India’s April unemployment rate highest since October 2016, rises to 7.6%


According to data compiled by the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) released on Wednesday, the rate of unemployment in April rose to 7.6 per cent, up from 6.71 per cent in March. The unemployment rate is the highest since October 2016.

“The lower unemployment rate in March was a blip, and it has again climbed following the trend of earlier months,” Mahesh Vyas, head of the Mumbai-based CMIE think-tank, told Reuters.

According to a separate private business survey, as mentioned by Business Standard, expansion of factory activity saw it slowest pace in eight months in April.

Recently, a report by the Centre for Sustainable Employment (CSE), Azim Premji University, Bengaluru, showed that as many as 50 lakh men, majority of whom worked in the informal sector, lost their jobs over the two years beginning late 2016, at a time when Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced demonetisation.

The report titled, ‘State of Working India 2019’ was released on Tuesday.

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“This is a net figure and therefore, whatever jobs may have been added elsewhere, there have been enough jobs lost, on balance five million less work opportunities were there, so that is not a good thing for the economy. Particularly given that we have been seeing what appears to be a strong GDP growth. So, in this case, to end up with net job losses is not a good thing. We should be seeing a workforce increase rather than decrease,” HuffingtonPost quoted Prof. Amit Basole, the lead author of the report who heads CSE, as saying.

The government has also been accused of delaying the publishing of an ‘unfavourable’ job report.

According to the National Sample Survey Office’s (NSSO’s) periodic labour force survey (PLFS), India’s unemployment rate stood at a 45-year-high of 6.1 per cent in 2017-18.

According to the documents reviewed by Business Standard, the report states that the unemployment rate in 2017-18 was at its highest level since 1972-73.

The report created controversy since it has not been made public yet and if speculations are to be believed, the delay has been due to the data about jobs which is sure to bring embarrassment for the government.

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