Parliament on Thursday passed a key bill that will benefit employees including women. The Bill empowers the government to fix the amount of tax-free gratuity and the period of maternity leave with an executive order.
The Rajya Sabha, which has failed to transact any significant business over the last fortnight due to protests by various parties, on Thursday passed the Payment of Gratuity (Amendment) Bill without discussion.
This is the first Bill passed by the Rajya Sabha in the second half of the Budget Session, which began on March 5.
The Bill was passed unanimously in the House without discussion or din as all parties had agreed on the importance of the passage of the Bill.
Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu said that he had urged the members to take up the key bill.
The bill was moved by MoS, Labour and Employment, Santosh Kumar Gangwar, was passed by a voice vote.
The Bill was taken up for voice vote on clause-by-clause amendments. Congress MP Subbirami Reddy, who had earlier sought amendments, did not move the amendments.
The Lok Sabha had passed bill just last week.
The Bill seeks to make formal sector workers eligible for tax free Rs 20 lakh gratuity in line with the implementation of the 7th Central Pay Commission.
Earlier the formal sector workers were eligible for Rs 10 lakh tax free gratuity after leaving job or at time of superannuation.
The Bill also seeks to allow the central government to notify the maternity leave period for female employees in place of twelve weeks. …..The proposal comes against the backdrop of the Maternity Benefit Amendment Act, 2017 enhancing the maximum maternity leave period to 26 weeks.
The Payment of Gratuity Act, 1972 was enacted to provide for a scheme for the payment of gratuity to employees engaged in factories, mines, oilfields, plantations, ports, railway companies, shops or other establishments who have rendered a minimum five years of continuous service with an establishment employing ten or more persons.