Following in the footsteps of Haryana, the Government of Himachal Pradesh is seriously planning to reserve 70 per cent jobs for local youth.
Unemployment has always been a concern for the state, mainly because the youth prefer to move out of the state in search of better pay and white-collar jobs, rather than work in the local industries. This has resulted in acute paucity of skilled labour in the state, which forces industries to recruit skilled labour from other regions, which they do at cheaper rates.
If it is made mandatory for industries to hire locals for their workforce, the problem of unemployment may be taken care of to some extent. However, the challenge is that most jobs in Himachal are in the tourism and agriculture/horticulture space, and these are mostly seasonal. When the tourism sector is going through a lean season, the youth shift to the agriculture/horticulture jobs. Therefore, it will not be easy to find youth ready to commit themselves to the industries throughout the year.
The department of labour and employment reveals that there were an alarming 8,49,701 unemployed youth in Himachal at the end of March, 2020. That means, about 12 per cent of the registered population of the state, comprising approx. 76,000 postgraduates and 1.35 lakh graduates are without jobs. There are also six lakh matriculates and undergraduates, 30,000 under matriculates and 6,230 illiterate youth in Himachal, of which a significant 44 per cent are women.
To add to these already worrying numbers, about 60,000 youngsters join the clan of job seekers annually, after completing their education.