Source: The Hitavada      Date: 07 Aug 2018 14:04:34

HOW difficult employment scenario is in our country, can be understood from the statement of harsh reality made by senior Union Minister Mr. Nitin Gadkari. He has said in unequivocal terms that mere reservations would not guarantee jobs to the people since the country is facing an unprecedented job crunch. Jobs are shrinking and declaration of quotas based on community-basis would not actually be any assurance that jobs would be available to every member of the communities who have garnered certain quota for themselves. 

Nobody can challenge the statement of a mature minister like Mr. Gadkari. He has realised that jobs have been shrinking in the country over the past few years. This observation is supported by a huge body of evidence on the ground. For the past few years, the country’s private engineering colleges have been witnessing an ever-shrinking queues for admissions, so much so that many a college has even closed down all over the country.

To make matters worse, polytechnics also are facing a similar fate. As a result, the people with to avoid engineering or technical education. For, that jobs are shrinking in numbers is one side of the story, but that existing jobs, too, pay much less than they used to a few years earlier, is another part of the story. In the next few years, the situation may travel to such a low point that a job of just Rs. 5,000/- a month would be considered good.

In such a condition, all the agitation for reservations based on caste may prove to be exercises in futility. For, when the job market is shrinking, and when emoluments, too, are getting lesser and lesser, reservations would have no value. For, in that case, what will matter more is the person’s ability to garner a job for himself or herself on the basis of quality and not on the basis of caste. Corporate India, in that case, will have to get tough on selection of candidates for jobs in its domain.

The World Economic Forum (WEF) at Davos in Switzerland two years ago had expressed very serious concerns about the employment situation in the time of fourth industrial revolution that has already got started say six-seven years ago. The WEF warned that only the better than the very best alone would survive while the rest would perish. Thus, the stress on being the better than the best will be the deciding factor.

India stands at a critical cross-roads, thus. For, thanks to its current condition of education, it has stopped insisting upon turning out students who would be better than the best. When the quality of education is sinking -- thanks to many factors -- it is only futile to expect reservations would guarantee jobs. The difficulty, therefore, is with the larger society whose youngsters are finding themselves unemployable in a shockingly vast majority. In such a condition, it would be only expecting too much to provide an assurance to the youngsters that reservations would ensure jobs. While responding to a question on the agitation of the Maratha community for reservations, Mr. Gadkari pointed out so many stated or unstated realities.

If this is the reality, the Indian society will have to evolve an altogether different strategy to meet the demands of more jobs being available in the society. But no matter those details, it is obvious that when the jobs are shrinking and more people are asking for employment, only the better than the best would survive. The rest will have to cool their heels until new opportunity crops up. Obviously, in such a condition, individual Indians will have to spruce up their personalities, acquire more knowledge, and develop appropriate skill sets, including people’s skill.It is true that mere reservation would serve no end in particular. To that extent, Mr. Gadkari is more than right in stressing that mere reservation would not guarantee jobs.