Context: Mr. Apurva Chandra, Secretary (Labour and Employment) has been elected as the Chairperson of the Governing Body of the International LabourOrganisation (ILO) for the period October 2020- June 2021. 

  • It marks a new chapter in the 100 years of productive relationship between India and ILO.
  • The Governing Body (GB) is the apex executive body of the ILO which decides policies, programmes, agenda, budget and elects the Director-General. 

About ILO

  • The ILO was created in 1919, as part of the Treaty of Versailles that ended World War I, to reflect the belief that universal and lasting peace can be accomplished only if it’s based on social justice. 
  • In 1946, the ILO became a specialized agency of the United Nations.
  • The only tripartite U.N. agency, the ILO brings together governments, employers and workers of member States, to set labour standards, develop policies and devise programmes promoting decent work for all women and men.
  • The ILO has 187 member states: 186 of the 193 UN member states plus the Cook Islands are members of the ILO. 
  • The International Labour Office is the permanent secretariat of the International Labour Organization. 
  • It is the focal point for the International Labour Organization's overall activities, which it prepares under the scrutiny of the Governing Body and under the leadership of the Director-General.
  • The Headquarter of ILO is in Geneva, Switzerland.

India and ILO

  • India is a founder member of ILO.
  • India has ratified six out of the eight core/fundamental International Labour Organisation (ILO) Conventions. These are 
    • Forced Labour Convention, 
    • Abolition of Forced Labour Convention, 
    • Equal Remuneration Convention, 
    • Discrimination (Employment and Occupation) Convention, 1958, 
    • Minimum Age Convention, and 
    • Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention, 1999 
  • India has not ratified the core/fundamental Conventions, namely 
    • Freedom of Association and Protection of the Right to Organise Convention, 1948 (No. 87) and 
    • Right to Organise and Collective Bargaining Convention, 1949 (No. 98).
  • The main reason for non-ratification of ILO Conventions is due to certain privileges given by them to Government servants, namely, to strike, to openly criticize Government policies, to freely accept financial contribution, to freely join foreign organizations etc.
Image source: ILO