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Rs 4,957 crore cash assistance disbursed to approx 2 crore construction workers during lockdown: Govt

About 1.75 crore transactions were done directly into the bank accounts of the workers through Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT), the Ministry of Labour and Employment said.

SNS | New Delhi |

In a response to the Ministry of Labour and Employment, the state governments have told that they have disbursed a substantial amount of Rs 4957 crore cash assistance till date to approximately two crore registered construction workers across the country during the lockdown.

The response came to the advisory dated 24th March 2020 issued by the Ministry.

About 1.75 crore transactions were done directly into the bank accounts of the workers through Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT). Apart from cash benefits ranging from Rs 1000 to Rs 6000 per worker during the lockdown, some of the States have also provided food and ration to their workers.

“The building and other construction workers (BOCW) are the most vulnerable segment of the unorganized sector workers in India. They work under aggravating conditions with uncertain future. A large chunk of them are migrant labourers working in different states far away from their native places. They play a significant role in nation-building yet find themselves on the margins of the society,” Ministry of Labour and Employment said in a press note.

A timely advisory was sent to all the Chief Ministers on 24th March, 2020 by the Union Minister of Labour and Employment, advising the States to frame a scheme under section 22 (1) (h) of the Act, for transfer of adequate funds in the bank accounts of construction workers through direct benefit transfer (DBT) mode. The amount to be granted to the construction workers was to be decided by the respective State Governments necessary for their subsistence. The advisory was issued to help mitigate the financial crisis faced by construction workers. A similar letter was also written by the Secretary of Labour & Employment to the Chief Secretaries of all the States and vigorously followed through Video Conferencing from time to time, it added.