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Wage Disparities

  • Date Submitted: 09/01/2013 05:43 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 49.7 
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The Minimum Wages Act 1948 in India guarantees payment of minimum wages to workers in various sectors,
including the agriculture sector. This act empowers state governments to fix and revise minimum wage rates
for different agricultural activities. Once fixed, the wage rates are revised at an interval not exceeding five
years. Wages are fixed for timework, known as a ‘minimum time rate (daily wage rate),’ or for piecework,
known as a ‘minimum piece rate.’ The act also fixes hours for
a working day.
In order to have a uniform
wage structure and to reduce the disparity in minimum wages across the country, the concept of National
Floor Level Minimum Wage was initiated on the basis of the recommendations of the National Commission on
Rural Labor (NCRL) in 1991. The State Governments are persuaded to fix minimum wages such that in none
of the scheduled employments, the minimum wage is less than the National Floor Level Minimum Wage.
As a consequence of the lack of proper implementation or
enforcement of the minimum wage laws, workers in the agricultural sector (who are not well organized) are
unable to avail all benefits they are entitled to receive by legislation designed to protect them
The wage rates and payment patterns differ widely across the country. Wage rates are different for men
and women, with women paid less than men for the same work.

Wage disparities higher in physically demanding work
July 14, 2013:  
Equal pay for equal work is one of the cornerstones of the gender equality movement the world over.
But Labour Bureau data show there has been little progress in terms of parity of salaries for men and women for equivalent work in India.
Even more alarming is the fact that even though wage disparities have always existed in rural parts of the country, in some spheres of activity, the divide has widened.
So while men were paid 70 per cent higher wages than women for ploughing work at the end of 2004-05, the...


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