New Delhi: The Union Cabinet on Thursday gave its approval to amend the Maternity Benefit Act, 1961, which will allow the Centre to revise the medical bonus from time to time payable under the Act.
After the amendment, Government will have the revision power subject to the maximum limit not being more than Rs 20,000.
The amendment decision was taken considering that the existing ceiling of Rs 250 as Maternity Bonus under Maternity Benefit Act, 1961 was inadequate given the present economic situation.
Hence, there is an urgent need to increase the amount to Rs 1000 so that it could be a source of financial support as far as Maternity Benefit Act are concerned.
The Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Bill 2006 will be introduced in the Parliament during the Budget Session in 2007.
The Union Cabinet at its meeting here on Thursday also gave a green signal for signing of the United Nations Convention on Jurisdictional Immunities of States and their Property.
The Convention has been adopted after extensive consideration in the International Law Commission and the Legal Committee of the United Nations General Assembly over a period of several years.
Adoption of domestic Legislation whereby the courts would decide any claims for immunity, and would do away with the need to approach the Central Government for permission in each case.
This would also avoid the government becoming party to litigation proceedings when permission to sue is refused or is delayed.
Once approved, the instrument of Full Powers will be obtained authorizing the country’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations to sign the Convention.
The Cabinet also approved implementation of the Self Employment Scheme for Rehabilitation of Manual Scavengers as a Central Sector Scheme.
This decision could benefit over 3,42,468 manual scavengers and their dependents.