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Wasted labour

Raising minimum wage is no compensation for deeper reforms

TheUniongovernment’sdecisiontoraisetheminimumwagefromRs246adaytoRs350adayforunskilledemployeesmaylookgoodatfirstglance,butitisalreadyevidentthatthisseeminglysubstantial43percentincreasehasnotachievedtheimmediateobjectiveofpersuadingtheLeft-andtheCongress-affiliatedtradeunionstocalloffanall-IndiastrikeonSeptember2.Thisisnosurprisesincetheincreasemeetsonlyabouthalftheunions’demandforaminimumwage—Rs692aday.Ofgreaterconcernisthefactthatthisincreasedoeslittlebywayofraisingthe ...