The controversial "Bag of Laws" was passed into law by the Turkish Grand National Assembly (TBMM). Many parts of the draft bill were criticized by labour trade unions before it went to parliament. The law has still to be approved by President Abdullah Gül.
The law regulates several kinds of amnesty and social rights. Regarding the amnesty for students, the way was paved for students who were expelled from university to return to the higher education institutions. However, cases related to sentences based on "terror crimes" were not considered.
As far as the victims of the military coups in 1972 and 1980 are concerned, the right to a loan of social security benefits for the time they spent in custody or prison was only granted to the ones who were acquitted at the time. They have to apply within six months.
Workers' protests were considered
Labour unions had protested a number of issues while the draft bill was being discussed in parliament and some of their points were considered by the politicians.
Some provisions of the draft bill were withdrawn such as the "equalization" related to work life, "an extended probation period" and "working from home or a remote place".
Acquited debt for Erbakan
The law provides a reduction of debt for Necmettin Erbakan, former Prime Minister and Chair of the Prosperity Party, in respect of the "Lost Billions" trial. A referring proposal was submitted by State Minister Cevdet Yılmaz and added later on as a provisional article.
Originally, Erbakan had to pay TL 12.5 million (€ 6.25 million) including interest. With the new law, his debt will shrink to approximately TL 1.2 million (€ 600,000). Considering the inflation rate, Erbakan will have to pay TL 1.8 million (€ 900,000) the most.
- Silicosis patients will retire.
- Goods and services for subsidizing the Turkish Coal Mines are exempt from the Public Procurement Law.
- The finances of political parties will be audited by the Constitutional Court. Political parties may incure any sort of expenditures on political activities.
- Tax fees and Social Security premiums that were not paid until 31 December 2010 will be re-configured. The claims will be re-calculated according to the inflation rate.
- Monetary fines and particularly traffic fines below TL 120 (€ 60) will be lifted. Only the cigarette fine is exempt from this regulation.
- A female labourer who gives birth to a premature baby is entitled to use her full maternity leave after the birth including the time she was not able to take off before the birth. Whatever is left from the eight weeks maternity leave before the birth can be added to the eight weeks maternity leave after the birth.
- The statistics to be issued by the trade unions after 30 June 2011 shall be considered.
- The Turkish Banking and Regulation and Supervision Agency (BDDK) and the Capital Markets Board (SPK) are going to be relocated to Istanbul.
- Social aid and solidarity foundations may accept conditional grants to be issued to entitled students of higher education institutions and legal persons until 31 December 2015.
- Taking any kind of animal into forests will be forbidden. (EG/EÖ/VK)