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How India's job crisis exasperating its youth?

India's job crisis; The difficulty in finding employment for young people has been a persistent problem in India. The drastic increase in

By Babra Wani
New Update
How India's job crisis exasperating its youth

Ground Report | New Delhi: India's job crisis; The difficulty in finding employment for young people has been a persistent problem in India. The drastic increase in unemployment, serious difficulties in pursuing studies at a distance, a feeling of isolation, the forced return to domestic chores of young people from disadvantaged backgrounds: in a country where almost half the population is under 25 years of age, it is the young those who pay more dearly for the consequences of the health crisis. 

India's job crisis

The economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic is the most serious that India has suffered since it gained its independence in 1947. In the fiscal year 2020-2021, the national GDP fell by 8.5%, and the triennial survey conducted in 170,000 households by the “Centre for Monitoring the Indian Economy” showed that 41.2% of people surveyed lost their job between December 2019 and April 2020. Among young people aged 15 to 24 years, the job loss rate increased to 58.5%.

People who are looking for a job and/or want to work are referred to as "unemployed," and their percentage of the labour force is referred to as the unemployment rate, which is falling in the case of India.

 According to an estimated data by World Bank’s South Asia Economic Focus Spring 2018, India will need to create about 8 million jobs every year. The data further revealed that as of 2019-20, India had about 45 million unemployed people who were willing to work. Of these, 33 million were actively seeking jobs without success and the remaining 12 million were passively unemployed. Of the 45 million unemployed, 31 million were in their twenties.

Due to the economic downturn aggravated by the pandemic, India's jobless rate is believed to have topped the global average in five of the last six years, according to data from Mumbai's Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) and the International Labour Organization, the unemployment rate rose up to 7.9% last month, it was almost 7% in last two years.

After the Covid-19 take over most of the countries all over the globe witnessed a surge in unemployment rates. But India's rates are higher than that of Bangladesh, Mexico and Vietnam. This rise in the unemployment rate is alarming and most of the people affected are young workers with an age group from 15-23 years old. For the last two years, continuous lockdowns are believed to be the biggest cause of unemployment. But what needs to be kept in mind is that not only the lockdowns but the absence of firm policies are equally responsible. To add to the causes, research shows that there is a considerable negative association between economic growth and the unemployment rate. Furthermore, GDP was discovered to be responsible for 48 per cent of the change in the unemployment rate.

The lack of the informal sector is also one of the major factors of unemployment. The economic losses since the last two years have compelled a lot of non-government entities to either shut down or to cut down the list of their employees thus adding to the number. The government also has failed to keep its promises of providing jobs to everyone. Also, many experts believe that youth with higher education qualifications are the ones unemployed because they are not ready to take up any low-paying informal jobs. (India's job crisis)

Ramifications of Unemployment

Insha is a well-educated 35-year-old girl who comes from a humble background from Srinagar. She is still waiting for a prospective groom to get married to. The reason is that her father, a government employee himself, feels that a person with a government job is the only suitable one for her. This lack of a ' suitable match ' has left Insha hopeless, who has now crossed the societal age of getting married. But this is not the story of one Insha alone, there are many more girls like Insha who are still waiting to get married.

Like Insha, there are many people in particular who are being affected by the recent rise in unemployment rates. The lack of jobs and employment has also increased the rate of depression and other mental health issues among youth. Many people cannot get married because no one wants to marry an unemployed person. This delay in marriages also causes depression among the youth. People feel that there is no stability in their life.

Many young people fall into the dark world of drugs. Unemployment remains one of the main causes of rising substance abuse. Data provided by Punjab Red Cross Saket Hospital shows that among the total 996 drug addicts, who underwent treatment at the hospital in 2018, more than 79 per cent were either unemployed or partially employed. An increase in unemployment has also increased the suicidal rate in the country.

According to the findings of the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) in 2020, over 10,600 persons in India committed suicide as a result of unemployment, poverty, or bankruptcy and indebtedness, an increase of 8% over 2019, out of which around 2,800 people decided to take their own lives due to joblessness. The lack of jobs also leads to dependency factors, most of the youth are dependent on their families for financial support.

This dependency factor also adds to their misery and results in low self-esteem. It is pertinent to mention that the lack of jobs in India compels the youth to move to other countries to find jobs, which affects the human resources here. Joblessness can also lead to unrest in the country. There have also been incidents of protests and vandalism by unemployed youth.

The logistics and data are alarming and India's unemployment situation has reached a tipping point. Now is the time for the government and local governments to take the problem seriously and work to solve it in order to reduce unemployment. Also, to fully address the issue of unemployment, the main issue of unemployment which is India's enormous population and lack of work must be addressed. The government needs to frame policies and schemes to curb the issues of unemployment.

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