SRINAGAR: Jammu & Kashmir recorded the highest unemployment rate at the end of 2020, as per a survey which further stated that it was the worst year ever, in which the unemployment rate went up to 17.8 per cent. The Periodic Labour Force Survey (PLFS) for quarter 3rd of the present financial year, revealed that Jammu & Kashmir remained the worst affected during the period, followed by Kerala, Jharkhand and Gujarat. But in a survey conducted by CMIE, the unemployment rate of J&K for 2020-21 has gone below that of Delhi, Goa, Haryana and Rajasthan which was very high earlier.As per Mumbai-based Centre for Monitoring Indian economy (CMIE), it is significant considering the fact that J&K has put up such a stunning performance on the job front at a time when the entire country, including the Union Territory of J&K was reeling under COVID-19 pandemic. In February 2021, LG Manoj Sinha made it clear that the administration is very much concerned about the current unemployment problem in Jammu & Kashmir, focusing on providing job opportunities to 80 per cent of youth within the next five years. “My aim is to reach out and engage about 80 per cent of the young population of Jammu & Kashmir within the next five years and make it possible for them to be an engine of growth for overall socio-economic transformation of the UT,” he added.On the other side, Kashmir Chamber of Commerce & Industries, in its preliminary report, suggested that since August 2019, five lakh job losses were recorded in Kashmir region only, post abrogation of Article 370 followed by lockdown to combat COVID pandemic. On national level, the second wave of COVID-19 and resultant lockdowns impacted over 75 lakh jobs, taking the unemployment rate to a four-month high of 8 per cent, the CMIE said.Though several urban salaried employees lost jobs, the urban jobless rate declined to 8.3 per cent in July from 10.7 per cent in June. Earlier, CMIE had suggested that in general, urban males lost more jobs in comparison to females during the second wave of the pandemic. It implied a total loss of livelihood for millions of Indian households. Nearly 19 lakh people lost jobs in August with manufacturing, according to the latest employment data released by a private research firm. The Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) figures revealed that the unemployment rate had climbed to 8.32 per cent in August after a brief spell of improvement. The latest unemployment rate is similar to the post-lockdown figure of 8.35 per cent recorded by CMIE around this time last year.According to CMIE data, the number of employed persons decreased from 39.97 crore in July to 39.78 crore in August, which indicates that 19 lakh people lost their jobs over the past month. Nationwide, the unemployment rate had dipped in June and July but edged up again in August. Officials attribute higher unemployment rate due to lack of avenues in the private sector. “Apart from mid-scale private sector enterprises, there are no high-end companies and MNCs operating in J&K, due to which jobs are scarce. Youngsters see Government jobs as the only sustainable future prospects for them given the prevailing situation. Further, there are about 1 lakh youth working as daily-wages workers in different government departments and seeking regularisation of their services,” said a senior official, adding, “For past two years, the tourism sector of J&K has also been dull due to the situation.”
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