In keeping with its focus to enhance social security of unorganised workers, the Centre will splice the ongoing schemes for them with the provisions of the Social Security Code when it is formally implemented.
The mandarins in the Union labour ministry, and the law departments in the states/UTs are seized of the matter. The ministry is in touch with the states and UTs on ways to conjoin the measures already in vogue with the provisions of the Social Security Code.
Union Labour Minister Bhupender Yadav, who has been tasked by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to give effect to reformative measures in labour market, has had several rounds of meetings with trade union leaders and other stakeholders in the matter.
The implementation of the four labour codes, including on social security, which were passed by Parliament, is in the pipeline. The states/UTs, and the Union government are in the final stages of framing the mandatory rules and bylaws under them.
Labour is a concurrent subject in the Constitution. Hence, the Centre and the states have to be on the same page for synergy and effective implementation of the laws.
However, the Centre is already implementing a slew of social security initiatives having variegated nomenclature, apparently in accordance with the vision of the prime minister.
Sources say these initiatives would segue into the final holistic framework when the codes, especially on social security, would formally be rolled out.
The provisions and objectives of the Social Security Code encompass the measures. The proposed rules and bylaws on the anvil will eventually give more heft to social security packages for the unorganised workers.
The social security schemes being implemented, though in absentia of the code’s formal implementation, include Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maandhan (PM-SYM) pension scheme, which provides a monthly minimum assured pension of Rs 3,000 after attaining the age of 60 years.
The unorganised workers in the age group of 18-40 years are eligible to join the PM-SYM scheme.
The Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bams Yojana (PMJJBY) under implantation is available to the people in the age group of 18-50 years having a bank/post office account who give their consent to join/enable auto-debit.
Risk coverage under this scheme is for Rs 2 lakh in case of death of the insured, due to any reason, at an annual premium of Rs 436 which is to be auto-debited from the subscriber’s bank/post office account.
The Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana (PMSBY) is also available to the people in the age group of 18-70 years with a bank/post account who give their consent to join/enable auto-debit.
The health and maternity benefits are addressed through Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (AB-PMJAY).
A few days ago, Bhupender Yadav said more than 28 crore unorganised workers had registered themselves on the ministry’s e-Shram portal, which was launched in August last year.
According to the labour ministry’s official estimate, unorganised workers account for 38 crore of the total of 47 crore workforce.
The portal’s objective is to create a national database of unorganised workers. It is part of the integrated mechanism with a view to implementing social security measures for these workers.
The unorganised workers form the bulk of India’s labour force, and are the unsung heroes of the labour market. They are unimportant cogs, without whom the formal economy will be virtually brought to a standstill.
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