Modi govt’s only mission is to ‘keep youth jobless’, says Kharge

Kharge said the latest government data punctures the government's claims.

New Delhi: The Modi government has only one mission and that is to “keep the youth jobless”, Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge alleged on Tuesday in a scathing attack against the Centre on the issue of unemployment.

The Modi government may be refuting independent economic reports like the one by Citigroup on unemployment but how will it deny government data, Kharge asked in a lengthy post on X citing various reports.

“The truth is that Modi government is solely responsible for shattering the dreams of crores of youth in the last 10 years,” he alleged.

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Kharge said the latest government data punctures the government’s claims.

According to NSSO’s (National Sample Survey Office) Annual Survey of Unincorporated Sector Enterprises, in the manufacturing sector, 54 lakh jobs were lost in unincorporated units in the seven years between 2015 and 2023, he said.

“In 2010-11, 10.8 crore employees were employed in unincorporated, non-agricultural enterprises across India, which has become 10.96 crore in 2022-23 – that is, a marginal increase of only 16 lakh in 12 years,” he said.

Kharge cited the latest Periodic Labour Force Survey (PLFS), to state that the urban unemployment rate is at 6.7 per cent (Q4, FY24).

“Modi government beats the drum of employment generation in the Formal sector by showing EPFO data, but even if we assume that data to be true, it has seen a 10% decline in new jobs in 2023,” he said.

A report by IIM Lucknow, after analysing government data, shows that unemployment growth, high unemployment among the educated, low participation of women in the workforce are prevalent in the country, Kharge said.

He said the Modi government rejects independent economic reports because they expose their “shameless attempt to whitewash”.

According to the CMIE (Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy), the current unemployment rate in the country has reached 9.2 per cent, he said, adding that it is a whopping 18.5 per cent for women.

“According to the ILO report, 83% of the unemployed in the country are youth. According to the India Employment Report 2024, between 2012 and 2019, about 7 crore youth joined the labour force, but there was zero growth in employment – only 0.01%!” he added.

The Congress chief also referred to the 2023 report from Azim Premji University to say that 42.3 per cent of graduates under the age of 25 in the country are unemployed.

“According to the latest report of Citigroup, India needs 1.2 crore jobs annually, and even 7% GDP growth will not be able to create enough jobs for our youth. Under the Modi Govt, the country has achieved an average of only 5.8% as GDP growth,” he said.

“Be it government jobs, or private sector, self-employment or unorganised sector – Modi government has only one mission ‘Keep the youth jobless’,” Kharge said.

The Congress, which has been attacking the government over the issue of unemployment, on Sunday cited the Citigroup report to allege that the Modi government had accentuated India’s “unemployment crisis” with the decimation of job-creating MSMEs through the “Tughlakian demonetisation, a hastily rushed GST, and rising imports from China”.

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