Rajwinder Singh,Delhi : The Government has issued notifications constituting the Wage Boards for Working Journalists and non-journalists of newspapers and news agencies with effect from. 24th May 2007.
The Boards have been constituted for the purpose of fixing or revising rates of wages of working journalists and other newspaper employees and journalists and non-journalists of news agencies in accordance with the provisions of the Working Journalists and Other Newspaper Employees (Conditions of service) and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1955. The headquarters of the Wage Boards will be New Delhi. The Boards have been asked to submit their reports within three years.
Both the Wage Boards will have 10 members each headed by Dr. Justice K. Narayana Kurup. Justice K. Narayana Kurup is a former Judge of Kerala High Court and has also served as Acting Chief Justice of Madras High Court.
Mr. K.M. Sahni, former Labour and Employment Secretary, will be the Member Secretary for both the Boards. The other independent members common to both the Boards are Mr. B.P. Singh and Mr. P.N. Prasanna Kumar.
Mr. Naresh Mohan (Indian Newspaper Society), Mr. Gurinder Singh (All India Small and Medium Newspapers Federation), Mr. Prataprai Tarachand Shah ( Indian Language Newspaper Association) will be representing employers on both the Wage Boards.
Mr. K. Vikram Rao (Indian Federation of Working Journalists), Mr. Nand Kishore Trikha (National Union of Journalists (India) and Mr. Suresh Akhouri (Indian Journalists Union) will represent the Working Journalists on the Wage Board for Working Journalists.
Mr. Madan Phadnis (All India Newspaper Employees Federation), Mr. Uma Shankar Mishra (National Federation of Newspaper Employees) and Mr. M.S. Yadav (Press Trust of India) will represent non-journalists on the Wage Boards for Non-Working Journalists.
Update: New Delhi, July 22, 2008: Justice K. Narayana Kurup submitted an interim report of the two wage boards– recommending an interim relief of 30 per cent of the basic salary for newspaper employees with effect from January 8, 2008, to the Minister of State for Labour and Employment Oscar Fernandes on July 22.
This decision was arrived at through voting after a detailed discussion at a meeting held here last month. Trade unions of newspaper employees said that the proposed interim relief was inadequate in view of the increasing inflation rates and demanded that the recommendation should be revised.
New Delhi, July 22: Mr. Fernandez said that the Government would take a decision on interim relief within a week. The report was to be considered by the Union Cabinet.
(Justice Kurup has submitted his resignation to the Cabinet Secretary.)
New Delhi, October 8: The Union Cabinet approved notification of the interim enhancement of the wages at 30 per cent of basic wage for the working journalists and other newspaper employees with retrospective effect from January 2008.
New Delhi, October 24: Interim enhancement of the wages at 30 per cent of basic wage for the working journalists and other newspaper employees notified with effect from January 8, 2008.
New Delhi, February 28, 2009: Justice G.R. Majithia appointed as Chairman of Wage Boards vide notifications, S.O. 580(E) and S.O. 581 (E) dated 28th February 2009.
New Delhi, June 2010: Term of wage boards extended up to December 31, 2010.
New Delhi, December 31, 2010: Wage Boards submitted their recommendations. The Boards recommended a 35 per cent variable pay for for journalists and non-journalists working in four top categories of newspapers and 20 per cent for others with effect from July 1, 2010. They also proposed an increase in the retirement age by five years to 65 years. Besides, they suggested 100 per cent neutralisation of increase in the cost of living index in dearness allowance. The allowance is recommended to be revised twice a year as against current practice of varying rates of neutralisation for different categories of establishments and quarterly revision. The new basic pay is arrived at by merging the existing basic pay, dearness allowance and 30 per cent interim relief granted earlier.