is further to our circular dated 4th August,
2005 giving you information about the draft
of the National Advisory Council (NAC) on the
Unorganised Sector Workers Social Security Bill
2005. The state meetings of unorganised sector
worker in Karnataka, Tamilnadu, and Kerala and
the Peoples Summit Against Poverty at Delhi.
This letter is to invite you for a National
Seminar on Comprehensive Legislation for Unorganised
Sector Workers. The details are:
on Comprehensive Legislation for
Unorganised Sector Workers
Date - 23rd November 2005
Place - Indian Social Institute
10 Lodi Institutional Areas, Delhi.
Time 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
National Seminar is aimed at reaching a consensus
with the Central Trade Unions, SEWA and NCL
and at involving different segments of unorganised
sector workers in the campaign. Reaching a consensus
on the main aspects of the Comprehensive Bill
for Unorganised Sector Workers has become important
in view of the following developments;
Bills proposed by Government of machinery
before the date for sending comments on the
Bill proposed by NAC (26th August 2005) ended
the National Commission for Enterprises in the
Unorganised Sector (NCEIS) circulated the following
two Bills and invited comments:
Unorganised Sector Workers Social Security Bill,
2) Unorganised Sector Workers (Livelihood Promotion
and Condition of Services)
Soon after that a National Consultation on Social
Security for Migrant Workers in the Informal
Sector was organized on 25th and 26th August,
2005 by the Institute for Human Development
and Grameen Vikas Trust which was sponsored
by DFID and ILO.
3rd September 2005 the Central Trade Unions
wrote a joint letter to the Labour Secretary
Shri K.L.Sahani on these Bills.
23rd and 24th September, 2005 the National Centre
for Labour organised another National Consultation
on the Social Security Bills and the National
Employment Guarantee Act and to finalise the
NCL's Comprehensive Bill for Unorganised Labour
in association with the Social Security Association
of India, Centre for Labour Studies of the National
Law School of India University and Friedrich
Ebert Stiftung (FES) at New Delhi.
T.S. Sankaran wrote his comments to Shri K.
Jayashankar, acting chairperson of NCEUS on
the two Bills circulated by the commission.
The views of the NCC-USW are the same as conveyed
by this letter.
National Workshop on the National Common Minimum
Programme of the UPA Government held on 4th
and 5th October 2005 by NCL at Bangalore constituted
Committee to look into the recommendations and
suggestions on the draft Bill prepared by NCEUS
vis a vis the draft Comprehensive Bill prepared
by the NCL.
Expert Committee meeting was held at Delhi on
27th and 28th 0ctober 2005. The NCC-USW representative
suggested that instead of our accepting the
move of the NCEUS to have two separate Bills,
one for social security alone and another for
the conditions of work and measures of livelihood
promotion let us remain firm on the position
that there must be an integrated single law
which will include not merely provisions
for social security but also for the more important
issues like regulation of employment, security
of livelihood, conditions of work, protection
of environment, guarantee of customary rights
including access to common natural resources
and so on, all to be provided through schemes
in the drafting of which and implementation
of which, the workers will have effective voice
through tripartite Boards and their subordinate
tripartite bodies at lower levels like district,
tehsil, Panchayat samities, project areas and
joint letter of the Central Trade Unions on
this aspect states that "the drafts
put by the NCEUS on its website have in our
opinion correctly bifurcated the twin aspects
of Social Security and Conditions of work and
livelihood of the Unorganised sector workers"
which is different from the NCC-USW position.
But most of the other suggestions given by NCC-USW
are the same as given in this joint letter to
the Secretary of the Union Labour Ministry.
had expressed its own view in a draft Bill prepared
by them which was confined to 'Social Security'
but we are quite hopeful that they will understand
the importance of the regulation of employment
suggested by us in the Comprehensive Bill.
are conflicting reports in the Press regarding
the willingness of the central and state governments
to fund the social security of Unorganised sector
workers. According to news reports, the total
contribution to the proposed National Social
Security Fund would be Rs. 32,850 crores and
it is estimated that Rs. 17,548 crores will
come from the centre and Rs.5010 from the states.
According to Mr. Kannan of NCEUIS, "This
amounts to only 0.8% of GDP in 2004-2005 and
isn't too much for the centre to provide Minimum
Social Security to those who earn 45%of national
Press report states that the Prime Minister
favours a cess to build up a social security
fund for Unorganised sector workers. Yet
another article says the hidden reluctance
of the Finance Ministry of the central government
and also the state governments is the main cause
of delay in enacting legislation for the unorganised
an All India Convention of Unorganised Sector
Workers at Faridabad on 3rd and 4th October,
2005 by CITU, Peoples Democracy gave a call
to build a united movement. However, a unilateral
call was given for a rally to Parliament on
8th December, 2005 and to prepare for a countrywide
general strike of unorganised sector worker
during 2006, ignoring all other central trade
unions with which it has been signing joint
letters on the Unorganised Sector Workers Bill
of 2003, 2004 and 2005 to the government.
Given the above background, we believe that
a consensus among all will definitely serve
the cause of Unorganised sector workers better
than different initiatives. The next session
of Parliament is before us and the delayed meeting
of the Indian Labour Conference is also scheduled
on 9-10 December, 2005.To reach a consensus
on the main concepts of a comprehensive legislation,
NCC-USW is organizing a National Seminar on
23rd November 2005 at the Indian Social Institute,
Delhi. Before this meeting NCC-USW will organize
meetings with SEWA representatives and central
trade unions to ensure their participation in
this seminar. NCL representatives were asked
in the last two meetings itself to participate
in the NCC-USW seminar to come to a consensus
with as many organizations as possible.
are requested to attend this National Seminar,
both to consolidate and to enlarge the consensus
on crucial aspects of the comprehensive social
security legislation for the unorganised sector
Co-ordinator of NCCUSW