Parliament Clears Landmark bill raising maternity leave to 26 weeks

Good news for Women Working in the organised sector is here. They will now be entitled to paid maternity leave of 26 weeks, which was earlier 12 weeks.

The parliament yesterday passed a bill in the regard that will benefit over 1.8 million Indian women.

The new law will be applied to all the organisation employing 10 or more people and the entitlement will be for only up to first two children. For the third child, the entitlement will be for only 12 weeks.

The Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Bill, 2016 was passed by the Lok Sabha Today; Months after the Rajya Sabha approved the measure that takes India to the third position in terms of the number of weeks for maternity leave after Canada and Norway.
Labour Minister Bandaru Dattatreya said while framing the rules, “This is my humble gift to women, a day after the world celebrated the International Women’s Day”.
The Maternity Benefit Act, 1961, protects the employment of women during the time of her maternity and entitles her full paid absence from work, to take care of her child.
The Bill also requires every establishment with 50 or more employees to provide creche facilities within a prescribed distance. The woman will be allowed four visits to the creche in a day. This will include her interval for rest.

The Bill has also provided the provision under which the employer can permit a woman to work from home. This option can be availed of, after the period of maternity leave, for a duration that is mutually decided by the employer and the woman.

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