The Madras High Court issued notice to the Centre on a PIL challenging the provisions of the Code on Social Security, which allegedly reduced the benefits guaranteed for women under the Maternity Benefits Act.Admitting the plea moved by Vahitha Parveen, convenor of the All India Working Women Forum of the AITUC, the first bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy directed the Union to respond to the plea in four weeks.
According to the petitioner, the Maternity Benefits Act provides cash benefits to the woman employed in any coverable establishment almost to the extent of their wages.But the Code on Social Security which proclaims that it replaces the existing Maternity Benefit Act reduces drastically the quantum of maternity benefit payable to working women and makes benefits payment only with reference to the minimum wages payable, the petitioner said. She alleged that the provisions of the Code on Social Security make the life of working women miserable.
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