India is reportedly set to introduce welfare initiatives for gig workers employed by platforms such as Amazon, Uber, and Zomato as the country moves into election season in 2024.
What It’s All About: These provisions, aligned with the Social Security Code of 2020, could include health, accident, and retirement benefits, Reuters reported. The move comes as gig workers increasingly become a vital part of India’s economy – a trend driven by pandemic restrictions and high unemployment.
The government’s push for welfare measures follows Rajasthan’s approval of a fund financed through platform sales surcharges. Trade unions, gig platforms, and state officials have engaged in discussions, and there is an urgency to implement these measures, sources told the business publication.
Why It Matters: While the specifics are yet to be detailed, the measures could offer state-funded medical and accident insurance, grievance resolution and an employer contribution mechanism. Major platforms like Amazon and Uber are reportedly supportive of the proposal, aiming for a transparent welfare fund.
Despite the lack of precise data on India’s gig economy size, estimates suggest it employs around 10-15 million people.
NITI Aayog, the government’s think tank, anticipates that by 2030, the gig economy could provide jobs for over 23.5 million, constituting around 7% of the non-farm workforce.
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Gig workers have registered on a government portal to create a comprehensive database, but challenges persist. Representatives advocate for better recognition and labour law protection.
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