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economy | IST

Govt takes serious cognizance of layoffs, pay cuts; labour ministry to share data with PMO

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The government has taken serious cognizance of the layoffs and pay cuts announced by various organisations amid the coronavirus crisis, sources told CNBC-TV18, adding that the labour ministry will be collecting data on salary reductions and job cuts on regular basis and analyse the trends through the control rooms.

Unhappy with layoffs and pay cuts announced by various organisations amid the coronavirus crisis, the government has taken serious cognizance of the trend and now at the helm is the labour ministry, which has been tasked to collate the data on pay cuts and pink slips during lockdown or wherever the cut is happening as an impact of COVID-19, government sources told CNBC-TV18.
“The labour ministry has started collecting data on salary reductions and job cuts on a daily basis and a weekly report will be submitted to the Prime Minister’s Office to note the unemployment scenario in the country,” government sources added.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his address to the nation has been saying that business, establishments should not go in for job cuts or pay cuts during these trying times.
On 23rd March, the Labour Ministry had advised all companies, private and public sector, to not to cut jobs or salaries, including those of casual workers.
Labour Secretary Heeralal Samariya in a letter to the Chief Secretaries of all States and Union Territories had written saying that a joint effort by all sections of society to address the impact of Covid-19 is needed. He expressed apprehensions that the situation may lead to lay-offs or employees being forced to go on leave without pay.
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“In the backdrop of such a challenging situation all the employers of public/private establishments may be advised to extend their coordination by not terminating their employees, particularly casual or contractual workers, from their jobs, or reducing their wages,” he appealed.
And now, yet again labour ministry has asked states to ensure emphasis on this advisory on job cuts and pay cuts, sources added.
Apart from this, the additional arms of labour ministry, that is the Employees' Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) and Employees' State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) have also been tasked to collate job cut and pay cut data, sources added.
“Since it is not a part of their routine work, additional guidelines will soon be issued by the labour ministry for EPFO &ESIC based on which they will collect & share data” sources added.
Besides this, the ministry had set up 20 control rooms to deal with the issues of labours and the initial analysis of the complaints/grievances shows that out of 1500 complaints received so far, “1000 are from the state sphere regarding the delay in payment of salaries and a majority of central sphere complaints are regarding the EPFO. Apart from this, a lot of complaints are regarding pay cuts across the country and for migrant labourers it's again lack of food and shelter facilities,” sources added.
Many firms are resorting to layoffs and pay cuts to reduce costs and stay afloat amid the COVID-19 crisis that is likely to cause huge losses for businesses.