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KCCI urges PM Modi to pay wages of MSME employees from ESIC surplus corpus

Mangaluru, Jun 16 (KNN) The Kanara Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) has urged the Prime Minister Narendra Modi to use surplus corpus of Employees’ State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) to pay the wages of MSMEs employees.

In a letter to the Prime Minister, the President of KCCI, Isaac Vas, apprised the Prime Minister of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) situations due to inevitable COVID-induced lockdown which has affected the economy drastically.

He further said that revenue has been hit hard due to which MSMEs are hugely burdened with fixed costs such as rent payment, security, salaries, and electricity adding, ''In some cases, MSMEs did not even get any revenues during the lockdown period and many MSMEs were not able to pay salaries to their employees.''

He also said that during these tough times, there is a need to implement a suitable solution to raise the sinking industries.

''We understand that the ESIC has a surplus corpus of Rs 60,000 crore collected over the period. These funds primarily belong to employers and employees who have been contributing over the period,” he added.

Informing the Prime Minister that paying from ESIC surplus corpus would greatly benefit employees in earning their livelihood during the lockdown period, he said, ''You may consider paying 50 per cent of the wages during the lockdown period from the corpus. This would also help the industries to retain the manpower against migrating to other places or hometown in search of livelihood.”

The Karnataka government implemented a lockdown on April 23 which later was extended to June 21 in some districts, including Dakshina Kannada.