Fifty Lakh Indian men have lost their jobs between 2016 and 2018, claims the latest State of Working India 2019 report released by the Azim Premji University. The report states that even though the timing of the decline coincides with Demonetisation in November 2016, “no direct causal relationship” can be established based on this trend alone.
The buzz around the unemployment levels during the Modi government started when Somesh Jha’s Business Standard exposé leaked findings of the PLFS (Periodic Labour Force Survey) report which said unemployment rates stood at 6.1% in 2017-2018.
The State of Working India report aimed to provide an update on the employment levels in India between 2016 and 2018 using the Consumer Pyramids Survey of the Centre for Monitoring the Indian Economy (CMIE-CPDX). CMIE-CPDX is a national survey that began in January 2014. It is conducted in three “waves” or rounds throughout the year each comprising of 4 months. The report also stated that the survey covered about 160,000 households and 522,000 individuals.
It further says, “Unemployment, in general, has risen steadily post 2011. Both the PLFS and the CMIE-CPDX report that the overall unemployment rate to be around 6 per cent in 2018, double of what it was in the decade from 2000 to 2011”. It was at 2-3% between 2000-2010 and parked at around 5% in 2015.
What are the other findings of the report?
- India’s educated youth have no jobs.
India is the youngest country in the world but it’s educated youth have no jobs. Most of the ‘unemployed’ range from 20-24 years of age. Urban men of this age constitute 13.5% of the working-age population but 60% of the overall unemployed in the country. Among Urban women, graduates represent 10% of the working-age population and 34% of the overall unemployed. The situation is not any better among the lesser educated and the informal sector for they too have witnessed a severe loss in job opportunities.
- Women are the worst affected
Unemployment rates soar high among women, and their labour force participation rates also, are much lower when compared to men.
How has this fared against BJP’s promises?
- The 2014 BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party) manifesto claims, “Under the broader economic revival, BJP will accord high priority to job creation and opportunities for entrepreneurship.”
- It also claims to connect the youth of the country with job opportunities whereas, in reality, the educated youth of the country are the most affected.
Is Modi led BJP to blame?
The report explicitly states that though the timing of the increase in the unemployment rates is after demonetization, it is not a direct cause of it.
However one of the report’s authors Prof Amit Basole told Scoopwhoop, “Apart from demonetisation and GST, as far as the informal economy is concerned, I don’t see any other reasons.”
Business Today reported that according to the Pre-poll promise of the creation of 1 crore jobs per year, an average of 8.4 lakh jobs should have been created every month. EPFO (Employees’ Provident Fund Organization) data of January 2019 report that only a monthly average of 4.9 lakh jobs have been created.
While jobs have been created during the Modi govt, this has just not been enough against the rise of unemployment and the decrease of workforce strength.