Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Bill introduced in LS

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New Delhi, Mar 19 (UNI) Labour Minister Oscar Fernandes moved the Maternity Benfit (Amendment) Bill, 2008 in the Lok Sabha today.

The bill has already been pased by Rajya Sabha.

Moving the bill, Mr Fernandes said the bill would ensure enhancing the medical bonus for the women in the organised as well as in the unorganised sector.

He said the Maternity Benefits Act, 1961 regulate the employment of women in factories, mines, the circus industry, plantations and shops or establishemnts employing 10 or more persons, except the employees who are covered under the Employees State insurance for certain period before and after childbirth and provides for maternity and other benefits.

He said the section 8 of the said Act is being amended to enhance medical bonus from Rs 250 to Rs 1000. Further, the Central Government is also being empowered to increse the said medical bonus from time to time, by notification in the Official Gazette, subject to the maximum of Rs 20,000. The delegation of legislatie power is of a normal character, Mr Fernandes added.

Participating in the discussion Ms P Sathidevi (CPI-M) urged the chair to convey to the Government that the Maternity benefit aimed through this amendment actually reaches the beneficiary.

Shailendra Kumar (SP), supporting the bill, wanted to know from the Government how the it is going to monitor the implementation of it in the states.

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