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India Labour and Employment Report 2014

The India Labour and Employment Report (ILER) 2014 prepared by Institute for Human Development (IHD) and the Indian Society of Labour Economics was released by Union Minister of Rural Development, Mr. Jairam Ramesh, who was also the Chief Guest on this occasion on 15 December 2013 at New Delhi. Professor Deepak Nayyar, former Vice Chancellor of Delhi University chaired the release function. Ms. Tine Staermose, Director, ILO Decent Work Team for South Asia and Country office for India addressed the gathering on behalf of the Ms. Sandra Polaski, Deputy Director General, International Labour organization, who could not join the release. It was followed by comments by Dr. Simon Deakin, Professor, Faculty of Law, University of Cambridge and Dr. C. Rammanohar Reddy, Editor, Economic and Political Weekly. The Report was released amidst a distinguished gathering of eminent experts, scholars, civil-society representatives, policy-makers, representatives of the international organizations and development practitioners. The preparation of this Report was supported by International Development Research Centre (IDRC).

Professor Alakh N. Sharma, Director, Institute for Human Development while presenting the ILER 2014 said that the first report provides an overview of the labour and employment scenario in India during the last two decades after globalisation. Based on latest data, the Report succinctly brings out the emerging pattern of labour market outcomes and challenges of employment. It assesses the gains and losses for labour in the first round of globalisation during last two decades. The central message of the report endorses that a responsive, fair and comprehensive labour and employment policy is vital for sustainable and inclusive development. He also informed that the Report is planned to be brought out by IHD biennially, and the ILER 2014 is the first in the series.

Mr. Jairam Ramesh, congratulated IHD and Professor Sharma for bringing out a first class Report on employment which was very timely. In his address he expressed his concern about why small scale manufacturing never took off in India while Bangladesh is ahead of India in garment manufacturing. He also said that there is lack of flexibility in leading entrepreneurs to invest in capital intensive and not labour intensive industries. He further argued that migration should be encouraged for employment generation. It is important that there should be no barriers to migration by youth. The minister said that the report will inform policy in a big way.

Reflecting on the report, Dr. Arjan de Haan of IDRC said, India is the world’s 2nd largest emerging economy, with 15 % of the global labour force, a very good growth record over the last two decades. Yet 92 % of its workers are still engaged in informal employment, working without contract, no social protection, and with sub-standard productivity. 276 million workers live below a poverty line of $2 per day, and their bargaining posi.5tions have declined as the economy grows. This India Labour and Employment Report 2014 provides an excellent description of this astonishing reality, and – at least as important – identifies options for addressing this reality, highlighting urgent needs for job creation in and by the private sector, balancing expansion of the number of jobs with enhancing job quality, and improving the skills and capabilities of workers. We at IDRC hope and trust that this excellent report prepared by the Institute for Human Development will give a much-needed push to help address these urgent challenges.

Prof. Deepak Nayyar is concluding remarks The chairperson in his concluding remarks said, “ the pattern of structural change has been opposite to conventional expectations” he raised the question, “ Should workers go to jobs or jobs go to workers?”


The Pioneer, 25 June 2014, Ranchi




The Pioneer, 26 June 2014, Ranchi



Without jobs, India's demographic dividend will be a disaster

Alakh N. Sharma, 12 February 2014, Times of India



Poverty higher among employed than unemployed: report

Alakh N. Sharma, 19 December 2013, The Hindu



Want flexibility in NREGA, objectives not met in states: Ramesh

zeenews.india.com, 15 December 2014



Want flexibility in Nrega, objectives not met in states: Jairam Ramesh

Livemint.com, 15 December 2013



Want flexibility in NREGA, objectives not met in states

Millennium post, 16 December 2013


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