Functions of BOCW Welfare Board

BOCW Welfare Board
Shivam Narwal
| Updated: Mar 16, 2023 | Category: BOCW

Construction work is considered one of the most hazardous and labour-intensive occupations in the world. The Building and Other Construction Workers’ (BOCW) Act was enacted in India in 1996 to regulate the safety, health, and welfare of workers in the construction industry. The BOCW Welfare Board was set up under this Act to implement welfare measures for construction workers and their families. In this blog post, we will discuss the functions of the BOCW Welfare Board in detail.

Definition of BOCW Welfare Board:

The BOCW Welfare Board is a statutory body set up under the BOCW Act to ensure the welfare of workers engaged in building and other construction work. The Board is responsible for implementing various welfare measures for the benefit of construction workers and their families.

Importance of BOCW Welfare Board:

The BOCW Welfare Board plays a crucial role in improving the living and working conditions of construction workers. As construction work involves high risk and is often carried out in hazardous conditions, workers are vulnerable to accidents, injuries, and health issues. The Board’s interventions aim to provide safety, health, education, and financial security to workers and their families.

Overview of the functions of BOCW Welfare Board:

The BOCW Welfare Board performs various functions, including:

  1. Registration of workers: The Board facilitates the registration of construction workers under the BOCW Act. This enables workers to access welfare measures and benefits provided by the Board.
  2. Collection and disbursement of funds: The Board collects funds through a cess levied on construction projects and other sources. These funds are then used to provide welfare measures to workers and their families.
  3. Welfare measures for workers: The Board provides various welfare measures, including health and safety measures, education and skill development initiatives, housing and sanitation facilities, and financial assistance and insurance schemes.
  4. Monitoring and enforcement: The Board monitors compliance with the BOCW Act and welfare measures and has the power to take action against non-compliant employers.
  5. Grievance redressal: The Board provides mechanisms for addressing worker grievances and resolving disputes related to welfare measures.

Registration of Workers:

One of the key functions of the BOCW Welfare Board is to facilitate the registration of construction workers under the BOCW Act. Here are some details about the process and benefits of registration, as well as the Board’s role in facilitating registration:

  1. Process of registering workers under the BOCW Act:
    Construction workers who are engaged in building and other construction work are eligible to register under the BOCW Act. The registration process is simple and can be completed by submitting the necessary documents to the BOCW Welfare Board. The required documents may include proof of identity, address proof, and proof of employment in the construction sector.
  2. Benefits of registration for workers and employers:
    Registration under the BOCW Act provides various benefits to both workers and employers. For workers, registration enables them to access various welfare measures provided by the Board, such as health and safety measures, education and skill development initiatives, housing and sanitation facilities, and financial assistance and insurance schemes. For employers, registration of their workers helps them comply with the BOCW Act and avoid penalties for non-compliance.
  3. Role of BOCW Welfare Board in facilitating registration:
    The BOCW Welfare Board plays a vital role in facilitating the registration of construction workers under the BOCW Act. The Board conducts awareness programs and outreach activities to inform workers about the benefits of registration and the registration process. The Board also maintains a register of registered workers and provides them with identity cards, which can be used to avail of various welfare measures provided by the Board.

Collection and Disbursement of Funds:

The BOCW Welfare Board is responsible for collecting and managing funds to provide various welfare measures for construction workers. Here are some details about the sources of funds, collection and management of funds, and disbursement of funds for welfare measures:

  1. Sources of funds for BOCW Welfare Board:
    The BOCW Welfare Board collects funds from various sources, including a cess levied on construction projects, penalties imposed for non-compliance with the BOCW Act, and contributions from employers and workers. The cess levied on construction projects is the primary source of funds for the Board, and the rate of cess is determined by the government from time to time.
  2. Collection and management of funds by the Board:
    The BOCW Welfare Board collects funds from various sources and manages them efficiently to ensure their optimal utilization for the welfare of construction workers. The Board maintains a separate fund for the collection and management of funds, which is audited by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India[1] (CAG) annually.
  3. Disbursement of funds for various welfare measures:
    The BOCW Welfare Board disburses funds collected from various sources for various welfare measures for construction workers. These measures include health and safety measures, education and skill development initiatives, housing and sanitation facilities, and financial assistance and insurance schemes. The Board ensures that funds are disbursed efficiently and effectively to ensure maximum benefit to construction workers.

Welfare Measures for Workers:

The BOCW Welfare Board provides various welfare measures for construction workers and their families to improve their living standards and quality of life. Here are some of the welfare measures provided by the Board:

  1. Health and safety measures:
    The Board provides various health and safety measures to ensure that construction workers work in a safe and healthy environment. These measures include the provision of personal protective equipment, medical check-ups, and health insurance schemes. The Board also conducts awareness programs and outreach activities to educate workers about the importance of health and safety measures.
  2. Education and skill development initiatives:
    The Board provides various education and skill development initiatives to help construction workers acquire new skills and enhance their employability. These initiatives include vocational training programs, apprenticeship schemes, and scholarships for the education of workers’ children. The Board also conducts awareness programs and outreach activities to educate workers about the importance of education and skill development.
  3. Housing and sanitation facilities:
    The Board provides various housing and sanitation facilities to improve the living conditions of construction workers and their families. These facilities include the construction of housing complexes, toilets, and bathing facilities. The Board also provides financial assistance for the repair and renovation of workers’ houses.
  4. Financial assistance and insurance schemes:
    The Board provides various financial assistance and insurance schemes to support construction workers and their families during times of financial distress. These schemes include the provision of pension schemes, maternity benefits, disability benefits, and death benefits. The Board also provides financial assistance for the education of workers’ children.

Monitoring and Enforcement:

The BOCW Welfare Board is responsible for monitoring and enforcing compliance with the BOCW Act and various welfare measures for construction workers. Here are some details about the Board’s role in monitoring and enforcing compliance:

  1. Monitoring compliance with BOCW Act and welfare measures:
    The Board is responsible for monitoring compliance with the provisions of the BOCW Act and various welfare measures for construction workers. The Board conducts inspections and audits to ensure that employers and workers comply with the Act’s provisions and welfare measures. The Board also maintains records of registered workers, employers, and projects to monitor compliance.
  2. Powers and responsibilities of BOCW Welfare Board:
    The Board has various powers and responsibilities to ensure compliance with the BOCW Act and welfare measures. These powers and responsibilities include:
    • Registering construction workers and employers under the Act
    • Collecting and managing funds for welfare measures
    • Disbursing funds for welfare measures
    • Conducting inspections and audits to monitor compliance.
    • Imposing penalties for non-compliance
    • Educating workers and employers about the Act’s provisions and welfare measures
  3. Penalties for non-compliance:
    The Board has the power to impose penalties on employers and workers for non-compliance with the BOCW Act and welfare measures. The penalties may include fines, imprisonment, and suspension or cancellation of registration. The Board may also initiate legal proceedings against non-compliant employers and workers.

Grievance Redressal:

Grievance redressal is an important function of the BOCW Welfare Board, as it provides a mechanism for construction workers to voice their concerns and resolve their issues. Here are some details about the grievance redressal mechanisms, the Board’s role, and the importance of timely resolution of grievances:

  1. Mechanisms for addressing worker grievances:
    The BOCW Act provides for various mechanisms for addressing worker grievances. Workers can file complaints with the BOCW Welfare Board, Labor Commissioner, or other appropriate authorities. Workers can also approach the Board’s helpdesk, which provides information and assistance related to the Act’s provisions and welfare measures. The Board also conducts awareness programs and outreach activities to educate workers about their rights and the grievance redressal mechanisms.
  2. Role of BOCW Welfare Board in grievance redressal:
    The BOCW Welfare Board plays an important role in addressing worker grievances. The Board receives complaints from workers and initiates investigations to resolve the issues. The Board also conducts conciliation meetings between workers and employers to resolve disputes. The Board has the power to impose penalties on employers for non-compliance with the Act’s provisions and welfare measures. The Board also maintains a record of complaints and their resolution for monitoring and reporting purposes.
  3. Importance of timely resolution of grievances:
    The timely resolution of grievances is important for the welfare of construction workers. Delayed resolution of grievances can cause financial and emotional distress to workers and their families. Timely resolution of grievances also helps to maintain a harmonious relationship between workers and employers, which is essential for the smooth functioning of the construction industry.

Conclusion

The Building and Other Construction Workers Welfare Board in India plays a crucial role in ensuring the welfare of construction workers. Through its various functions, the Board has improved the health and safety of workers, provided education and skill development opportunities, and offered financial assistance and insurance schemes. However, more work needs to be done to further improve the welfare of these workers. It is essential that the Board continues to prioritize the welfare of construction workers, who are essential to the construction industry and contribute significantly to India’s economic growth.

Also Read: Welfare Measures for Building Construction Workers Under BOCW in India

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Shivam Narwal

Shivam Narwal, a motivated final year BBA LLB law student at Chandigarh University, has started his legal career at Swarit Advisors as a legal researcher. With a strong focus on thorough and accurate research, Shivam is dedicated to delivering exceptional results. Throughout his studies, he has shown a deep understanding of the legal system and a drive to excel in the field of Law. 

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