- National unemployment rate sees sharp decline as offices, shops and self-employment avenues reopen after the Centre lifts nearly all lockdown curbs
- The improvement is because of a growth in casual work, and should not be interpreted as growth in formal sector, say analysts
NEW DELHI : India’s labour market showed surprising strength in the second week of June, restoring many jobs that were lost to the economic upheaval caused by the nationwide lockdown, and offering some substance to the hope that the worst may be over.
The national unemployment rate fell sharply to 11.63% in the week ended 14 June from 17.51% in the previous week, bringing the job loss rate closer to the levels prevailing before the lockdown, a survey by the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) found.
The improvement comes as offices, shops and self-employment avenues reopened after the government lifted nearly all lockdown curbs after more than two months. The ongoing summer crop planting season and the rural job guarantee plan also provided employment opportunities to people in the villages.
Consequently, the rural job loss rate saw a steeper drop than the overall unemployment figures, CMIE said, declining to 10.96% in the week to 14 June from 17.71% in the previous week. That compares with the job loss rate of 8.29% in rural India and 8.41% nationally in the week to 22 March, three days before the lockdown was implemented.