The Delhi Cabinet on Saturday approved an increase of around 37 per cent in minimum wages in the capital. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal claimed that for the first time in the country, the minimum wages had been fixed scientifically.
With the Cabinet approving the recommendations made by a 15-member committee appointed to review wages in Delhi, the minimum wages for unskilled labour will increase from Rs 9,724 to Rs 13,350. Wages for semi-skilled labour will be up from Rs 10,764 to Rs 14,698 while those for skilled labour will rise from Rs 11,830 to Rs 16,182.
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“We have formed a committee again and taken the Lt-Governor’s approval. This committee has held meetings and carried out fresh market surveys. We will send the file to the L-G on Monday. Since all the objections raised earlier have been removed, I am hopeful that the L-G will clear this in a week,” said Kejriwal.
In September last year, former L-G Najeeb Jung had declared the recommendations “null and void” as the AAP dispensation did not seek his approval to form the panel.
Labour Minister Gopal Rai said the committee that recommended the revision in minimum wages included five members each from trade unions, employers and the government.
Minimum wages were not only fixed on parameters of food, housing and clothing but also on fuel and light, as recommended by the International Labour Organisation and the Supreme Court, Rai said. “Traders and industrialists should not be upset. They should think of the economic growth because we are putting money directly into the pockets of the poor…,” Kejriwal said.