“National Seminar on Rational Minimum Wage Policy for the Unorganized Sector” 18th-19th January, 2011

Bandhua Mukti Morcha (BMM) in co-operation with the Planning Commission, and in collaboration with The Nehru Memorial Museum and Library is holding a two day long on “National Seminar on Rational Minimum Wage Policy for the Unorganized Sector” on January 18-19, 2011 at the Auditorium and Seminar Room of Nehru Memorial Museum and Library, Teen Murti, New Delhi. The opening plenary on the first day titled ‘Minimum Wages: A non negotiable Fundamental Right’ from 11:00am – 1: 30pm will be held in the Auditorium and will be chaired by Justice A. P Shah. The speakers of the session will include social activist Aruna Roy, Swami Agnivesh and social activist Harsh Mander. The second plenary on the 19th January from 10:00- 12:00pm, titled as “Making Minimum Wages Work: The Role of the State and the Market’ will be chaired by Justice Verma. The speakers for this session will include Professor Mohan Gopal, Director, National Judicial Academy, Bhopal; Shri.K B Saxena, Former Secretary, Ministry of Rural Development; Dr B D Sharma You must be aware that the Planning Commission is holding a series of consultations as a precursor to the Approach Document for the12th Five Year Plan (2012-2017). The main goal of the Twelfth Five Year Plan is “faster, sustainable and more inclusive growth”. Since the Approach Paper provides the basic structure and approach for the 12th Five Year Plan and is approved by the Cabinet and the National Development Council, these consultations serve as an important platform for concerned sections of the population to voice their opinions and impact State policy. The Seminar, we hope, would initiate this process by addressing the following issues: 1. To define the principles e.g., need-based, work-based and/or GDP, on the basis of which it would be appropriate to calculate a minimum wage, taking into consideration the procedure for “method inflation indexation”, as is the operational procedure for the fixing of salaries of Government employees. 2. to discuss the implementation and enforcement of the minimum wages accordingly; 3. to discuss role of employment guarantee programs in actualizing the payment of minimum wages for the unorganized sector and the need for clear policy decision to mandate payment of minimum wage under NREGA; and 4. to discuss issues related to the National Minimum Wage (floor) and state minimum wages

In my thirty years of experience of working on the issues of identification and rehabilitation of bonded labourers through approaching the Judiciary, I’m convinced that these issues cannot be resolved without the consideration of a comprehensive minimum wage legislation and policy. A broad mix of activists, academics, jurists and policy makers along with trade union and industry representatives will participate in the two day long Seminar. Please confirm your participation at the earliest. Delegates will be reimbursed up to 3-Tier AC Sleeper rail fare to and fro the point of origin. Those who wish to avail the facility of accommodation may please give details of their arrival and departure so that arrangements can be made accordingly. Contact numbers and email addresses may also be mentioned to contact them on arrival accordingly. Accommodation will be arranged from the afternoon of 17th January i.e. a day before the Seminar. You will be required to check out in the morning of 20th January, 2011. We hope that you will come and share your views.

Regards, Swami Agnivesh R.S.V.P: Office of Swami Agnivesh , Phone –011-23367943, 23363221 E-mail – agnivesh70@gmail.com H.R.Bangia Mob- 09811326670 , E-mail – h.r.bangia@gmail.com Manu Singh Mob- 09911089216 , E-mail – manu2183@rediffmail.com