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HindustanTimes Wed,01 Oct 2014

Flexi hours for women, other work reforms soon

Hindustan Times  Saubhadra Chatterji & Gaurav Choudhury, July 31, 2014
First Published: 00:31 IST(31/7/2014) | Last Updated: 00:39 IST(31/7/2014)

The Narendra Modi-led cabinet cleared on Wednesday two major bills for labour reforms — the apprenticeship act and the factories act amendment bills — that will make the labour sector more responsive to industry demands.

The cabinet also cleared a fresh draft of the Indian Institutes of Information Technology (IIIT) bill, which had lapsed at the end of the previous Lok Sabha. The bill seeks to establish new IIITs — along the lines of IITs  — that  will focus only on IT education.

The government will try to pass these three bills in Parliament in the ongoing monsoon session, top sources said.

The new apprentice bill gives more flexibility to establishments to engage apprentices while adding trades under the training programmes. These steps are expected to open up more job opportunity for the youth.

Among the changes proposed in the factories act, 1948, women will be able to work night shifts in factories and workers will be able to do more hours of overtime.

The apprentice bill allows organisations operating in more than four states to get central clearances for training schemes instead of going to each state authority.

The new law also expands the definition of workers to include contractual, daily, casual and seasonal workers in apprentice programmes. The current law only recognises permanent workers for apprentice programmes.


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