Ahead of a key national conference on MNREGA, INTUC has sought party Vice-President Rahul Gandhi's intervention to bring the country's traditional industrial workforce under the ambit of the rural job scheme.
INTUC national Vice-President R Chandrasekharan said the people working in traditional industrial sectors like cashew, coir, handloom, clay manufacturing, among others, were getting "very meagre wages and their social security was not fully covered".
"To protect such industries, MNREGA (Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act) should be invested in productive sectors like traditional industries. MNREGA wages should be given as an additional wage support for all traditional workers," Chandrasekharan, who is also the state president of Indian National Trade Union Congress, said.
He said the issue was raised before Rahul Gandhi during an interactive meeting this week.
Gandhi acknowledged the importance of workforce in the traditional sectors in the country and assured that the party would establish strong relations with the INTUC to study their problems and find a solution, Chandrasekharan said.
The INTUC's demand came ahead of the ninth 'MNREGA Diwas Sammelan' to be held here tomorrow.
Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh will inaugurate the meet. Last year, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi had attended the event, but they will not be present this year.