Advertisement

Introduction: Towards an Understanding of Informality and Precarity and of Some Institutional Developments and Challenges in Labour Markets and Industrial Relations in a Globalizing India

  • K. R. Shyam SundarEmail author
Chapter

Abstract

India has taken definitive and giant strides away from command economy to a market economy during the last three decades, and these reform processes reflect the principles and precepts underlying the neoliberal model of liberalization, privatization and globalization (LPG). The neoliberal reform agenda has effectively meant state retrenchment and several significant changes, especially in terms of fiscal conservatism and a dominant role for the private sector which have implications for the industrial relations system (IRS) and the labour market. Employers, the international financial institutions and the pro-reform academics have exerted pressure on the governments (at both central and state) to reform labour laws and labour market governance. Reforms concerning the IRS and the labour market have been occurring in India in a variety of ways. While much of the post-reform period has witnessed impressive economic growth rates, the labour market and industrial relations outcomes have been adverse, viz. jobless growth, precarity, informality, labour protests, and so on. Then, it becomes important to understand and analyse precarity and informality, the role of labour institutions and policy dynamics surrounding the reforms, which the chapters in the volume do. This chapter provides a background to the contributions and basically argues that whichever way one looks at the functioning of IRS, there have been significant governance deficits and failures of the institutions.

Keywords

Globalization Labour institutions Labour law reforms India Informality Precarity 

References

  1. Abraham, Vinoj. 2017. “Stagnant Employment Growth: Last Three Years May Have Been the Worst”, Economic and Political Weekly, 52(38): 13–17.Google Scholar
  2. Ahsan, Ahmad and Carmen Pages. 2009. “Are All Labour Regulations Equal? Evidence from Indian Manufacturing”, Journal of Comparative Economics, 37(1): 62–75.Google Scholar
  3. Bardhan, P. 2002. ‘The Political Economy of Reforms in India”. In Facets of the Indian Economy. Rakesh Mohan (ed.). New Delhi: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  4. Besley, T. and R. Burgess. 2004. “Can Regulation Hinder Economic Performance? Evidence from India”, Quarterly Journal of Economics, 119(1): 91–134.Google Scholar
  5. Bhalla, Surjit S., and Tirthatanmoy Das. 2018. All You Wanted to Know about Jobs in India – But Were Afraid to Ask. http://eacpm.gov.in/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/all-you-wanted-to-know-about-employment-in-India-EACPM-omega-July-9-2018.pdf. Accessed on October 21, 2018.
  6. Bhattacharjea, Aditya. 2006. “Labour Market Regulation and Industrial Performance in India: A Critical Review of the Empirical Evidence”, The Indian Journal of Labour Economics, 49(2): 211–232.Google Scholar
  7. Breman, Jan. 2001. “An Informalised Labour System”, Economic and Political Weekly, 36(52), 4804–4821.Google Scholar
  8. Breman, Jan and Linden Marcel van der. 2014. “Informalizing the Economy: The Return of the Social Question at a Global Level”. Development and Change, 45(5): 920–940.Google Scholar
  9. Coates, David. 1999. “Labour Power and International Competitiveness: A Critique of Ruling Orthodoxies”, Socialist Register, 35: 108–141.Google Scholar
  10. Das, Raju J. 2015. “Critical Observations on Neo-liberalism and India’s Economic Policy”, Journal of Contemporary Asia, 45(4): 715–726.Google Scholar
  11. Deakin, Simon and Antara Haldar. 2015. “How Should India Reform Its Labour Laws?”, Economic and Political Weekly, L(12): 48–55.Google Scholar
  12. Deshpande, L.K. 1983. Segmentation of Labour Market: A Case Study of Bombay. First Kunda Datar Memorial Lecture. Pune: Gokhale Institute of Politics and Economics (Mimeo).Google Scholar
  13. Deshpande, L.K. 1992. “Institutional Intervention in the Labour Market in Bombay’s Manufacturing Sector”. In Labour Institutions and Economic Development in India, Papola, T.S. and Rodgers, Gerry (eds.). Geneva: Internal Institute for Labour Studies.Google Scholar
  14. Deshpande, L.K., Alakh N. Sharma, Anup K. Karan, and Sandip Sarkar. 2004. Liberalization and Labour: Labour Flexibility in Indian Manufacturing, Institute for Human Development, New Delhi.Google Scholar
  15. Deshpande, Sudha, Guy Standing and Lalit Deshpande. 1998. Labour Flexibility in a Third World Metropolis, Commonwealth Publishers for Indian Society of Labor Economics, New Delhi.Google Scholar
  16. Economic Times. 2017. “Construction Welfare Cess till December 2016 Totals Rs 31,73 Crores”, Economic Times, March 16.Google Scholar
  17. Fallon, O. and R. Lucas 1991. “The Impact of Changes in Job Security Regulations in India and Zimbabwe”, World Bank Economic Review, 5(3): 395–413.Google Scholar
  18. Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry – All India Organisation of Employers’ (FICCI-AIOE) 2005. “Report of the Core Group on Restructuring Labour Policy”, Reforming the Labour Market, Bibek Debroy and P.D. Kaushik (eds.). New Delhi: Academic Foundation.Google Scholar
  19. Ghosh, Pulak and Soumya Kanti Ghosh. 2018. “Towards a Payroll Reporting in India”, January 15, 2018. http://www.iimb.ac.in/sites/default/files/Payroll%20in%20India-detailed_0.pdf. Accessed on October 21, 2018.
  20. Guha, Atulan. 2009. “Labour Market Flexibility: An Empirical Inquiry into Neoliberal Propositions”, Economic and Political Weekly, 44(19), 45–52.Google Scholar
  21. Harvey, David. 2007. A Brief History of Neoliberalism, Oxford, Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  22. Kannan, K.P. 2017. “India’s Labour Question is also a Social Question: Inequalizing Growth and Increasing Social Inequality under Neoliberal Economic Regimes”, Journal of Social and Economic Development, 19(2): 263–282.Google Scholar
  23. Kannan, K.P. and G. Raveendran. 2009. “Growth sans Employment: A Quarter Century of Jobless Growth in India’s Organised Manufacturing”, Economic and Political Weekly, XLIV (10): 80–91.Google Scholar
  24. Kapoor, Radhicka. 2018. “Rethinking India’s Employment Data Architecture”. Economic and Political Weekly, LIII (40): 14–16.Google Scholar
  25. Katz, Harry C. and Owen Darbishire. 2000. “Converging Divergences: Worldwide Changes in Employment Systems”. Relations Industrielles / Industrial Relations 55(3): 540. Google Scholar
  26. Kaufman, Bruce E. 2007. “The Study of Labour, Employment, and Work Life: Central Features and Core Principle”, Arbetsmarknad & Arbetsliv, 13(3–4): 11–28.Google Scholar
  27. Mehrotra, Santhosh, Jjati Parida, and Sharmistha Sinha 2014. ‘Explaining Employment Trends in the Indian Economy: 1993–94 to 2011–12’, Economic and Political Weekly, XLIX (32): 49–57.Google Scholar
  28. Nagaraj, R. 2018. “Jobs Growth Claims in India: A Fact Check”, Livemint, August 28.Google Scholar
  29. National Commission on Enterprises in Unorganised Sector (NCEUS). 2009. The Challenge of Employment in India: An Informal Economy Perspective, Vol. I – Main Report, NCEUS. New Delhi: Government of India.Google Scholar
  30. Noronha, Ernesto and Premilla D’Cruz. 2009. Employee Identity in Indian Call Centres: The Notion of Professionalism. New Delhi: Response Books.Google Scholar
  31. Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). 1994. OECD Jobs Study. Paris: OECD.Google Scholar
  32. Papola, T.S. 2013. Role of Labour Regulation and Reforms in India. Employment Sector, Employment Working Paper No. 147. Geneva: International Labour Office.Google Scholar
  33. Papola, T.S. and Gerry Rodgers. 1992. “Labour Institutions in India’s Development”. In Labour Institutions and Economic Development in India. T.S. Papola and Gerry Rodgers (eds.). Geneva: International Institute for Labour Studies.Google Scholar
  34. Papola, T.S., Pais, Jesim, and Sahu, Partha Pratim. 2008. Labour Regulation in Indian Industry: Towards a Rational and Equitable Framework, New Delhi: Bookwell.Google Scholar
  35. Patnaik, Prabhat. 2014. “Neoliberalism and Democracy”, Economic and Political Weekly, 49(15): 39–44.Google Scholar
  36. Patwardhan, Vivek. 2016. NEEM Does Not Redeem Confidence. September 24, 2016. http://vivekvsp.com/2016/09/neem-not-redeem-confidence/. Accessed on October 21, 2018.
  37. Rajya Sabha. 2006. Committee on Petitions, Hundred and Twenty Ninth Report, http://164.100.47.5/rs/book2/reports/petition/129threport.htm. Accessed on October 3, 2018.
  38. Ramaswamy, E.A. 1988. Worker Consciousness and Trade Union Response, New Delhi: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  39. Saini, Debi S. 2005. “Honda Motorcycle and Scooters India Limited (HMSI): Management Case”, Vision, 9(4): 71–81.Google Scholar
  40. Saini, Debi S. 2016. A Popular HR Chief Burned to Death: People Management Dynamics at the Indian Subsidiary of Suzuki Ltd. The University of Hong Kong: Asia Case Research Centre.Google Scholar
  41. Sanghi, Sunitha and Sakshi Khurana. Undated. National Employment Policy for India: A Perspective, http://niti.gov.in/content/national-employment-policy-india-perspective. Accessed on October 7, 2018.
  42. Sapkal, R.S. and K.R. Shyam Sundar. 2017. “Determinants of Precarious Employment in India: An Empirical Analysis”, Research in the Sociology of Work. 31: 307–333.Google Scholar
  43. Sarkar, Prabirjit and Simon Deakin. 2011. Indian Labour Law and Its Impact on Unemployment, 1970–2006: A Leximetric Study. https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/35553/. Accessed on September 10, 2018.
  44. Second National Commission on Labour (SNCL). 2002. Report of the National Commission on Labour, Vol.1 (Part I), Ministry of Labour, Government of India.Google Scholar
  45. Sengupta, Anil K. 2003. “Decline of Trade Union Power in India”, The Indian Journal of Labour Economics. 46(4): 685–701.Google Scholar
  46. Shyam Sundar, K.R. 2005. “Role of State in Industrial Relations: From Corporatist to Neo-liberal?”, The Indian Journal of Labour Economics, 48(4): 917–937.Google Scholar
  47. Shyam Sundar, K.R. 2009. Labour Institutions and Labour Reforms in India: The State and the Labour Reforms Debate, Vol. II. Hyderabad: Icfai Press, Hyderabad.Google Scholar
  48. Shyam Sundar, K.R. 2012. “Industrial Violence and Labour Reforms”, Economic and Political Weekly, 47(41): 35–40.Google Scholar
  49. Shyam Sundar, K.R. 2015. Labour Law and Governance Reforms in India – Some Critical Perspectives. New Delhi: Synergy Books India.Google Scholar
  50. Shyam Sundar, K.R. 2017. Industrial Relations in India: Working Towards a Possible Framework for the Future, ACTRAV, Bureau for Workers’ Activities, Geneva: ILO.Google Scholar
  51. Shyam Sundar, K.R. (ed.) 2018a. Contemporary Reforms of Labour Market and Industrial Relations System in India: Ease of Doing Business Versus Labour Rights. New Delhi: Academic Foundation.Google Scholar
  52. Shyam Sundar, K.R. 2018b. “Labour Law Reforms and the Reform Strategy of the Central government at the National Level in the Post-Reform Period: An Overview”. In Contemporary Reforms of Labour Market and Industrial Relations System in India: Ease of Doing Business Versus Labour Rights. K.R. Shyam Sundar (ed.). New Delhi: Academic Foundation.Google Scholar
  53. Shyam Sundar, K.R. 2018c. “Labour Laws and Governance Reforms in Indian States: Informalising Formality!”. In Contemporary Reforms of Labour Market and Industrial Relations System in India: Ease of Doing Business Versus Labour Rights. K.R. Shyam Sundar (ed.). New Delhi: Academic Foundation.Google Scholar
  54. Shyam Sundar, K.R. (forthcoming). Globalization, Ne-liberalism and Labour: Some Varieties of Discourses, Perspectives and Institutional Responses – Essays in Honour of Prof. L.K. Deshpande, Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
  55. Shyam Sundar, K.R. and R.S. Sapkal. 2017. “Labour Laws, Governance Reforms, and Protests: Are They Legitimate?”, Economic and Political Weekly, 52(38): 59–66.Google Scholar
  56. Singh, Ajit. 2018. “Implement Two Laws on Welfare of Construction Workers, Supreme Court Tells Govt”, LiveMint, March 20.Google Scholar
  57. Singhvi, Sanjay (2018). “Changes in Labour Laws: Lessons in History!”. In Contemporary Reforms of Labour Market and Industrial Relations System in India: Ease of Doing Business Versus Labour Rights. K.R. Shyam Sundar (ed.). New Delhi: Academic Foundation.Google Scholar
  58. Standing, Guy. (2003) “Human Security and Social Protection”, In Work and Well-being in the Age of Finance: Muthukadu Papers I, Jayati Ghosh and C.P. Chandrasekhar (eds.). New Delhi: Tulika.Google Scholar
  59. Standing, Guy. 2008. ‘The ILO: An Agency for Globalisation?’ Development and Change 39(3): 355–384.Google Scholar
  60. Sundaram, Ram. 2018. “Ola, Uber Drivers’ Strike Affects Commuters in Chennai, Rides Get Expensive”, Times of India, January 3.Google Scholar
  61. Times of India (ToI). 2017. “Supreme Court to Examine if Uber, Ola Should be Accountable for Driver Offences”, Times of India, October 12.Google Scholar
  62. ToI. (2018). “PM Modi announces hike in incentives of Asha, Anganwadi work,” Times of India, September 11. https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/pm-modi-announces-hike-in-incentives-of-asha-anganwadi-workers/articleshow/65768140.cms. Accessed on October 10, 2018.
  63. Times Now. (2018). “Maharashtra: Ola, Uber Drivers Call off Strike Albeit on Conditions – Here’s What They Were Offered”, Times Now. November 3, https://www.timesnownews.com/india/article/ola-uber-drivers-call-off-strike-albeit-on-conditions-heres-what-they-were-offered-ola-uber-strike-ola-uber-strike-in-mumbai-ola-uber-strike-today-ola/308737. Accessed on November 4, 2018.
  64. Varshney, Ashutosh. 1999. “Mass Politics or Elite Politics? India’s Economic Reforms in Comparative Perspective”. In India in the Era of Economic Reforms, Jeffrey D. Sachs, Ashutosh Varshney, Nirupam Bajpai (eds.). New Delhi: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  65. Veerchand, Jean 2014. Labour: A Heterodox Approach. London: Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
  66. Vyas, Mahesh. 2018a. EPFO Data Is Not Employment Data. 1 May. https://www.cmie.com/kommon/bin/sr.php?kall=warticle&dt=2018-05-01%2009:40:24&msec=436. Accessed on October 21, 2018.
  67. Vyas, Mahesh. 2018b. Employment Growth Rates Fell After 2011–12 According to the Prowess Database. 21 August. https://cmie.com/kommon/bin/sr.php?kall=warticle&dt=2018-08-21%2012:51:29&msec=723. Accessed on October 21, 2018.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Professor, HRM AreaXLRI, Xavier School of ManagementJamshedpurIndia

Personalised recommendations