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At least 12 states, UTs saw high unemployment in September against nationwide decline

Delhi and Jammu and Kashmir saw particular spikes in unemployment rates in September, which may be a cause for concern
Last Updated 19 October 2021, 03:21 IST

Eight states in India showed double-digit unemployment in September defying the decline in nationwide joblessness which was under 7 per cent, according to data by the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE).

Delhi's unemployment rate touched a four-month high of 16.8 per cent in September, after rising steadily during this period.

Meanwhile, Jammu and Kashmir, with a 21.6 per cent joblessness rate, touched an eight-month high. The government has come under fire from opposition parties for high unemployment numbers for promoting a growth and development-centric narrative in the UT since the abrogation of its special status.

Other states with high unemployment rates are Bihar (10 per cent), Haryana (20.3 per cent), Jharkhand (13.5 per cent), Rajasthan (17.9 per cent), Puducherry (11.2 per cent) and Tripura (15.3 per cent).

The trend revealed in this data can be broadly attributed to the K-shaped recovery which our economy is experiencing after the pandemic, Jyoti Prakash Gadia, MD of investment banking firm Resurgent India, told DH. "Sectors like IT and Pharma have gained because of digitisation and an emphasis on health care to cope up with imperatives of Covid-19, while other sectors suffered heavily," he said.

States/UTs Unemployment rate in September (%) August July June May
Delhi 16.8 11.6 10.7 8.8 45.6
Haryana 20.3 35.7 28.1 27.8 28.7
Jammu and Kashmir 21.6 13.6 15.4 10.6 11.9
Jharkhand 13.5 16 9.4 12.7 16
Puducherry 11.2 8.6 9.6 47.1 24
Rajasthan 17.9 26.7 21.1 26.3 27.6
Tripura 15.3 15.6 13.3 9.6 19.9
Bihar 10 13.6 13 10.5 13.8

Gadia added that as a part of the revival effort, spending on infrastructure and credit boost to MSME is helping the economy. "All this has to lead to the creation of new jobs and revival of old jobs in these sectors and the eight states having a lesser concentration of such sectors have been left in a backward position on the employment front," he said.

Even though Haryana and Jharkhand showed high numbers, they actually saw a fall in unemployment rates from 35.7 per cent and 16 per cent in August respectively. Rajasthan’s tally is also lower than the previous month.

Odisha, Meghalaya and Gujarat had unemployment rates under 3 per cent, with Gujarat having the lowest among all states at 1.3 per cent.

India’s employment situation, already frail, was further wrecked by the Covid-19 pandemic. After coronavirus hit in March 2020, India’s unemployment rate in April and May was as high as 23 per cent and 21.7 per cent. Moreover, the second wave of the pandemic brought more bad news as nearly 32 lakh salaried Indians lost their jobs in July.

Even as it has been contained in September at 6.9 per cent, marginally lower than August, it remains a cause to worry. The rate as of October 17 is slightly higher, at 7.3 per cent.

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(Published 18 October 2021, 10:21 IST)

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