AMN / NEW DELHI
The government will give employers the salaries for seven of the 26 weeks of maternity leave for women earning more than 15,000 rupees a month, the Women and Child Development Ministry announced on Thursday.
The announcement, which covers the government as well as the private sector, comes in the wake of complaints that many companies were reluctant to hire pregnant women after maternity leave was extended from 12 to 26 weeks and some were even firing women employees.
WCD Secretary Rakesh Srivastava said it has been decided to utilise the funds lying in the labour welfare cess to pay the employers.
Speaking to reporters in New Delhi, Mr Srivastava said the utilisation of the cess lying with the state governments has been very less.
He said, after talks with the Labour Ministry it has been decided that the seven of the 26 weeks of maternity leave for all women employees in the private and government sector getting more than 15,000 rupees a month would be paid from that fund.
Maternity leave was extended from 12 weeks to 26 weeks last year.