Dr. Banarsi Lal & Dr. P Sharma
Unemployment is defined as a condition of a person who is willing to work but does not find a paying job. Presently our country is facing various socio-economic problems and the problem of unemployment is one of the most serious. It is nothing new when we are told that there are ten times or more applications for a small number of vacancies. This phenomenon varies from State to State depending on the nature of unemployment in a particular State. Many factors are responsible for unemployment in a country. In the agricultural sector, unemployment can be due to seasonal lay-off. It can be due to lack of adequate skills and technological changes. It can also be due to fluctuation in economy. Our valuable human resource is wasted due to unemployment problem. Now, the question arises why India is unable to tackle this problem? Even after so much planning we are unable to tackle this problem. Our country population is rapidly increasing. It has been observed that India with its annual population growth of 1.65 per cent is the largest contributor to the world’s population growth which accounts for 21 per cent of the annual increase in the world population and China is in second position with a contribution of 15 per cent. We will surpass China in the years to come and the employment opportunities will become bleak. The employment opportunities are not keeping pace with the pace of population growth. Also our education system prepares our youths for white collared jobs. One of the most important sections of society is youth. Our society has to face many problems due to the unemployment.
The unemployment problem affects the society in many ways. Unemployment problem increases crime rates, increases in the poverty rate and deterioration in the health standards of the people. In case of crime rate, the youths are the main culprits. If the energy of the youths is properly utilized then they can contribute a lot for the national prosperity. On the other hand youths can be disastrous for the society. Crime rate in the cities is mainly done by the youths. We observe the chain snatching, robbery and murder almost every day. Unemployed youths are betrayed by the anti-social elements and separatist movements. These anti-social elements and separatists target the unemployed youths for destabilising our country by using them as tools for creating mayhem.
India still has the poverty on large scale. Unemployment is one of the reasons of the poverty. The families with unemployed youths are pushed to the vicious circle of poverty. Unavailability of the social security makes the life of an unemployed youth more difficult. His physical and mental health is affected by the unemployment. It is difficult for a person to maintain his health who is struggling to get square meal. Whenever an unemployed person suffers with an ailment, it becomes a very costly affair for him. A report in a news paper states that the people of Vidarbha have stopped seeking medical help as they are unable to buy the prescribed medicines.
With the changing trends in job market, the advent of new technologies like Information Technology and Biotechnology, the whole employment pattern is undergoing a sea change. The youths of India also think that they too should change with the fast developing trends if they want to live a life of dignity. Many hope that they would get a call from the employment exchanges but the call never materialise. As far as the future of professional is concerned, there is little to worry about. In Bangalore there are more than one lakh engineers who are employed in different companies. In 1998 when Mr. Atal Bihari Vajpayee declared that India would become a Knowledge Superpower, nobody took him seriously. Presently the Indian youths are enjoying the harvest of good intensions. Could anybody have dreamed ten years ago that computer software and call centres would change the face of young India? Now India has become a global power in software. Now less than ten per cent of the population is employed in the Central and State Government services. The remaining population is working in the unorganised sector and a small minority in enterprises owned by them.
After independence Government of India has taken various steps to increase the employment opportunities and eradicating the employment problem. Many centrally sponsored programmes like Pradhan Mantari Rojgar Yojana (PMGY), Pardhan Mantari Gram Swarozgar Yojana (PMGSY), Jawahar Rozgar Yojana, Self -Employed Scheme for Educated Unemployed Youths (SEEUY) etc. were launched by the Government of India. Despite all these efforts, the problem still prevails. In order to provide the employment to our masses, firstly we need to check the population growth. There is big gap between the number of employment opportunities in our country and yearly graduates from various institutions. It is very difficult for the government to absorb all the freshers. The Indian government is spending crores of rupees in various programmes and schemes to control the population but even then the population growth has not drastically reduced. Our current education system does not emphasis on vocational education. Even though a national policy on education has been adopted by giving priority to vocationalisation of the secondary education but the progress in this field is very low and the quality of these vocational courses is also very poor. The Government of India should take it very seriously and regular monitoring of such programmes is must. Vocational education just diverts the youth’s workforce and the pressure on the white-collar jobs holders is eased out. Agriculture is the backbone of our country. In our country still around 65 per cent people depend on agriculture. Government should encourage the people for agriculture and agro-based industries should be developed even in rural areas. By doing so, migration of rural people towards the urban areas can be arrested. Irrigation plays a vital role in agricultural development. Government should start some effective irrigation schemes by which the rainfed farming can be covered under irrigation. Also the irrigation should be properly distributed so that each farmer can get the required amount of irrigation water. Agriculture can create the jobs for the landless labourers and also seasonally the people can get the work in the local areas. Check in rural people migration towards urban areas will ease the pressure on the urban cities. Economic growth of a country also affects the job market. When the resources are properly utilized and higher economic growth is achieved, it results in higher per capita income results in more saving and investments creating more employment opportunities. Also we absorve that many foreign firms are investing money in our country due to liberalisation of economy. Government should encourage the foreign countries to invest in our country so that more employment opportunities can be created for the Indian youths. India has the large amount of talented English speaking man power so it has become the choice of foreign companies to outsource their non-core business processes to our country. The Government is doing its level best to tackle the problem of unemployment; the youths should also change their mindset. There are lots of opportunities for those who think that they are daring and innovative. Money is not the problem as the banks are ready to give personal loans to enable the youths to start their own venture. With faith, hard work, dedication and perseverance, one can stop visiting the employment exchanges, tapping the doors of PSC and start giving jobs to others.
(The writers are: Dr. Banarsi Lal, Scientist and Head of KVK, Reasi and Dr. Pawan Sharma, Scientist at KVK, Kathua (Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology-Jammu)
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