Suhasini Gupta India is sixth largest economy in the world. In Union Budget 2019-20, GDP is expected to grow at 7 per cent. Being second most populous country with 1.40 billion spread across urban areas, small towns and rural areas, there are enormous issues that Indian economy is dealing with. All these issues are equally important to achieve the expected growth rate of 7 per cent. Some of them are highlighted as follows:- Unemployment front- The unemployment statistics being released by Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI) has shown that unemployment rate in India was 6.1 per cent in 2017-2018 which was highest in the two decades. There has been 15 per cent increase in unemployment rate among youth aged 20-24 years since 2016. The report was published after a long delay and when the figures came, the reason being given by the government for spike in joblessness was that they have used a new methodology and thus, these figures can’t be compared with the previous ones. A report published by International Labour Organization (ILO) shows that economic growth of 1 per cent leads to 0.3 per cent employment generation. Approximately 5 per cent of India’s total workforce is formally skilled against 75 per cent in Germany and 80 per cent in Japan. According to World Bank, India needs to create 8.1 million jobs in a year to reduce its unemployment rate. Agriculture Distress- Though majority of India’s population is dependent upon agriculture for its livelihood, the share of agriculture sector in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of India was 15.87 per cent in 2018-19. Distress occurs due to low prices of agricultural product and thus, low income of farmers. The government even has initiated a lot of insurance schemes like Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana but the schemes are not much successful because of delay or denial to pay compensation in case of crop failure. Moreover, agricultural sector is not upgraded with the latest technology and there is no proper mechanism for agricultural marketing to take place. A recent research by Centre for Study of Developing Societies (CSDS) shows that more than 70 per cent farmers are there in India who want to give up farming and opt some other profession. Rising Non-Performing Assets (NPAs) -NPAs are loans or advances for which principal or interest payments remain outstanding for more than 90 days. Inspite of several initiatives by RBI and Central Government, the problem of NPAs remain an unsolved agenda. NPAs in India in March 2019 were 14.6 per cent. According to Crisil report, NPAs in banks will reduce to 8 per cent by March 2020. In fact, there are laws which deal with bad debts like SARFAESI Act (Securitization and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Securities Interest Act) and DRT Act (Debt Recovery Tribunal). Even in July 2019, RBI imposed a fine of Rs. 7 crore on SBI for violating NPA norms. There are laws which deal with bad debts like SARFAESI Act (Securitization and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Securities Interest Act) and DRT Act (Debt Recovery Tribunal) still, the problem of NPAs remain unfinished in India. Reservation System- Reservation to SCs / STs/ OBC is an age old practice and this is one of the reasons why India is still far behind other countries. Due to this reservation system, the talented people suffer. Today, government has initiated a plethora of schemes for backward classes and their status has also improved a lot compared to the times it was few years back. Reservation system should be abolished in India. It is generally observed that in every entrance exam, not only the application fee for SCs and STs is less but also the margin between cut-off of Unreserved category and Reserved category is significantly high. It is questionable as today’s youth to be tomorrow’s leaders. Does a person who is getting admission in colleges because of category and low cut off will be able to run the administration in the time to come? Even in medical, engineering or any other profession, a candidate from General category who does not get college of his choice because of high cut off thinks that his entire hard work has gone waste. On the other hand, a candidate who has SC/ ST quota and far less marks than the candidate of unreserved category is getting selected in a good college This is also true for other spheres like teaching, banking and civil service exams. Thus, for India to compete with developed economies Government should abolish reservation system and reservation should be on economic basis and is one of the pre-requisites for economic development. Inadequate infrastructure and Primitive technological methods- Economic and social overheads of capital which include healthcare, transport, communication, science and technology and energy are inadequate in India. Majority of industries in India are stick to old methods of technology. Only a limited number of industries upgrade themselves with the latest technological advancements. Moreover, new technology requires skilled human capital. Thus, skilled labour and poor human capital create obstacles in the development of Indian economy. These are the various issues that are needed to be addressed by the current Government. No doubt, Government is putting the best effort to eradicate poverty, addressing health and hygiene issues. Collaborative endeavours to address these problems can help India in establishing itself as a model for world’s fast-growing nations. But the above mentioned issues are needed to be solved immediately. Only then India can achieve the status of global superpower.
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© 2017 State Times Daily Newspaper