The leader of the Sangh Parivar’s labour arm attacked the NDA government’s reform push on Monday, calling for a course correction and rollback of “wrong” industrial laws such as the one enacted by Rajasthan to make layoffs easier.
The government’s labour reforms to improve the ease of doing business and lift flagging economic growth have been stymied by differences over the contentious issues of contractual work and minimum wages, besides the effort to recast various laws.
“Some of the wrong policies initiated by the government have affected the workers and people in general,” Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh (BMS) president BN Rai said at the 46th Indian Labour Conference, with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in attendance.
Rai tore into the government’s FDI policy, saying foreign investment “could not even reach a double-digit percentage in our total economy”
Modi later said reforms would be implemented only after discussions with labour unions while Jaitley stressed on the need to keep larger economic goals in mind.
“Even if we are a leader of any union or a worker of any organisation, we should not decide on anything which would deter economic activity or employment opportunities,” Jaitley said, alluding to the union’s criticism of labour reforms.
A sluggish industry would never be able to create jobs and only an efficient one could do so, he said.
The BMS, however, is expected to stick to its guns and participate in a nationwide protest that will include labour outfits from the Left parties.