Governments, unjustifiably or otherwise, are being charged with under-performance on various counts. Failure to create jobs in the face of mounting numbers of educated youth year after year has been dominating the many accusations facing the incumbent government at the Centre whose top brass is busy with campaigning during the weeks preceding the polls to elect members of the country’s 17th Parliament, beginning its five-year term in June. Nearly, one million youth, a fraction of the total number to be employed in various sectors of the economy coming out of the country’s educational institutions, including Universities (nearly 900), institutes of technology (15), polytechnics, industrial training institutes and so on are the target for the administration and private sector establishments to be addressed. The issue of wages, reasonably consistent with the work that goes with the jobs follows like one’s shadow. The demand for higher wages is akin to the endless screw, pitching the employer and the employee in eternally opposite camps.
Whether one likes it or not, one accepts it or not, half the number of jobs in the government are only for the all-too-familiar privileged section of the country’s population. Voices are being raised to extend this privilege in the country’s private sector’s organised industrial establishments. Landing a job in either sector shall be overly dependent on the caste factor overriding the competence factor in days ahead. Even as anyone in the hunt for jobs is understandably focussed on the pay to begin with and subsequently on prospects of promotion and post-retirement benefits, particularly pension. The national job scenario is marked by mind-boggling dimensions. India will witness an addition of 11.5 lakh jobs in the first half of 2019-20 itself according to a report from knowledgeable circles. Almost half this number is accounted for organised sector comprising mainly retailing, logistics, Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) and consumer durables alone. Further, the country’s agriculture sector is witnessing all signs of its workforce either stagnating or even suffering attrition.
The section of youth with credentials that facilitates them to cross the bar, their number being a minuscule fraction of the total number needing employment, may be staring at the three issues of pay, promotion and pension, governments can only face the challenge of reining in unemployment marginally. As for the private sector, the benchmark for successful career is unarguably track record of output consistent with wages.