Citizens' Issues
Ignited hopes, no jobs. Why Jats, others revolt
Sonipat, Gurgaon, New Delhi : Square-jawed, cleft chin and hair untidily spiked, Vikas Thakaran glowered as he explained why he was here in this scrum of young men blocking Bakhtawar chowk, 30 km southwest of India’s capital, part of a violent week-long agitation that has left 12 dead, vehicles and railway stations burnt, and the army deployed.
 
Thakaran, 24, is a computer-science engineer, but he is unemployed. “I applied for government jobs four-five times, many times elsewhere, but I didn’t get through,” he told IndiaSpend. We found many educated, angry and either unemployed young men like Thakaran, or those unable to find a job commensurate with their aspirations and education, among the thousands of protestors from a caste group that many say has no reason to protest.
 
Traditional landowners, the Jats are a powerful Hindu caste now demanding classification as a “backward” caste - a contention rejected last year by the Supreme Court - so that government jobs can be reserved for them.
 
However, an IndiaSpend analysis of employment data and evaluation of aspirations of young Jats revealed that the protests are manifestations of India’s slow, inadequate job-creation and a failing education system creating thousands of “unemployable” graduates.
 
This disconnect between education, aspirations and jobs explains similar demands to be classified as “backward” and “other-backward-caste (OBC)” by socially powerful caste groups - Gujjars (Rajasthan), Marathas (Maharashtra), Patels (Gujarat) and Kapus (Andhra Pradesh), among others - struggling to find satisfactory employment.
 
Organised industry added 500,000 jobs in 2014; India needs more than a million a month
 
Saurabh Rangi, 24, a native of Rohtak city, scored 75 percent in the All India Engineering Entrance Exam (AIEEE), but he is on the streets of Haryana’s Gurgaon city - 30 km northwest of Delhi-because he did not get admission to a government college and had to pay “lakhs” of rupees to graduate from a private college. Rangi is angry; he holds a public-relations trainee job at cardekho.com, an automobile website, but wants a government job.
 
“I got a B.Tech in 2013, but I am unemployed even after two years,” said Keshav Lather, as he protested in Gohana, Sonipat, 43 km west of Rohtak. “I have applied for a Central government job. But I always lose out because of reservation…a professional education does not necessarily mean a good job. We were surprised at the type of jobs and money offered to many of our friends.”
 
Labourers, guards and maids form the majority of the jobs available to more than a million Indians - some estimate it is nearly two million - who join the workforce every month, as IndiaSpend reported. Over 30 years, India generated no more than seven million jobs every year, with only a fraction being the kinds of jobs the young Jats desire.
 
This is why protestors across India demand secure government jobs; it is why engineers and doctors throng job openings for peons, clerks and constables (as they did in Uttar Pradesh last year, when 2.3 million applied for 368 positions of peons).
 
As we also reported, new employment data indicate two disquieting trends.
 
One, a slowdown in employment in the formal, organised sector (which in any case employs only 12 percent of India’s labour force), the prime staging ground of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Make in India programme. In Indian factories, more than 400,000 people lost their jobs during the financial year 2012-13, according to government data.
 
Two, this slowdown hides a larger, long-term trend: India Inc is automating and squeezing more output from its workers and so needs fewer of them.
 
In isolation, the latest government data show that organised industry added nearly 500,000 jobs in 2013-14. Unemployment in India, according to labour ministry data, is less than five percent, but these data do not reflect under-, partial- or disguised-employment, such as Rangi’s.
 
No more than 17 percent of all Indians were wage earners, as a 2013-14 labour ministry report acknowledged, with no more than 60 percent of those above 15 years old who sought work over the year getting it (more than 46 percent in urban India did not find work).
 
“What India needs annually is not just 23 or 24 million jobs but livelihoods,” said economist Ajit Ranade.
 
He said job opportunities would come only with new investments and enterprises. “If we need to create two million jobs every month, then we need to also create 20,000 to 50,000 new enterprises every month,” he said. “At this stage of our business cycle, we need a big push in the form of investment in infrastructure.”
 
Jat youth on the streets do not want informal-sector jobs, as our interviews indicated, but here too, as IndiaSpend has reported, employment declined by six percent since 2004-05-and this is the sector that offers the most jobs - 340 million.
 
Ranade said the government should focus on small and medium enterprises, revamp infrastructure, rationalise tax structures, revive skills in traditional industries, set up technical training institutes producing skilled workers and ensure ease of doing business.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

User

COMMENTS

Hemen Parekh

1 year ago

Exporting Manpower ?

Our exports have been falling, month after month , for the past 18 months in a row
But this is not unique to India
With rapidly shrinking World Trade , exports of nearly all countries around the world are falling
Barring a few exceptions , economies of all the countries are declining
So , it came as a surprise to read a news report ( BL / 20 Feb ) , that , despite the fact that Malaysia has 2.1 million registered foreign workers and 1.7 million illegal foreign workers , it signed a deal with Bangladesh to hire another 1.5 million Bangladeshi workers , over the next 3 years !
As expected, local trade unions have criticized this deal
Now let us not start putting together a strategy for Manpower Export , despite the fact that of all the countries in the World , India has the largest number of its citizens working abroad ( legal + illegal )
I believe , close to 22 million persons of Indian origin , with some 7 million in Gulf Countries
But trade unions and political parties everywhere are vehemently opposed to migrant workers who take away jobs from local residents
Even EU , which accepted some 1 million refugees from war-torn Syria / Iraq / Afghanistan , in 2015 , have started repatriating what it terms as " Economic Migrants " seeking " better life " in EU , as distinct from political refugees
But that is not stopping 3000 such " refugees "(political or economic), from forcing their way into EU , every day !
Within India , we have seen in the past ( and continue to witness , currently ) , economically backward people ( euphemism for " poor " ) , migrating to cities in other relatively affluent States , in search of livelihood , occasionally . causing resentment among local citizens
So far , such inter-state migrations have not caused any serious problem because of our Unifying forces of religion / language / culture / heritage / traditions and our Constitution
But with annual addition of some 12 million persons (including some 3.5 million graduates ), to our legions of jobseekers , things could get ugly - especially since neither the Public nor the Private sector , can create this many jobs every year !
We need to find ways in which these millions can become " Self Employed "
I hope that each and every announcement that Shri Jaitley makes in his budget speech on 29 Feb , would lead to creation of " Self Employment " in the economically backward States of India
With most of our States being the size of many EU countries , we may not be in a position to Export Manpower , even across our State boundaries , forget across the International borders !
For Indian Federal structure to hold together , we must work on the double to reduce inequality between States !
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
hemenparekh.in / blogs
24 Feb 2016



Indonesia sinks 30 boats to fight illegal fishing
Jakarta : Indonesia has sunk 30 impounded foreign and local boats in its campaign against illegal fishing in its waters.
 
Among the 30 scuttled empty vessels, 11 were identified from Vietnam, eight from Malaysia, seven from the Philippines and three from Indonesia, Xinhua news agency reported.
 
Maritime and Fisheries Minister Susi Pudjiastuti on Monday said the boats were seized because they were found poaching in the country's waters.
 
Indonesia has so far scuttled 151 vessels for illegal operations since President Joko Widodo, who took office in October 2014, declared a war on vessels illegally fishing in the country's waters.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

User

India's fiscal position to stay weaker than peers: Moody's
New Delhi : Ahead of India's budget for the next fiscal, Moody's Investors Service on Tuesday said the country's fiscal position will remain weaker than other emerging economies in the near term even if fiscal consolidation continued on course.
 
"Even if the budgetary consolidation continues, India's fiscal metrics will remain weaker than rating peers in the near term, because of the relatively high level of India's state and central government deficits and debt," Moody's said in a report.
 
"The importance of the upcoming budget lies in its message on the government's fiscal consolidation plans," the American agency said.
 
"But at around 63.8 percent of GDP, India's government debt ratio remains high compared to the median of 49.5 percent for Baa3-rated peers. Without continued fiscal consolidation, India's government finances will continue to compare poorly to peers," it added.
 
The fiscal deficit for 2014-15 touched 4.1 percent of the gross domestic product, while the government has targeted at containing it at 3.9 percent and 3.5 percent of GDP for this fiscal and the next, respectively.
 
"The budget will reveal whether and how the government intends to maintain the trend of modest fiscal deficit reduction of the past few years," the report said.
 
Moody's said the fiscal weakness was partly from structural factors. Lower per-capita incomes of around $1,700 limit the government's tax base and raise pressure for subsidies and development spending.
 
"Moreover, interest payments absorb almost a fifth of Indian government revenues, a consequence of high debt, which we estimate at 63.8 percent of GDP in fiscal 2016, down from 83.1 percent in fiscal 2005. This restricts the government's fiscal flexibility," it said.
 
Noting that the current growth environment complicates fiscal consolidation, Moody's said India's impressive growth rate that outperformed similarly rated sovereigns, was accompanied last year by subdued rural demand owing to poor monsoons, and weak corporate profitability with pricing power staying low.
 
"For instance, despite a robust GDP growth above 7 percent in 2015, rural demand and corporate profitability remained subdued, weighing on tax revenues," it said, adding that government tax revenue growth has cooled.
 
On the basis of trends in revenues and expenditures over the last five years, Moody's said India's fiscal consolidation process remains vulnerable to economic shocks, such as a fall in corporate profits or consumption growth, or an increase in subsidy costs.
 
"Therefore, fiscal improvements are likely to be limited in the near term. Whether they occur over the medium term will depend on the successful implementation of policy measures that expand the revenue base and/or curtail expenditure commitments," Moody's said.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

User

We are listening!

Solve the equation and enter in the Captcha field.
  Loading...
Close

To continue


Please
Sign Up or Sign In
with

Email
Close

To continue


Please
Sign Up or Sign In
with

Email

BUY NOW

The Scam
24 Year Of The Scam: The Perennial Bestseller, reads like a Thriller!
Moneylife Magazine
Fiercely independent and pro-consumer information on personal finance
Stockletters in 3 Flavours
Outstanding research that beats mutual funds year after year
MAS: Complete Online Financial Advisory
(Includes Moneylife Magazine and Lion Stockletter)