From that period to now, data from the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy
shows that unemployment is lower than a year ago, after a big jump during the lockdown (chart 2). But a critical point about the job scene in India is the low labour force participation (LFP), and the PLFS’ latest round underlines this. Chart 3 shows less than 50 per cent of the working-age group works or wants to work. The LFP is not rising significantly.
LFP across economic sectors gives another insight, which, to some extent, is expected. The share of manufacturing in the workforce has been declining (chart 4) over the five tranches of quarterly PLFS data. Manufacturing output also declined in that period.
The next two charts show the state-wise status of two indicators discussed above: Labour force participation and unemployment. One of the poorest states in India, Bihar has only a quarter of its population in the labour force. The Opposition parties in the state are thus promising a million jobs to the populace in the upcoming polls. Tamil Nadu and West Bengal have the best LFP among states, chart 5 shows.
While industrialised states show a lower rate of joblessness, Kerala stood at the bottom there, chart 6 reveals.