Unemployment in India is getting worse which has made the world’s second largest population have to cope with its significant impact on what are the employment opportunities in the country, specially for those who are poor and badly educated, and who face a harsh job market.
The unemployment rate is rising every year as shown by the data released by the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE), and which is currently running at 6.1%, according to the latest figures, which pose a problem for the new government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
According to Indian news website, The Wire, “at the most basic and fundamental level, the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government does not have a clear and sensitive strategy to introduce labour law reforms. The government and its associated think-tanks have attacked existing labour institutions such as labour laws, by arguing that they protect the minuscule organised sector, often at the cost of the vast masses of workers in the unorganised sector, and they do not aid in employment generation.”
Despite the country boasting many qualified professionals in many areas such as engineering and medicine, a large number of the population are illiterate or poorly educated. According to AFP, many of them are unable to secure employment in well-established organisations. They are forced to seek employment elsewhere, as far as hundreds of miles away from their homes, so that they seek work as labourers toiling in a cold Indian Himalayan desert to repair some of the world's highest roads
They work for six days a week, without tools, only using shovels and old sacks to move rocks and sand, with the help of the local Ladakhi workers, some of them women. Each morning the group gets on a truck to reach the work site, after a breakfast of tea and bread. They return to their basic housing tents after sunset, and have a meal of rice and lentils, AFP reported.
According to AFP “Their back-breaking stint will fetch them 40,000 rupees ($572) each, a considerable sum in a country where more than 21% of the 1.3 billion population live on less than two dollars a day in 2011.” This has made migration for work a feature of life in rural India. According to the non-government public service initiative, Aajeevika Bureau, millions work in hazardous conditions with little legal or social protection.
Apart from the fear of its potentially disastrous financial impact, unemployment has many unfavourable social outcomes that any community would fear, such as crime. However, poverty has been directly linked together with unemployment, as well as increasing inequality. Long- term unemployment can ruin families and undermine society, a problem India’s new government will be forced to tackle.