Jaipur. In a significant move to address crucial social and economic issues, the Rajasthan government is poised to enact few groundbreaking legislations during the ongoing monsoon session, what is widely expected to be the last Assembly session before the State goes for polls in less than four months. Most significant of all, is the Minimum Guaranteed Income Bill which would be, for the first time in the country, providing legislative backing for urban employment guarantee schemes and also makes pension a legal right with the provision of 15% annual increment.
Other bills include The Rajasthan Public Examination (Measures for Prevention of Unfair Means in Recruitment) (Amendment) Bill, 2023, which was tabled in the House recently, that proposes to increase punishment for the crime from the earlier five to 10 years to jail for 10 years and up to life imprisonment.
The Platform-based Gig Workers Registration and Welfare Bill aims to extend social security to the unorganized workforce engaged in the doorstep deliveries and cab driving.
The government is also poised to set up a commission to settle farmers' loan disputes, and establish stricter penalties for paper leaks and copying. These bills will position Rajasthan as a pioneer in implementing comprehensive legislation for the welfare of its citizens.
In a bid to maintain the integrity and transparency of recruitment exams, the Rajasthan government intends to pass the Paper Leaks and Copying Prevention Bill. This bill which was tabled on July 18, aims to curb the rampant issue of paper leaks and cheating in government recruitment tests. The proposed bill seeks to elevate the punishment for these offenses from the current maximum of 10 years to life imprisonment.
The decision to impose life imprisonment demonstrates the government's determination to eradicate malpractices and create a level playing field for all aspiring candidates. The bill emphasizes the importance of transparency in competitive exams and aims to restore public trust in the selection process.
Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot recently directed the chief secretary to collaborate with relevant stakeholders, including the Rajasthan Public Service Commission and the Department of Personnel, to devise a robust and transparent examination process. The proposed bill reflects the government's commitment to ensuring fairness, accountability, and meritocracy in recruitment exams.
" I am delighted to see the Rajasthan government taking a strong stance against paper leaks through the proposed bill. As a qualified and unemployed youth, I believe that the introduction of life imprisonment as the maximum punishment sends a powerful message to deter such malpractices. This step will help restore faith in the examination system and ensure a fair and transparent selection process for all aspiring candidates" says Surbhi Jain, an RJS aspirant in Udaipur.
To address the concerns and protect the rights of gig workers, the Rajasthan government has proposed the Platform-based Gig Workers Registration and Welfare Bill. This pioneering legislation aims to empower and secure social security for gig workers employed by platforms like Ola, Uber, Swiggy, Zomato, and Amazon.
The bill guarantees important rights for gig workers, including registration with the Gig Workers Welfare Board, access to grievance redressal mechanisms, and the ability to participate in decision-making processes. The Gig Workers Welfare Board, chaired by the state's labor minister, will be responsible for registration, implementing social security schemes, and engaging with trade unions to ensure comprehensive benefits and welfare for gig workers.
Nagendra Meena, a Swiggy partner expresses joy on the proposed bill. Speaking to The Mooknayak , Meena says, " the bill acknowledges the challenges faced by gig workers like myself and provides us with important rights and social security. It gives us a sense of inclusion and protection, ensuring that our contributions to the economy are recognized and valued."
Recognizing the challenges faced by farmers regarding loan disputes, the Rajasthan government has proposed the formation of a Commission for Farmers. Under the proposed Rajasthan Farmers’ Debt Relief Bill, a Debt Relief Commission will be formed which will be headed by a retired high court judge
The Rajasthan government is mulling a law and setting up of a Commission to provide relief to debt-ridden farmers and to stop auctioning of their land, a senior government official said.
This commission, which will be headed by a retired High Court judge, aims to provide an efficient platform for farmers to resolve their loan-related issues effectively.
The commission will play a vital role in ensuring fair and equitable solutions for farmers who have been burdened by debt. By facilitating the resolution of disputes, it seeks to prevent the auctioning of lands and alleviate the financial strain faced by small and marginal farmers, landless laborers, and farmers from economically weaker sections of society.
Through the commission, farmers will have the opportunity to present their cases and seek appropriate resolutions, allowing them to regain their financial stability and protect their livelihoods.
As per various studies, Indian farmers are in a state of distress and this is manifested by the increasing number of farmer suicides. Between 1995 and 2012, a total of 28,4673 farmers committed suicide in India.
Among all the states in India, Rajasthan has one of the lowest farmer suicide rates. Between 2010 and 2012, there were 3.6 farmer suicides per 1000 population. The corresponding figure for all India during the same period was 15 per 1000 population (Mishra, 2014).
The Rajasthan government aims to provide comprehensive social security to every resident of the state by enacting the Minimum Guaranteed Income Bill. This bill aligns with the constitutional principle of ensuring a dignified life for all individuals. Under this legislation, the government will implement a minimum income guarantee scheme, offering financial stability to those in need. With this Act, all families in the state will be able to get employment guarantee of 125 days every year, and a minimum pension of ₹1,000 per month in case of aged /disabled/single women.
The state already demonstrates its commitment to social security through various schemes, and this bill will further strengthen the support system. By ensuring minimum income to every person, the government aims to alleviate poverty, reduce inequality, and enhance the overall well-being of the population. The bill has received cabinet approval and will be presented during the current assembly session.
The bill is part of Gehlot’s efforts to provide social security to citizens of the state. This year, the CM aggressively ran Inflation Relief Camps ( Mahangayi Rahat Camp) in which people were provided registration for getting cooking gas cylinder for ₹500 every month, up to 100 units of free electricity for domestic consumers 200 units for agriculture connections, free ration kits under the National Food Security Act and free medical treatment of up to ₹25 lakh under the state’s Chiranjeevi Health Insurance scheme.