India’s unemployment rate highest in 45 years

Unemployment rate in India rises to all time high in last 45 years

The NITI Aayog on Thursday said that an official report according to which unemployment rate in India was at a 45-year-high of 6.1% in 2017-'18 was not final and the data related to it was still under process.

Two of the National Statistical Commission (NSC) members, including the acting chairman, resigned this week alleging that the government withheld the release of this report. Without mentioning the Opposition party, he said there has been a confusion spearheaded by those using employment report which has been pervaded but has not been finalised. That was the highest since 1972/73, the period for which the data are comparable, the newspaper reported, citing documents it had reviewed. According to the survey, the unemployment rate stood at 2.2% in 2011-'12 in comparison to 2017-18, during the UPA's second tenure.

Explaining Kumar's point that the two reports can't be compared, Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant said earlier the data collection and analysis was done in five years.

In September 2018, economists from Azim Premji University released a report which said that in 2015, the headline rate of unemployment reached 5%, with youth unemployment at a very high 16%.

Joblessness is higher in urban areas (7.8%) than rural areas (5.3%), it said.

The data is significant because this was the first comprehensive assessment of India's employment situation conducted after Modi's decision in November 2016 to implement demonetisation overnight.

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Even before its release, this was a controversial report.

The government declined to confirm or deny the findings contained in the report.

After the chaotic launch of a national sales tax in July 2017, hundreds of thousands have lost jobs in small businesses.

He said the country was creating more than 7 million jobs a year, enough for "new entrants" joining the workforce. And critics say the government's claims of economic success have sounded increasingly hollow.

Modi came to power in 2014 promising to galvanise the economy, and boost employment prospects for the millions of young Indians entering the jobs market each year.

The NSSO job report was previously planned to be released in December 2018. "After demonetisation, we have seen that the labour force itself has shrunk", he said, adding that urban women, who face an unemployment rate of 27% are worst hit.

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