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Issue 32
, 2011
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Prevention of silicosis, asbestosis key parts of new labour policy

Source: Pioneer, New Delhi, April 27, 2011, Date: , 2011

Provisions for prevention of such serious ailments as silicosis and asbestosis are going to become important parts of the new National Labour Policy.

The Factory Chief Inspectors, who have assembled in the State capital for thrashing out solutions to serious problems faced by labourers, have presented their recommendation to this effect. Prevention of silicosis among labourers of slate pencil industry in Mandsaur district of Madhya Pradesh is a crying need and the recommendation will pave the way for its inclusion in the National Labour Policy. The first discussion session of the three-day conference of Chief Factory Inspectors was focused mainly on health concerns of labourers.

Special attention is being given to prevention of industry-generated diseases in the National Labour Policy-2009, which is going to be amended and re-implemented soon. The Factory Chief Inspectors apart from cure of such diseases also laid greater emphasis on their prevention. Provisions for prevention of such diseases will be implemented uniformly in the entire country after identification of diseases and seeking views of scientists and experts.

The demand for major changes in the Labour Act 1948 has gained ground in view of speedy industrialisation with latest techniques under the present scenario. The participants came out with various suggestions for giving more teeth to the laws concerning labourers’ health security.

The Factory Chief Inspectors registered their opposition to different rules under Act prevalent in different States. They argued that they face several difficulties in implementing different provisions under the Labour Act 1848 since the employers of one State quote the provisions prevalent in one State when they start industry in another State. For removing this hurdle, the Factory Chief Inspectors suggested to bring about uniformity of these rules in all the States. They also cited various difficulties in detail about implementation of some rules and suggested to make them practicable.

Over 50 Factory Chief Inspectors and higher officials of the Union and Madhya Pradesh Governments are meeting in the city during a three-day conference for undertaking an exercise to amend National Labour Policy. Tuesday was the second day of the conference.