NEW DELHI (INDIA): The Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi has lauded the passage of Maternity Benefit Amendment Bill in the Lok Sabha and has called it a landmark moment in the efforts towards women-led development.nn?Passage of the Maternity Benefit Amendment Bill in the Lok Sabha is a landmark moment in our efforts towards women-led development.nnMaternity Benefit Amendment Bill ensures better health and wellbeing of the mother and child. Increase in maternity leave is a welcome provision.nnEmployment of women is protected thanks to Maternity Benefit Amendment Bill. Mandatory provision of crèche in offices is laudable.?, the Prime Minister said.nnLok Sabha Passes Maternity Benefits (Amendment) Bill, 2016nnLok Sabha passed today on 9th March, 2017 the Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Bill, 2016 which inter-alia includes increasing maternity benefit to woman covered under the Maternity Benefit Act, 1961 from 12 weeks to 26 weeks up to two surviving children in order to allow the mother to take care of the child during his/her most formative stage, providing maternity benefit of 12 weeks to Commissioning mother and Adopting mother, facilitate ?work from home? to a mother with mutual consent of the employee and the employer, making mandatory in respect of establishment having fifty or more employees , to have the facility of crèche either individually or as a shared common facility within such distance as may be prescribed by rules & also to allow four visits to the crèche by the woman daily, including the interval for rest allowed to her and every establishment to intimate in writing and electronically to every woman at the time of her initial appointment about the benefits available under the Act.nnThe bill was presented in the Lok Sabha by the Minister of State (IC) for Labour and Employment,Bandaru Dattatreya.nnThe Maternity Benefit(Amendment) Bill, 2016 has already been passed by the Rajya Sabha on 11th August,2016. These changes will have major impact on the health, well-being and growth of the future generation in the Country. It will have positive impact on women?s participation in labour force and will improve the work- life balance of the women workers. The Maternity Benefits (Amendment) Act, 2016 will come into the force only after the President?s assent.