Delhi News

Gig workers in Karnataka to get free Rs 4-lakh accidental and life insurance cover


In good news for gig workers, the Karnataka government has announced a free accidental and life insurance cover worth Rs 4 lakh, for which it will entirely bear the cost of the annual premium.

Those employed as full-time or part-time delivery personnel for Swiggy, Zomato, Amazon etc are set to benefit from the insurance cover announced by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah in the budget presented on Friday. The cover comprises life insurance and accidental insurance of Rs 2 lakh each.

According to Labour Minister Santosh Lad, an association of gig workers had submitted a request to the labour department to provide accidental cover for all the gig workers in the state, where there are over 2-4 lakh of them, as per estimates.

Although the cost allocation is not clear, Lad said that more benefits were in the pipeline for the unorganised sector. “The gig workers’ association held a meeting with us requesting accidental cover. The e-commerce companies mostly do not cover the gig workers for accidental insurance. We are thinking of getting these gig workers a revenue model by constituting a transport board. As of now, the government has decided to provide them with an accidental cover,” he said.

B Hariprasad, a delivery agent with a food aggregator, was cautious in welcoming the announcement. “We have a health insurance cover of up to Rs 1 lakh. In case of any fatalities, our family is entitled to a sum of Rs 5 lakh. Even the premium is borne by the company. Although I haven’t used the health cover provided by the company yet, I definitely welcome the government’s move to give the accidental cover. However, it is to be seen whether the government consistently funds this scheme. Until then I would welcome this with a pinch of salt,” he said.

Anichur Haque, another delivery partner, said, “We already have a health insurance scheme of up to Rs 1 lakh, where we will be reimbursed for medical emergencies. But I will wait and watch how the government’s cover is different from that of the company’s and then apply.”

Swiggy has on its blog mentioned its “strong insurance benefits” for its delivery partners and their dependents. The food aggregator also has a claim status tracking function to help the delivery partners avail of insurance claims fast and without hassles. The company provides visibility to network hospitals and gives the option to partners to directly edit details. It has also launched a 24×7 helpline for queries about moving from physical document submission to online submission.

Zomato last year launched a pilot initiative to give its delivery partners and their dependents a health insurance cover of Rs 3 lakh.


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