New Delhi: The Union Home Ministry has asked private security agencies not to lay off guards or deduct their salaries during the 21-day lockdown period announced to combat coronavirus.
In a letter to the Central Association of Private Security Industry, CII, FICCI and ASSOCHAM and others, the Home Ministry said India was facing an unprecedented situation arising out of the COVID-19 outbreak.
This has also affected economic activity and it is possible that private security agencies may be impacted due to the closure of shops, malls and other establishments.
“This is the time for the private security industry to adopt a humane approach and protect its workers and staff members from lay-offs and consequent decrease in earnings.
“I would, therefore, urge the industry for empathy with its workforce, vital to its functioning, and ensure that these workers continue to be treated on duty and paid accordingly,” the ministry said in the letter.
Kunwar Vikram Singh, chairman of the Central Association of Private Security Industry (CAPSI), welcomed the central government’s appeal.
“It is a welcoming decision by the government. It will ensure that private security guards are able to cope with the financial challenges being faced by them due to the coronavirus outbreak,” he told PTI.
Singh said the government’s move will further encourage the private security industry to work with more dedication for the society and the country.
Private security guards are doing a commendable job by putting their lives at risk and trying to contribute to the government’s and all other people’s efforts to ensure safety of others, he said.
The CAPSI had recently sought Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s intervention in saving the livelihood of its members, fearing that private security guards might lose pay and jobs due to the coronavirus outbreak.
With a workforce of over 85 lakh and an annual growth rate of 22 per cent, the private security industry is one of the largest employment-providing sectors in the country and one of the largest contributors to corporate and social security taxes (GST, PF, ESI, income tax etc.), the CAPSI said.
On Tuesday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a 21-day lockdown in the country to combat the coronavirus outbreak. (PTI)
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