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The central government is readying the blueprint for a social security scheme that is specifically aimed as a safety net for workers in the informal labour sector. The draft social security code, drafted by the Ministry of Labour & Employment, aims for universal coverage that includes those who are outside the ambit of the EPFO and the ESIC. The scheme envisages mandatory pension, insurance against disability and death, and maternity coverage, alongside optional medical and unemployment coverage. Consultations are on with states to bring them on board for part-financing the scheme, which could be launched later this year around the time of key state elections and ahead of the upcoming 2019 general polls.

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