The Promise of Job Creation & The Fluctuating Rate of Unemployment

The fluctuating rate of unemployment in India paints a worrying picture.

3 min read
Image used for representational purposes.

One of the tall promises of the Modi government when it came to power in 2014 was job creation. The statistics, however, paint a worrying picture.

According to Trading Economics, the unemployment rate was 3.53% in 2014, the year Prime Minister Narendra Modi took charge. Data from two years later shows that there hasn’t been a substantial decrease in the unemployment rate, which stood at 3.46% in 2016.

Compare this to the data from the previous UPA government. Unemployment stood at 3.91% in 2009, when Manmohan Singh began his second stint as prime minister. It was down by almost four percentage points in 2014.

Top employers in India
Top employers in India
(Photo altered by The Quint)

Another worrying figure on employment comes from KLEMS India’s database. A study, supported by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), shows that employment actually shrank from 0.2% in 2014-15 to 0.1% in financial year 2015-16.

What Sectors Are Generating Employment?

The public sector in India seems to be the biggest employer when it comes to the formal sector. According to the Statistical Year Book India 2017, the Railways in 2000-2001 had 15,49,385 employees, while in 2014-15, it had 13,03,860.

The top employers of public sector are Indian Railways (14 lakh), Indian Army (13 lakh), India Post (4.66 lakh) and State Bank of India (2.2 lakh). According to Business Today, the top job creators of the private sector are Tata Consultancy Services (3 lakh), Infosys (1.6 lakh), IBM India (1.5 lakh) and Wipro (1.3 Lakh).

According to an IndiaSpend report, between July 2014 and December 2016, the eight major sectors of manufacturing, trade, construction, education, health, information technology, transport, and hospitality created 641,000 jobs. data. The numbers do not include jobs created between January 2016 and March 2016, for which data are unavailable.

In comparison, these sectors had added 1.28 million jobs between July 2011 and December 2013, according to labour ministry data.


What Employment Generation Schemes Has the Government Launched?

One of the major schemes launched by the Modi government to boost job creation is the Pradhan Mantri Rojgar Protsahan Yojana (PMRPY). The Scheme has been designed to give incentives to employers for generation of employment, by paying 8.33% EPS contribution of the employer for the new employment.

According to IndiaSpend, The number of beneficiaries of the scheme has fallen by 24.4%, from 428,000 in 2012-13 to 323,362 in 2015-16, according to government data. Until October 2016, the programme had created an additional 187,252 jobs, according to the latest data available.

According to Hindustan Times, Modi interacted with 400 young chief executive officers and professionals in Delhi in August 2017 in a bid to include the private sector in job creation, income enhancement, technology disruption and innovation, ease of doing business, good governance and policy.

The young CEOs put forward their action plans before the government with presentations on designated topics. Whether these plans will yield desired results is yet to be seen.

(With inputs from Livemint, Hindustan Times, Trading Economics and statistical Yearbook of India, 2017)

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