Gangwar addresses 109th session of ILC, reiterates India’s committment towards countering COVID impact

Union Minister of State (independent charge) for Labour and Employment Santosh Gangwar on Saturday reiterated India’s commitment towards making all possible efforts to counter the impact of the pandemic, and emerge stronger.

Addressing the virtual Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Labour Ministers Meeting under 109th session of the International Labour Conference (ILC) here last evening, Gangwar said the world has witnessed loss of lives and livelihood, slowdown of economies, adverse impact on the entire sections of the society and especially, the weaker ones more unsafe.

Expressing the need to ensure better support to the health-care systems, social protection and employment generation, he said the governments are required to deal with the pandemic and provide an effective response at policy levels, to balance business continuity, income security and above everything, well-being of all.

The Union Minister informed that India has undertaken a massive vaccination drive, and a total of 223 million vaccines have been administered so far. He said, there have been extraordinary changes in the lives and livelihoods and new approach should be developed for the style of the work.

He stated that although the use of digital platforms has posed challenges but they have also provided more opportunities, adding that India has made a legal framework for social security of Gig and Platform workers also.

With employment being an important aspect, Gangwar said India is putting key efforts through various schemes and programmes to provide employment and support on health and financial fronts also.

According to the Ministry of Labour and Employment, India has launched Aatmnirbhar Bharat package for self- reliance worth Rs 27,000 billion to strengthen the economy, which also include payment of EPF contributions upto 24 per cent of wages by the government, with respect to eligible new employees. Further, collateral free loans worth Rs 9,000 billion have been disbursed under MUDRA Yojana in the last three years, having around 70 per cent accounts of women.

The Minister added that increase in daily wages, under Mahatma Gandhi NREGA scheme for rural India, has resulted in employment generation of 3.9 billion man days during last financial year alone.

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