During 2017-18, India’s unemployment rose to a 6.1%, highest in 45 years, a report by the Business Standard quoting National Sample Survey Office (NSSO) said. The report has come out at a time when two independent members of the National Statistical Commission (NSC) resigned citing a delay by the Modi government in releasing the reviewed job data.
Unemployment rate at a 45-yr high
The assessment carried out by the NSSO for the period of July 2017 and June 2018 showed that unemployment was the highest at 6.1% since 1972-73. The report further said that this rate was 7.8% for the urban areas and 5.3% in the rural areas. Additionally, the report also highlights that the unemployment rate among the youth is higher than the previous year, as reported by Business Today.
The report said, “For educated rural females, the unemployment rate ranged between 9.7% to 15.2% between 2004-05 to 2011-12, which rose to 17.3 per cent in 2017-18.” For the rural educated males, the unemployment stood at 10.5% in 2017-18. This was about 6-7 per cent higher than what was between 2004-05 and 2011-12 which then stood at 3.5-4.4%. For female youth in rural areas, the unemployment rate for 2017-18 was 13.6% as compared to 4.8% in 2011-12.
The NSSO’s data is very significant because, after PM Modi’s announcement in November 2016, which rendered the currency note of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 illegal, this is the first comprehensive report on the country’s employment situation. While the country’s economy is expanding by over 7% every year. However, the uneven growth has not paved any path for India’s youth. Notably, as per a report by Centre For Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE), labour statistics showed continuous deterioration in the labour markets exception being the September month of 2018. In the month of October 2018, the unemployment rate rose to 6.9%, which was the worst in the last two years.
The number of people employed in October 2018, was 397 million, which was 10 million lesser than the number in October 2017. Labour market showed a slight improvement in the month of September but the effect was negated by the dip in October.
Only 39.5 % of the adult population was employed in October 2018, the lowest in the last two years.
Two independent members of NSC resign
On January 29, Tuesday, two independent members of the National Statistical Commission (NSC) resigned over alleged disagreements with the Narendra Modi government. According to the reports, the two resigned from the commission over government’s failure to publish a report on employment that had been prepared last month.
After the resignation of P.C. Mohanan, who was also the commission’s acting chairperson and J.V. Meenakshi, the commission is now left with only two members – chief statistician Pravin Srivastava and Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant.
“The two members have resigned from the National Statistical Commission and tendered their resignation on January 28,” an official said, as reported by News18.
The Logical Indian Take
PM Modi promised to generate jobs for youths if brought to power. But the dismal record of Job being generated and people getting unemployed is scary, to say the least. The government needs to focus on creating more jobs for the unemployed youth and media should give more attention to report on unemployment. This country needs a serious debate on unemployment rather than on Sabarimala and Ayodhya issue.