NEW DELHI: A war of words erupted on Thursday between the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) over the leaked job creation report card. In a scathing attack on the Narendra Modi-led government, Congress president Rahul Gandhi said that the data revealed a “National Disaster”. In reaction, the BJP quickly responded and termed it as “#FakeNews!”
According to a newspaper report quoting a government survey, India’s unemployment rate rose to a 45-year high during 2017-2018. The assessment by the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO) conducted between July 2017-June 2018, showed the unemployment rate stood at 6.1 per cent, the highest since 1972-73, the newspaper reported.
Citing the report, the Congress president tweeted: “NoMo Jobs! The Fuhrer promised us 2 crore jobs a year. 5 years later, his leaked job creation report card reveals a National Disaster. Unemployment is at its highest in 45 years. 6.5 crore youth are jobless in 2017-18 alone. Time for NoMo2Go. #HowsTheJobs”
(Image: Rahul Gandhi/Twitter)
In reply to his tweet, the BJP said: “It’s clear that he has inherited Mussolini’s shortsightedness and has myopic understanding of issues. EPFO’s real data shows sharp increase in jobs, created in just the last 15 months. Only a man who hasn’t ever held a proper job & is totally jobless can peddle such #FakeNews!”
The survey has become a political issue after the acting chairman and another member of the body that reviewed the job data
+ saying there was delay in its release.
The head of the government-funded National Statistical Commission PC Mohanan said on 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.
India’s economy has been expanding by 7 per cent plus annually — the fastest pace among major economies — but the uneven growth has meant there are not enough jobs created for millions of young Indians entering the workforce each year. This has put pressure on Modi as he seeks to retain power in a general election due by May.
Earlier this month, the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy, a leading independent think-tank, said the country lost as many as 11 million jobs last year.
(With inputs from Reuters)