Karnataka guards will work less, earn more

The Karnataka State government has revised the minimum pay for security guards by pegging it at Rs 10,800 per month (for an 8-hour work schedule per day)! According to the gazette notification issued recently, in Zone I cities such as Bengaluru, an ordinary security guard will now be entitled to be paid Rs 415 per day while a head guard is supposed to get Rs 426 per day (monthly salary being Rs 11,086). A security inspector is to be paid Rs 437 per day (Rs 11,372 per month) while a security supervisor will get Rs 475 per day (Rs 12,360 per month).

The labour department which has notified the revision has asked the affected people to send their objections, suggestions on the proposed revision in two months from the notification date that is September 24. Once the state government comes forward with a final notification, it will definitely push up the payments made towards security-related logistics by clients, especially residential complexes and business establishments.

In the state, four lakh people are employed by security services agencies and a majority of them (70 per cent) are employed in the Bengaluru. IT companies in the city hire security men in large numbers and the next come other industrial establishments and residential complexes. With a spate of security-related issues, there is a great demand for security guards. Now, with the proposal for revised pay, the demand may go up. Welcoming the move, the President of the Karnataka Security Services Association (KSSA) C N Patil said it was a long pending demand by the association. “The previous wage fixed by the government was Rs 7,100. In neighbouring states such as Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra and others, the minimum wage fixed was Rs 10,000 and due to these factors, people interested in working in security services were moving to other states and Karnataka was not their choice for a long time. But the scenario will change in the coming days. Our association had given a requisition to the labour minister and other officials concerned seeking a hike in the minimum wage for security guards. Increased wage will not be an issue for IT companies but some smaller establishments might have some reservations.”

The KSSA President said the majority of the people employed in security services were from the north and north eastern states such as Assam, Bihar, Orissa and others. “In addition to the revised wage, an employee is entitled to get ESI, PF, holidays and other benefits. The security guard is supposed to work for eight hours every day as per rules. The rule also stipulates that people between the age of 18 and 58 can work in security services,” said Patil. At present, 360 agencies have registered with them.