Joblessness in Chhattisgarh is running at a seven year high of 6% of the 15 plus work force higher than national average of 5%. Over a fourth of working people are employed for less than a year in the state and 75% of households are earning up to only Rs 10,000 per month, according to a new employment and unemployment report of the ministry of labour bureau. Over 70% people in the state with population of over 2.8 crore are struggling a lot to live their life with basic facilities like proper food, shelter and clothes. Expectedly urban areas continue to provide more as well as better paying jobs in comparison to the rural areas.
In urban parts of the state, 80% get year-round jobs and in rural areas, just 54% of the people get year round jobs and manage to get such security. About 45% of workers in the rural belts work for less than 12 months in a year, a result of dependence on seasonal agricultural works and government schemes. Also the reductions of funds in Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) have also affected the jobs of villagers to a large extent. Another surprising element is that 78% of the rural households across Chhattisgarh end up with an average monthly income of less than Rs 10,000. In urban areas too, about half of the households earn between 10,000 and 30,000 per month. It clearly shows that a continuation of a distressing job situation and hence economic status-that was reflected in earlier reports like 68th round of NSSO and socio-economic census in 2013-14.  To come out from this problem or reduce the figures, now it should be necessary for central as well as state government to come up with some new plans and steps.
The employment of women continues to inactive with over 12% without jobs. Comparison to previous reports the unemployment rate rise from about 4.2% in 2012 to 4.7% in 2014. This was a period of relative economic slowdown as compared to earlier in the decade. But growth has been recorded at 7.5% in 2015-16-yet the jobs situation has worsened. This would be mostly farmers, shopkeepers and enterprise powers. But the low economic level of this section is revealed by the fact that 82% of such households had a monthly income of less than 10,000   rupees. The maximum unemployment and jobless like situation have been noticed at districts of Bastar as well as Surguja divisions. Although these districts are rich in minerals and many prominent minerals like iron ore and coal are available in this region in plenty but still industrialists and enterprise do not want to set up manufacturing units in these areas owing to naxal activities and lack of transport and other things.
‘Along with Naxal activities, roads and other transport mediums of these areas are also poor and it would not be possible for any enterprise or industrial unit to run its industry at these areas in this difficult situation. So they do not want to open manufacturing units here. Also in government jobs too, lack of education and unawareness also block of dreams of youths in the areas to acquire a decent job at their own native place’ said Satish Kumar, member of Chhattisgarh Chambers of Industries. Regular wage or salary earning households make up just 20% of all, although this is the kind of work that pays more than 48% of people earning more than 10,000 rupees. Dr Santosh Jain, economist said that the situation is really not satisfied and have to take decisions in industrial, manufacturing and economic sector to create secure jobs for people with different qualifications. ‘We have to take some necessary steps and tie up with multinational companies and others to make the state industrial wise so that more and more numbers of jobs will open for youngsters.

*By – Mandira Sinha