Find out actual data of job losses amid Covid, Parl panel to govt

As the employment scenario in the country is yet to see a recovery, a Parliamentary panel has suggested the government should ascertain the actual data of job losses caused amid the pandemic in order to provide support to those impacted.

The 25th report of the Standing Committee on Labour on ‘Impact of Covid-19 on Rising Unemployment and Loss of Jobs/Livelihood in Organised and Unorganised Sectors’ was tabled in the Lok Sabha.

The panel, chaired by BJD member Bhartruhari Mahtab, has impressed upon the government to be more pro-active and capture the actual data so as to give requisite support to those workers who have been out of employment.

“The Committee have desired the Ministry to again intervene in the matter to reassess the causes of failure of the reconciliation process and motivate the workers to pursue their cases so that the poor workers get reinstated at this difficult time,” it said.

It also advised that the ministry should suo-moto make efforts to find out similar cases of termination or retrenchment at the Central sphere, and in other cities and states and take corrective action based on the findings.

Further, the committee has recommended that measures for economic reactivation should follow a job-rich approach, backed by stronger employment policies and better resourced and a comprehensive social protection system.

International coordination on stimulus packages and debt relief measures, especially for MSMEs, will prove to be very critical to the multi-pronged approach towards effective and sustainable recovery, it said.

The committee has observed that formalising the unorganised sector, increasing the productivity, strengthening and upgrading the existing livelihoods and creating new opportunities should remain the major thrust areas to mitigate the impact of Covid-19 pandemic on unemployment and joblessness.

It has also recommended that social security measures need to be strengthened and made attractive. Further, the government should explore ways and means to put in money in the bank accounts of the informal workers during adverse conditions like Covid-19.

It felt that in the short term, it is imperative for the government to expand the social assistance and public welfare programmes, both in the urban and rural areas, to provide relief and protection to the most vulnerable and disadvantaged strata of the society. Offering another round of income support to the poor to compensate for loss of jobs or employment incurred due to the two lockdowns imposed would go a long way in mitigating their woes, it urged.