Unorganised workers may soon get some relief as the state government has decided to implement the long-delayed welfare scheme for construction workers.
The state labour minister Hasan Mushrif announced this on Tuesday.
Last year, the state government had decided to levy 1% cess on construction cost on builders and contractors on all projects costing more than Rs10 lakh. This cess was then to be utilised for welfare of construction workers.
Even though the state government was collecting money from builders to be utilised for welfare schemes, construction workers were yet to receive any benefit.
“We have collected Rs141 cr so far. We have also set up welfare boards for workers,” said Mushrif.
Under the proposed scheme, workers will be eligible for a pension schemes, insurance cover and health care.
To avail benefits under this scheme, workers had to be registered with the boards.
The Central government had earlier passed The Building & Other Construction Workers’ Welfare Cess Act, 1996, which made it compulsory for state governments to impose cess on construction costs, which would then be used for workers’ benefit.
Maharashtra, however, failed to implement the scheme, but the state government was forced to do so after being reprimanded by the Supreme Court.
The state government had promised during the last assembly session that it would form welfare boards for domestic workers and construction workers.
The facilities under welfare this scheme include scholarships for children of these construction workers, no cut in daily wages for women on maternity leave, free health care and pension facility, among other benefits.
There are 4.12 crore labourers in the state, of which, 3.74 crore work in the unorganised sector.