Punjab Government has taken big strides for the upliftment of construction workers. Punjab Building & Other Construction Workers Welfare Board (PBOCW) had sanctioned amount of Rs.185.66 crore against 87764 applications of the beneficiaries under various Welfare Schemes outlined for the laborers unorganized sector. The Labour Department under ‘Punjab State Skill Development Mission’ has also chalked out a comprehensive programme to impart Skill Development training to the total 14790 construction workers engaged at 182 construction sites.
Speaking about the project L Chunni Lal Bhagat, Labour Minister, Punjab said the construction workers would be imparted training in phased manner. In the first phase, training for the construction workers engaged at 30 construction sites started from January 1, 2016. In the second phase skill development training for another lot of construction workers engaged at 30 more sites would commence from March 1, 2016.
The Labour Department is also constructing four skill development centers at Amritsar, Mohali, Ludhiana and Jalandhar to impart training to the construction workers.
To ensure security of these workers in the old age, PBOWC has deposited an amount of Rs. 110.00 crore in the Pension Fund created with the LIC under the Pension Scheme for construction workers. Rate of minimum pension under the scheme has also been increased from Rs. 5000 to 12000 per annum, and by increasing Rs. 1000 after every year, it may go up to Rs. 25000 per annum according to the length of membership of construction worker.
The amount of Ex-gratia under the Ex-gratia Scheme due to accidental death/ 100% disablement of a registered construction worker has also been enhanced from Rs. 2.00 Lakh to 4.00 Lakh and in case of natural death, it has been enhanced from Rs. 1.50 Lakh to 3.00 Lakh and also proportionate increase thereof in the case of partial disablement on the basis of percentage of such disablement. Besides this the grant for the cremation has also been increased from Rs. 10,000 to Rs. 20,000.
The Board is also building 27 Labour sheds-cum-night shelters for the workers. One Labour shed-cum-night shelter in Phase-XI, Mohali has already been completed and inaugurated. The construction at 5 other sites has been completed and the work on other sites is underway.
The financial benefit under the Maternity benefit scheme of the Board has been enhanced from Rs. 5000 to 21000 per child up to two children of female construction worker. The Board has also approved the Mobile Van Scheme for detection of Silicosis and other diseases of registered beneficiaries of the Board and their families. The board will also provide free tooth care and dentures to the construction workers.
To empower the children of construction workers, The Board has enhanced the scholarship amount for the children of workers from 1st standard to post gradation and medical /engineering courses for different classes from Rs. 3000 to Rs. 60,000 (for Boys) and Rs 4000 to Rs. 70,000 (for Girls), this scholarship earlier ranged from Rs. 2800 to Rs. 58000.
With all these initiatives, Punjab Government is constructing a bright and safe future for Punjab’s construction workers.