Surfeit of jobs, soaring joblessness
Editorial

Surfeit of jobs, soaring joblessness

The postulate that the nation’s economy in monetary terms continues to be wearing a smile entirely due to sustained index of industrial production marked by unprecedented opportunities to the youth in economically productive age in their quest for jobs with steady salary juxtaposed with soaring unemployment rate on the cusp of 10 percent prompts one to invoke the famous line of the sailor on the high seas saying, ‘Water water everywhere but not a drop to drink.’ The biggest job staring at the millions of youth, armed with degrees and diplomas in a wide range of subjects of Science, Technology, Commerce, Management and Humanities seems to be the job of landing a job consistent with their academic background. The report based on a recent survey states that nearly 80 percent of employees recruited through campus visits by companies in the corporate sector quit their jobs within a year or two for various personal reasons, despite commanding salaries in amounts that mock at the salaries earned by government employees. According to informed industry circles creating jobs in the formal sector is a bigger problem than paucity of jobs.

Thanks to the initiative taken by youths graduating from reputed institutions, particularly in engineering and technology streams, they have emerged as job-givers instead of job-seekers, having come up as the new-fangled enterprise now familiar to all as Start-Up. The country now reportedly hosts more than 7,000 Start-Ups. The Government mulling tax sops to this newly-emerging sector is likely to attract more youth to become entrepreneurs and thus address the issue of unemployment to whatever extent.

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The figures relating to India’s employment scenario are frightening, particularly in the light of the numbers sourced to the Government being questioned for their veracity. The Finance Minister, in his budget speech while presenting the 2019-20 budget of the Government of India in the nation’s Parliament, announced that processing had began for providing 2,00,000 jobs in the ambit of the Government. Given the feature that only about 15 million people in the country are in organised jobs and also about 10 million job-seekers emerge annually, the dream of people to land jobs in that sector remains unfulfilled eternally. We are hearing about the urgent action to raise the skill levels of the labour force and also reform of the education sector to improve employability, which raises hopes of better days ahead.

The episodes such as evicting self-employed youth in the business of mobile canteens of Mysuru by the civic authorities only aggravates the unemployment problem. The message for the administration from such actions is that the strategy for tackling the problem is to move from the unorganised to the organised, to harness the human resource mass.

February 11, 2019

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