The head of the government-funded National Statistical Commission PC Mohanan said Wednesday that he and colleague J Meenakshi were unhappy at the non-publication of jobs data that had been due for release in December and alleged interference by other state agencies over backdated GDP data.
The delay in its release of the report led to two National Statistical Commission (NSC) members, including the acting chairman, resigning from their posts earlier this week alleging the government had withheld the release despite its approval by the NSC.
The data showed that the Indian economy grew at an average of only 6.67 per cent in the nine years through 31 March 2014 (UPA tenure), slower than the 7.35 per cent achieved in the four years through 31 March 2018 (NDA tenure).
It also said that unemployment was higher in the urban areas (7.8 per cent) than in the rural areas (5.3 per cent). "The results of the PLFS will be brought out in the form of an Annual Key Report, which would contain detailed tables for both rural and urban sectors, and quarterly bulletins, which would contain, for the urban sector, estimates of the changes in key labour force parameters", according to the NSSO website. That was the highest since 1972/73, the period for which the data are comparable, the newspaper reported, citing documents it had reviewed.
The government has questioned the report, saying it was "not verified". "Only a man who hasn't ever held a proper job & is totally jobless can peddle such #FakeNews!", the ruling party said on Twitter.
The government is set to step up rural welfare spending by 16 per cent for the fiscal year beginning April to Rs 1.3 lakh crore ($18.25 billion), two government sources said, aiming to boost support in the countryside where more than two-thirds of the country's 1.3 billion people live. I am certain, jobless growth is what we are witnessing now.More news: Norfolk weather: Fog descends as snow and ice warnings continue
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This data was collected by the NSSO between July 2017 and June 2018 - and is the first official survey that at the country's employment situation after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the demonetisation of high-value currency notes in November 2016.
After the chaotic launch of Goods and Services Tax (GST) in July 2017, hundreds of thousands have lost jobs in small businesses.
"The CPI (M) demands that all data must be released immediately".
As the 2019 elections are approaching, PM Modi has been gheraoed by the Opposition and the youths of the country demanding jobs, but the government has been mending its ways over it.
"It's a very, very serious issue, and that is the reason why the government didn't want this data to come out in the public domain", said former finance minister Yashwant Sinha. Unemployment is at its highest in 45 yrs. 6.5 Cr youth are jobless in 2017-18 alone. "They will definitely find a place in this budget, like agriculture, employment and the middle class".