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In my understanding there is no special exemption given to insurance industry as a whole but if your establishment is providing better medical and other facilities to your employees and their family members than what all are given under the ESI schemes may get exemption from ESI. For that you have to apply and prove to their satisfaction that the benefits to employees are more favourable than that of ESI.
I dont have the details with me but I have seen a letter from ESI department regarding survey of all the insurance companies including LIC and others. This letter was supported by another from Central Govt. So its beyond doubt that insurance companies being in service sector, would be coverable under ESI act if they have the requisite manpower and fulfill other criteria.