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Dr KR Shyam Sundar Released a Book on Labour Regulations in India

25th August, 2019

The book co-authored by Dr. K.R. Shyam Sundar, XLRI and Dr. Rahul Sakpal provides critical analyses developments in labour laws reforms and labour statistics during the post-reform period

Dr. K.R. Shyam Sundar, Eminent Labour Economist & Professor, Human Resources Management Area at XLRI - Xavier School of Management todayreleased the book - ‘Labour Laws and Governance Reforms in the Post-Reform Period in India: Missing the Middle Ground?’. He has dedicated the book to his mentor Prof. K.P. Chellaswamy, Retired Professor, Post-Graduate Department of Economics, Guru Nanak College, Madras University.

The book comprises essays providing critical analyses on the developments relating to labour market reforms, annual Union Budgets, labour statistics, etc. during the post-reform period; it also includes a special analytical chapter on the recently published Periodic Labour Force Survey, 2017-18. It is published by a well-known publisher, Synergy Books, India. 

At a formal function held in Chennai, the book was released by Prof. Kamala Sankaran (Vice-Chancellor, Tamil Nadu National Law University, Tiruchirappalli) in the presence of Prof. K. Jothi Sivagnanam (Professor and Head, Department of Economics, Madras University), Prof. K.P. Chellaswamy (Retired Professor, PG Department of Economics, Guru Nanak College, Madras University), Ms. Ramapriya Gopalakrishnan (Eminent Labour Lawyer and an ILO Consultant, Chennai), Dr. Thomas Franco (International Steering Committee Member, Global Labour University), eminent trade union leaders and the authors. Prof. K.P. Chellaswamy was felicitated by his ex-colleagues and students on the occasion.

Talking about the book released, Dr. K. R. Shyam Sundar said, “Ever since the introduction of economic reforms in 1991 in India, employers and critics of labour regulation have argued for the introduction of reforms of the labour laws and the inspection system. They demand codification of labour laws and introduction of employer-friendly reforms in the process. The Central government irrespective of the parties in power is committed to labour laws reforms, more so the NDA government. On the other hand, the trade unions have stridently argued that in the era of globalization job losses have become rampant, the quality of jobs has deteriorated considerably and hence demand that labour laws need to be universalized and be effectively implemented. The NDA government has enacted recently the Wage Code 2019 and three remaining Codes will be taken up for enactment in the forthcoming Parliamentary sessions. There are considerable tensions in the labour market.”

“Our book argues for the need of a strong and sustainable institutional framework at all levels in the industrial relations system, that is built on five core institutional principles, viz. sustained and effective social dialogue, balance between firm’s competitiveness and labour rights, an abiding respect for labour institutions, decent work and employment, and a comprehensive and universal social protection for workers. This, the authors believe, will lead the stakeholders to adopt the currently missing ‘middle ground’ in their reform efforts. In a sense, our book is a celebration and reiteration of the principles and perspectives inherent in ILO’s Conventions and Recommendations and its ‘decent work’ paradigm”, he added.