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Use Funds Meant For Construction Workers To Help Other Workers Too: Top Court

The courtroom mentioned that different staff are “equally poor” and the Centre needs to be “proactive”.

New Delhi:

The Supreme Court on Friday requested the Centre as to why it can’t situation an Ordinance that funds collected underneath the welfare scheme meant for constructing and building staff throughout the nation be used for different staff as properly throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

A 3-judge bench headed by Chief Justice SA Bobde mentioned that different staff are “equally poor” and the Centre needs to be “proactive” on this situation.

“Why don’t you simply issue an Ordinance that during the COVID period, you can use it for construction workers and other workers also,” the bench, additionally comprising Justices AS Bopanna and V Ramasubramanian, requested Additional Solicitor General Madhavi Divan.

Madhavi Divan informed the bench that she would take instruction on the difficulty and get again to the courtroom.

The situation cropped up earlier than the courtroom which was listening to an utility filed by Madhya Pradesh searching for permission to withdraw Rs 1,000 crore from a complete of Rs 1,985 crore collected underneath the welfare scheme for building and constructing staff.

The counsel showing for Madhya Pradesh informed the bench that the state wanted cash as income move has come right down to 50 per cent because of the pandemic.

He mentioned that quantity collected underneath the scheme for building and constructing staff is with the state welfare board.

“We pray for Rs 1,000 crore subject to whatever interest which the state welfare board will earn in 12 months. We will return the money to the state welfare board with interest,” the lawyer mentioned.

The utility was filed in a matter by which a petition was moved within the courtroom in 2006 searching for implementation of two legal guidelines — the Building and Other Construction Workers (Regulation of Employment and Conditions of Service) Act, 1996 and the Building and Other Construction Workers” Welfare Cess Act, 1996, (Cess Act) — meant for welfare of building staff throughout the nation.

During the listening to performed by means of video-conferencing, the counsel showing for the petitioner opposed the plea filed by Madhya Pradesh.

The bench requested the state’s counsel as to why they wish to “withdraw Rs 1,000 crore” from the fund for different objective.

“We collect this amount every year and distribute it every year,” the lawyer mentioned, including that many migrants staff have come to Madhya Pradesh as a consequence of COVID-19 pandemic and the state can’t pay them since they aren’t registered.

“Why don’t you register them? You identify those whom you want to give benefit. Once you will identify them then you can give them the benefit,” the bench mentioned.

The state’s counsel mentioned that state can register solely these staff who’re concerned in constructing and building works because the fund underneath the 1996 regulation is supposed for them solely.

The bench, whereas asking Divan about whether or not such an Ordinance might be issued to make use of the funds collected for different staff additionally, mentioned that authorities can put a situation that those that would withdraw cash from the fund would return it inside a time interval.

“You (Centre) have to be proactive,” the bench mentioned.

“Madhavi Divan, Additional Solicitor General, appearing on behalf of the Union of India seeks some time to get instructions. List the matter after two weeks,” it mentioned.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV workers and is printed from a syndicated feed.)

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