New Delhi, Dec 13 (UNI) Labour and Employment Minister Oscar Fernandes today made a strong case for greater partnership between the employer and the employees to make a more humane and just society and achieve the common objective of prosperity.
The Minister said the country needed a new partnership for inclusive growth and the industry must be proactive in offering employment to the less privileged at all levels of the job ladder and consider investing in people and their skills.
Mr Fernandes made these observations while presiding over the 42nd meeting of the Standing Committee on Labour attended by the State Labour Ministers.
''We must end forever the debate that the country's march of progress has benefitted India and not 'Bharat'.
''The government is committed to work with industry for the transformation of country's economic and social landscape,'' he said.
Mr Fernandes said the government does not believe in an adversarial relationship with industry but in a ''genuine partnership''.
He said employment generation was an important pillar of any strategy of inclusive growth. ''While our government will continue to create an environment friendly atmosphere for the growth of manufacturing, leaders of the industry must also facilitate employment creation,'' he said while stressing that in a modern, democratic society, business must assume wider social responsibility.
Referring to the Contract Labour (Regulation and Abolition) Act, 1970, the Minister said while trade unions have demanded that the Act should be amended to provide for automatic absorption of contract Labour, the employers' organisations vehemently opposed to it on the grounds that such a step would lead to capital-intensive measures like mechanisation and automation, resulting a fall in employment opportunities.
Earlier, Mr Fernandes chaired a meeting of the State Labour Ministers at the same venue where several issues like child labour and minimum wages were discussed.
The Labour Ministers from the states of Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Delhi, Haryana, J&K, Jharkhand, Kerala, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Manipur, Orissa, Punjab, Puducherry, Rajasthan and West Bengal attended the meeting.