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Sharad Pawar heads GoM on manufacturing policy

The policy which was placed before the Cabinet on September 15 could not be cleared in the wake of differences among ministries of environment, labour and commerce & industry.

twitter-logo PTI   New Delhi     Last Updated: September 20, 2011  | 16:54 IST

A group of ministers, headed by Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, has been formed to resolve inter-ministerial differences stalling the national manufacturing policy, which aims at giving a boost to the sector.

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The policy which was placed before the Cabinet on September 15 could not be cleared in the wake of differences among ministries of environment, labour and commerce & industry on the issues of relaxing green and labour laws in the proposed mega-industrial enclaves.

The manufacturing policy being piloted by the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) aims at creating 220 million jobs in the next 15 years and taking the share of the sector in GDP to 25 per cent by 2020 from 15-16 per cent at present.

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Both Environment Minister Jayanthi Natarajan and Labour Minister Mallikarjun Kharge did not support the draft policy put up before the Cabinet by Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma, sources said.

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Besides Pawar, the GoM would comprise Natarajan, Kharge, Sharma, Law Minister Salman Khurshid and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Minister Virbhadra Singh.

The environment minister has raised objections to the DIPP proposal, which says only hazardous units in the National Investment and Manufacturing Zones (NMIZs) should be subjected to Environment Impact Assessment (EIA).

"But they (environment ministry) want that each individual unit should be governed by EIA, irrespective of being hazardous or not," an official said.

The Labour Ministry does not want that a single entity, as proposed in the draft policy, to take over the statutory functions like provident fund, medical claim and insurance of the small and medium enterprises.

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