Upon the recommendations of the National Commission on labour to consolidate the central labour laws, the Ministry of Labour and Employment had introduced the Code on Social security, 2020 (“Code”) which recognized “Gig workers” and “Platform workers”.
According to the Code, a “Gig worker” is a person who performs work or participates in a work arrangement and earns from such activities outside of traditional employer-employee relationship whereas a “Platform work” refers to a work arrangement outside of traditional employer- employee relationship in which the organisations or individuals use an online platform to access other organisations or individuals to solve specific problems or to provide specific services or any such other activities which may be notified by the Central Government, in exchange for payment.
Pursuant to the enactment of the Code, it was proposed that the social security would be provided to all the employees and workers either in the organized, unorganized or any other sector but currently the Code is not in effect as the State Governments of each State (in India) are in the process of finalizing the Rules for the purpose of the said Code.
Recently, on July 24, 2023, State of Rajasthan has issued a bill for providing social security for the welfare of the Gig workers in “Rajasthan Platform Based Gig Workers (Registration and Welfare) Bill, 2023.
Salient features of Rajasthan Platform based Gig workers (Registration and Welfare) Bill, 2023 are as below:
- The bill applies to the whole state of Rajasthan.
- It includes the definition of a “Gig worker” as “a person who performs work or participates in a work arrangement and earns from such activities outside of the traditional employer-employee relationship and who works on contract that results in a given rate of payment, based on terms and conditions laid down in such contract and includes piece-rate work”.
- It includes the definition of an “aggregator” as “a digital intermediary for a buyer of goods or user of a service to connect with the seller or the service provider, and includes any entity that coordinates with one or more aggregators for providing the services”.
- It establishes a Platform based Gig workers welfare board which is required to-
- Ensure that all the Gig workers and Aggregators from all across the State are registered.
- Ensure that the welfare fee deduction mechanism is integrated with the application of the aggregator.
- Set up monitoring mechanism, for review and compliance of the provisions under the Act.
- Monitor schemes for social security of registered Platform based Gig workers.
- Ensure time bound redressal of grievances related to the rights of the registered Gig workers.
- Engage with registered unions in relation to the Platform based Gig workers.
- Constitute a committee for providing recommendations to the State government for review, implementation and formulations of the schemes for the welfare of Gig workers.
- Provision of Unique-ID– Under the Bill, the State upon the registration of a Gig worker with any or all of the aggregators of the State shall provide a Unique-ID in order to facilitate the Platform based Gig workers to a wide range of social security programs.
- Provision of Social security and Welfare fund– The bill introduced a social security and welfare fund for the benefit of the registered Platform based Gig workers.
- Provision of Representation and decision making– It empowers the Platform based Gig workers to participate in all the decisions with regard to their welfare through their representation in the board.
- Imposition of Penalties- The bill imposes certain penalties upon the aggregator for non- compliance of the provisions under the act – thereby imposing a fine of INR 500,00 (approximately US$ 6,100) for the first contravention and up to INR 5,000,000 approximately US$ 61,000) for subsequent contravention.
Disclaimer: The contents of the above publication are based on interpretation, analysis and understanding of applicable laws and updates in law, within the knowledge of authors. Readers should take steps to ascertain the current developments given the everyday changes that may be occurring in India on internationally on the subject covered hereinabove. This is not a legal opinion, analysis or interpretation. This is an initiative to share developments in the world of law or as may be relevant for a reader. No reader should act on the basis of any statement made above without seeking professional and up-to-date legal advice.