Gender plays an important parameter while determining salaries in India. According to Monster Salary Index (MSI), women in India earn 20% less than the men. The wage gap means that a woman with the same qualifications as a man earns less than him. This prompted Congress MP Husain Dalwai to introduce the Gender Pay Gap Bill, 2018, to implement the “Constitutional goal” of equal pay for equal work and extending it to corporates and NGOs.
Dalwai, representing Maharashtra in the Rajya Sabha, recently introduced The Prevention of Gender Pay Gap Bill to address the disparity in wages in the labour and employment sector. The Bill addresses the pay gap for women and transgender people.
In 2017, India ranked 108 out of 144 countries of the world on the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Index
According to the data, men earned a median gross hourly salary of Rs 345.8 in 2016. In comparison, the women earned only Rs. 259.8. However, the total gap had reduced by two percentage points since 2015.
Despite gains in education and skills, women earn less than the men.
“This Bill attempts to give effect to these constitutional provisions. It is essential to ensure that work done by different genders is valued fairly to achieve gender equality. It is also a core component of decent work.”
It also states that The Equal Remuneration Act 1976 aims to provide for the payment of equal remuneration to men and women workers and for the prevention of discrimination, on the ground of sex. The Bill attempts to address the issue, however, it is insufficient, and limited in its scope. It notes that the Bill is applicable only to the establishment, factory, mine oilfield, plantation, port, railway company or shop either government or privately owned covered under the Payment of Gratuity Act. It does not include transgender employees and doesn’t cover corporate organisations, NGOs and others with managerial and supervisory staff.
The Bill talks about the existing gender pay. It presented the previous research findings on gender discrimination. It also talks about the increase in the pay gap. The Bill also talks about the rights of equal pay for transgenders. The Bill states, “Marginalisation and discrimination pushes the transgender community down the socio-economic ladder when it comes to social and economic empowerment. This also translates into discrimination in remuneration at the workplace.”
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