is also expected to follow suit and withdraw its decision to raise the variable DA.
Licence norms for contract workers relaxed in MPRediff.com11 May 2020
11 categories of industries will be exempt from the Madhya Pradesh Industrial Relations (MPIR) Act of 1961. This includes textile, leather, cement, iron and steel, electrical goods, sugar, electricity, public motor transport, engineering including manufacture of motor vehicles, among others.
'This will lead to a law of the jungle'Rediff.com11 May 2020
'Just as coronavirus has come to us from China, this disease is also coming from that country.' 'India is a strong democracy and you cannot compromise on labour laws in this manner.' 'These changes will be challenged in court.'
Assam changes labour laws, but differs from BJP modelRediff.com10 May 2020
Unlike the other Bharatiya Janata Party-led governments, Assam has not proposed doing away with most labour laws for a certain number of years. Instead it has proposed introducing fixed-term employment to help both workers and industries, and seeks to take more firms out of the ambit of laws governing factories and contract workers.
Employers may be allowed to pay PF in instalmentsRediff.com5 May 2020
Apart from this, employers may be allowed to deduct EPF contributions only on the basic pay of up to Rs 15,000, even if the employees' basic pay is above this ceiling. While on one hand this will allow companies to lower their wage bills, employees can also get a higher salary in hand.
Govt portal for stranded migrant workers soonRediff.com27 Apr 2020
The portal, which has been tentatively named by the labour and employment ministry as the National Portal for COVID-19 Affected Unorganised Migrant Workers, will gather the details of all the unorganised sector workers who are stranded in relief camps, residential or industrial clusters.
Don't pay workers wages during calamities, says House panelRediff.com25 Apr 2020
Parliamentary standing committee on labour, led by Biju Janata Dal MP Bhartruhari Mahtab, has said in its report that it is unjustifiable for owners to pay workers' wages during natural calamities.
Restarting work: Industry staring at higher operations costRediff.com16 Apr 2020
Ensuring health insurance for all workers would be major challenge for the industry that is already grappling with cash crunch, and the government should have borne the cost.
Work can wait, family can't, say stranded migrantsRediff.com16 Apr 2020
Daily wagers are running out of resources, including ration and cash, and the state governments might not be able to sustain their needs for a longer period of time, given the lockdown has already been extended until May 3.
'COVID-19 crisis led to Rs 4,000 crore fresh NPAs'Rediff.com13 Apr 2020
'So far, loans outstanding of around Rs 4 trillion, out of the total Rs 7.5 trillion, have been postponed.'
60 officers to address worker issues during shutdownRediff.com12 Apr 2020
The labour ministry has made public a list of 60 officers -- essentially labour commissioners in 20 regions across the country -- along with their e-mail address and contact numbers. They will deal with distress calls from workers who are working under the 'central sphere'.
Why India may defeat coronavirusRediff.com12 Apr 2020
'What is hindering us is the fear for the disease.' 'For those below the age of 55 years, it's a mild disease.' 'So take care of yourself, your family and your parents.'
Govt begins mapping migrant workers to work out relief packageRediff.com10 Apr 2020
The Union home ministry and the labour ministry have asked state governments to coordinate with the chief labour commissioner's (CLC's) office to give a comprehensive data of all the migrant workers by April 11.
Revealed: Politics behind the long walk homeRediff.com31 Mar 2020
The Centre and state governments bonded and then fell apart during the longest lockdown walk.
Why migrant labourers have little choice but to head homeRediff.com26 Mar 2020
Around 81 per cent of the workers constitute the unorganised sector - devoid of any social security cover and outside the purview of a complex set of labour laws.
Bonanza for around 30 mn industrial workersRediff.com11 Mar 2020
The Seventh Pay Commission had decided to choose the CPI-IW as the index for adjusting inflation for central government employees.
RBI to rejig financial year in line with government'sRediff.com16 Feb 2020
Taking advantage of the RBI's different accounting year, the Centre had started demanding an interim dividend till the time the latter's final balance sheet is prepared (usually in August). To address this anomaly, an expert committee led by former RBI governor Bimal Jalan had recommended aligning the RBI's financial year with that of the government.
Why EPFO blocked accounts of 1 mn employeesRediff.com6 Feb 2020
The government has found about 900,000 beneficiaries of its flagship job formalisation scheme, the PMRPY, were ineligible in the first place as they were part of the formal economy even before the inception of the scheme. The EPFO has also recovered Rs 222 crore so far from the employers concerned.
Will bank customers pay for higher depositors' insurance?Rediff.com3 Feb 2020
'The banks cannot pass on the hike in premiums to its customers, according to the norms. The premium won't go up substantially in any case and may be hiked to 12-13 paise (per deposit of Rs 100 a year),' Finance Secretary Rajiv Kumar said.
Govt wants Rs 10,000 cr interim dividend from RBI to bridge fiscal gapRediff.com31 Jan 2020
This demand comes at a time when the government is falling short of its revenue targets due to dwindling tax and low disinvestment receipts. It could account for the dividend in the upcoming Union Budget on February 1. RBI is, however, yet to take a final call on the government's demand and might decide on this at its central board meeting scheduled for February 15 in New Delhi.
RBI plans to put weak private lenders under the hammerRediff.com16 Jan 2020
The banking regulator is seeking an early exit mechanism for private banks under Prompt Corrective Action.
JNU fallout: Professor quits statistics panelRediff.com7 Jan 2020
C P Chandrasekhar, who has served on key statistical panels in the past both as a chairman and member, said he was present in the campus when the ruckus broke out on Sunday and found the incident "disturbing" and "unprecedented", and that it further undermined the faith in the system. Somesh Jha reports.
FinMin counters RBI, says stress in banking sector decliningRediff.com29 Dec 2019
The net NPA ratio declined to 3.7 per cent in September 2019 from just below 4 per cent in March 2019, reflecting increased provisioning.
CBI told to use director identification number in notices to bankersRediff.com29 Dec 2019
This, said Sitharaman, would remove the possibility of unauthorised communication "and consequent harassment", which was a cause of concern for bankers.
Gig economy workers may now get insurance cover under ESIC schemeRediff.com5 Dec 2019
Gig workers are usually spoken of in the context of the sharing economy, like Uber, Ola drivers, delivery persons for Zomato and Swiggy and so on. This is the first time such workers will be covered under India's social security law.
Govt releases 5 survey reports but holds back study it junkedRediff.com25 Nov 2019
The government's decision to release the reports comes two days after over 200 scholars from across the globe issued a statement demanding release of all withheld reports produced by the NSO, including the household consumer expenditure survey that was junked.
Consumer spend falls for the first time in over 40 yearsRediff.com22 Nov 2019
Experts said a dip in consumption expenditure indicated an increasing prevalence of poverty in the country.
This Bill will decide how India Inc hires and firesRediff.com21 Nov 2019
Sitharaman said the Bill has proposed giving a legal framework for fixed-term employment through which contract workers serving a fixed-tenure will get equal statutory social security benefits as regular workers in the same unit.
Govt scraps consumer expenditure survey over 'data quality'Rediff.com16 Nov 2019
The findings of the report showed consumer spending falling for the first time in over four decades in 2017-18. The government has, however, termed it a "draft" report, reports Somesh Jha.