One challenge Narendra Modi might not be able to defeat in 2019: report

Mumbai: Prime Minister Narendra Modi undoubtedly continues his winning streak even after completing more than three years in the office when most of the governments go on back foot to defend onslaught from the opposition parties. It is the time when opposition parties try to nail the government from all directions by exposing its weaknesses and failures in fulfilling election-time promises.
In Modi’s case, it was creation of hundreds of thousands of new jobs, the big-bang poll-time promise. In the past, media reports have claimed that the young and the unemployed voters formed the major chunk who had voted for the BJP in the 2014 general elections in the hope that Modi will end the perennial problem of unemployment.
Modi had also promised that his government will set up 100 smart cities to prevent influx and exodus of large number of people from one city to another in search of job. The project has already been accelerated.
The ‘Make In India’ campaign was launched to give the required push to the manufacturing and heavy industries sector, and subsequently to create hundreds of thousands new jobs. According to media reports, the Modi government hopes to create 100 million new jobs by 2022.
On his part, the Prime Minister has tried his level best to live up to most of his poll-time promises by implementing sweeping policy changes. He had promised that he will curb black money, hence, he scrapped legal tender status of Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 denomination notes. The policy initiative has increased India’s tax revenues and widens tax base. It has also brought more number of taxpayers to the tax net.
The Mid Year Economic Survey and the jobs data
The second tranche of Economic Survey for 2016-17 has highlighted that even after three years of Narendra Modi government, there is lack of reliable jobs data. A report in The Economic Times says, “Employment situation seems to have worsened during Modi’s term. According to various estimates, fewer jobs are being created than people entering the job market.”
“The debate on the measurement issues on employment and unemployment estimates has been ongoing for some time. The lack of reliable estimates on employment in recent years has impeded its measurement and thereby the Government faces challenges in adopting appropriate policy interventions,” wrote chief economic adviser Arvind Subramanian who authored the Economic Survey report.
The Modi government has taken a number of steps to reduce the rate of unemployment in country and at the same time it has undertaken a slew of measures to increase number of jobs. The government has launched various programs for skill development and also facilitated issuance of loans for small and medium businesses.
However, the ET report adds, “The government has launched several schemes β€” from skill enhancement to business loans β€” to promote entrepreneurship. But by most accounts, unemployment has become a big issue in India today.”

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