Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Journalists Wage Board recommendations at stake: INS urges Centre to reject

Journalists Wage Board recommendations at stake: INS urges Centre to reject

Chennai, 14 February, (Asiantribune.com):

The recommendation of the wage board for Indian Journalists and non journalists headed by Justice Majithia is at stake. The Indian News paper Society (INS) has urged the union government to reject the recommendations.

"The demand of the INS sending a shock wave to all the journalist community", former Kerala working journalist’s union president and veteran journalist C R R Ramachandran told 'Asian Tribune."

Various journalists’ organization in the country feels bad taste of INS.
In a letter to union labor and employment minister Mr Mallikarjun Kharge, INS president Kundan R. Vyas said the reports were prepared in breach of several rules and time-tested procedures.

The Boards exceeded their term by suggesting measures that were manifestly beyond the terms of reference and scope. The reports were flawed and one-sided and, if these were accepted by the government, several newspaper establishments would be driven out of business.

No analysis of credible financial data

The Boards' Chairman submitted the reports without prior consultations with members. No analysis of any credible financial data was carried out to arrive at the paying capacity of different classes of publications.

Settled principles to assess the capacity to pay had been ignored and no effort was made to assess the burden on the newspaper industry. The Boards had not bothered to publish tentative proposals as was done by the earlier Wage Boards determining authorities to respect the principles of fair play and natural justice, Mr. Vyas said.

Meanwhile, Justice Majithia said, that if his recommendations were implemented, the minimum basic salary of the new comer in the class IV category in the highest classification (of newspapers/news agencies) would be Rs. 9,000 a month. “I want intellectuals, honest, upright and dedicated persons to enter the journalistic profession. If you don't pay them well how will you get good people and expect the profession to flourish?”

Welfare of Journalists

The reports had been prepared keeping the welfare of journalists and other employees in mind in the long run and if they properly implement them the interests of such workers would be taken care of for the next 20 years. “Though I may not live for such a long period my report will live,” he said.

On of the wage board member Prasanakumar said, among other things, suggestions had been made for setting up a permanent tribunal, on the lines of the Central Administrative Tribunal, to adjudicate complaints of disregard/circumvention of Wage Boards awards; formulation of an appropriate pension scheme for newspaper/news agencies employees; increasing the retirement age to 65.

As per the recommendations, every employee will get a minimum of three promotions in his career in an organization, Mr Kumar added.

- Asian Tribune -

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