Addressing a rally of unemployed youths, people with high hopes and farmers with huge expectations, on November 2013, in Uttar Pradesh the Prime Ministerial candidate of Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) Narendra Modi said, “If BJP comes to power, it will provide one crore jobs which the UPA ( Congress) government couldn’t do despite announcing it before the last Lok Sabha polls.”
Since 2014, the BJP government or famously known as Modi government came up with various schemes to boost the job sectors such as Make in India, Mudra Loan Scheme, Swach Bharat, Digital India, Skill India and many others. The objective of all these schemes was to create jobs either directly or indirectly and to boost the employment in India.
The impact of above-mentioned initiatives has been more of a mirage than reality. LocalCircles (An online community social media platform) came up with a survey about the stint of Modi government for last four years. The ministry of Human Resource and Development got 2.70 stars and Ministry of Labour and Employment got 2.10 stars out of five*.
The survey said, “With the rate of unemployment being high, citizen rating of the Labour & Employment ministry was almost obvious. Although the extension of maternity leaves was received well by the citizens, not enough new jobs being created for the youth was a major point of discontent among citizens.”
The Current Scenario
The promise of 10 million jobs brought cheers and tears in the eyes of unemployed people, but the current scenario paints a different picture altogether.
The Managing Director of Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE), Mahesh Vyas, a Mumbai based business and economic database research company, wrote an article in February 2018 titled, ‘Sharp Increase in Unemployment Rate.’ The article highlighted that the unemployment reached a 71 week high in the week ended February 25, 2018.
According to the CMIE’s the unemployment rate has been rising steadily since July 2017 and reached its lowest level of 3.4 percent. The unemployment rate had been falling steeply and almost steadily post demonetisation.
The number of unemployed persons touched 31 million in February 2018. This is the highest count of unemployed since October 2016.
In his article, Vyas states, “The labour force shrunk by 30 million - from about 450 million before demonetisation to close to 420 million within six months of demonetisation. Now, more than a year later, we see a labour force that is close to 430 million. The labour force has still not recovered entirely.”
Demonetization itself cost 1.5 million jobs in first four months of the year 2017, according to the CMIE survey.
Are jobs really there?
According to an estimate, around 17 million people enter the workforce every year, and only about 5.5 million jobs are being generated.
However, job employment in some specific segments such as manufacturing, construction, trade, transport, education, health, accommodation & restaurants and IT/BPO had seen an upswing trend in the country. According to the Ministry of Labour and Employment, a total of 1.36 lakhs of jobs were created from July 2017 to September 2017.
In February 2018, the Indian Railways also planned a drive to hire 90000 employees in different categories. While Shivraj Singh Chauhan, Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh announced that the state would abolish contractual workers and it’ll create 1 lakh jobs.
Addressing the audience at the UP Investors Summit 2018 in the state capital Lucknow the Chief Minister, Yogi Adityanath said, “Our target is to create 40 lakh new job opportunities in UP in the next three years.”
IT and Law Minister, Ravi Shankar Prasad, while highlighting the achievement of Ministry of Electronics and IT last year in May said that the IT industry would create 25-30 lakh jobs by the year 2025. The minister also mentioned that in the previous three years the Indian IT companies had added six lakh jobs.
While the government is doing their bit to fulfil the promises but the upcoming demand is way beyond than the current supply. International Labour Organisation (ILO) released World Employment and Social Outlook trends for the year 2018.
The report suggests that the number of jobless in the country will increase to 18.3 million in 2018 and 18.9 million in 2019, against 18.3 million in 2017. According to ILO’s last year’s report, the body had forecast that the number of unemployed in the country is expected to be 18 million in 2018 and had estimated the unemployment figure for 2017 at 17.8 million. So, the number of unemployed persons in India in 2017 was 0.5 million more than ILO’s previous year estimates.
To maintain its employment rate, India has to create 8.1 million jobs a year said a World Bank report in April 2018. The working age of the country is increased by 1.3 million people, and for that, it should create 8.1 million jobs to maintain the employment rate, which has been declining based on employment data analyzed from 2005 to 2015, largely due to women leaving the job market, added the report.
Ministers, do the math
Media report suggests that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has asked his team to do the math and come out with numbers on how many jobs the BJP government has generated in the last four years. The ministries have been advised to present a detail note on the scheme and plans commenced by them.
The report statistics from the government's labour bureau show that job growth plummeted in key sectors to its lowest levels in eight years in calendar years 2015 and 2016 at 1.55 lakh and 2.31 lakh, respectively, compared with a high of over 10 lakh new jobs created in 2009 when the Manmohan Singh-led UPA was in office.
It looks like a good step from the government that the ministries are doing their work calculation of last four years. But if the intention is to source the data for marketing and promotions in order to celebrate the four years of Modi government rather than doing an in-depth analysis of what is the road ahead it may make the situation worse for the job seekers.
Click on the image to enlarge
As BJP Government is completing its 4th year of governance, this is the second article of the five parts series that discusses the current scenario of the Indian government and how impactful they have been. Watch this space for the next article!
*The Local Circles ratings were an aggregate of over 10000 ratings submitted by citizens on Local Circles.
Image source: amarujala.com: