Unemployment in India

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Unemployment in India is a social issue and unemployment records in India are kept by the Ministry of Labour and Employment of India.


Union Ministry for Labour and Employment claimed national unemployment hovers around 3.7 percent in 2015-16. However, the data is based on usual principal subsidiary status (UPSS) approach that requires only 30 days of work in a year to call the person employed. 77 percent of the families reportedly have no regular wage earner and more than 67 percent have income less than 11,000 per month. Around 58 percent of unemployed graduates and 62 percent of unemployed post graduates cited non-availability of jobs matching with education/skill and experience as the main reason for unemployment. As per the National Skill Development Mission Document, as much as 97 percent of the workforce in India has not undergone formal skill training. About 76 percent of the households did not benefit from employment generating schemes like MGNREGA, PMEGP, SGSY, SJSRY, etc.

A significant change in inequality in income and wealth is possible only in a longer term prospective. Employment structure of an economy is the normal instrument that can cause a change in inequality either way i.e. an increase or a decrease in inequality. Since the government functions within the administrative and fiscal constraints, the target group programmes normally have a marginal impact on income redistribution. Income of labour enables flow of resources across income classes of people and across the social and ethnic groups. Flows of income across locations are influenced both by assets available and modes of creating employment opportunities. However, income generated by employment of migrant labour, facilitates flow of resources across regions of a given regional distribution of capital assets. Employment and equity of income across classes of people and across regions are therefore, closely related to each other in the long term.[1]

According to India Skills Report launched in the 3rd CII National Conference on Skill Development, 96 percent were found unemployable out of 100,000 candidates. The Report not only captured the skill levels of talent pool but also brought out the hiring estimates across major Industry sectors in the country. The report also brings out a general trend amongst the employers to look for skills rather than qualifications in candidates.[2][3]According to NSS (66th Round) Report from Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation, Government of India published on 2013[4]

Steps taken by the Government[edit]

Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act 2005

The Government of India has taken several steps to decrease the unemployment rates like launching the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme which guarantees a 100-day employment to an unemployed person in a year. It has implemented it in 200 of the districts and further will be expanded to 600 districts. In exchange for working under this scheme the person is paid 150 per day.[citation needed]

Apart from Employment Exchange, the Government of India publishes a weekly newspaper titled Employment News. It comes out every Saturday evening and gives detailed information about vacancies for government jobs across India. Along with the list of vacancies, it also has the notifications for various government exams and recruitment procedures for government jobs.

Steps taken on Disguised Unemployment

Agriculture is the most labour absorbing sector of the economy. In recent years, there has been a decline in the dependence of population on agriculture partly because of disguised unemployment. Some of the surplus labour in agriculture has moved to either secondary or the tertiary sector. In the secondary sector, small scale manufacturing is the most labour absorbing. In case of the tertiary sector, various new services are now appearing like biotechnology, information technology and so on. The government has taken steps in these sectors for the disguised unemployed people in these methods.[5]

National Career Service Scheme

The Government of India has initiated National Career Service Scheme whereby a web portal named National Career Service Portal (www.ncs.gov.in) has been launched by the Ministry of Labour and Employment (India). Through this portal, job-seekers and employers can avail the facility of a common platform for seeking and updating job information. Not only private vacancies, contractual jobs available in the government sector are also available on the portal.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Bureau of Labour Statistics, Indian Government. (8 October 2010). "Report on Employment & Unemployment Survey (2009-10)" (PDF). Retrieved 29 March 2014. 
  2. ^ The first India Skills Report 2014 launched
  4. ^ "Socio-Economic Profiles & Inter-State comparison of some Major States of India" (PDF). Economic Survey 2012-13, Government of India. 2012–2013. p. 276. Retrieved 21 April 2014. 
  5. ^ Employment News