The employment offices set up across Madhya Pradesh have been able to provide jobs to only 21 men since April 2000 — out of 39 lakh registered unemployed people in the state. The shocking three-year figure was part of the government’s response to a question by Congress MLA Mevaram Jatav in the MP assembly on March 1. If the cost to run employment offices are factored in, that works out to an expenditure of Rs 80 lakh to employ a single person.
Since April 1, 2020, around Rs 16.74 crore was spent to operate of employment offices across 52 districts in Madhya Pradesh, where 37,80,679 educated and 1,12,470 uneducated applicants have been registered. But only 21 applicants were provided jobs in government offices and various corporations.
It was an explanation of sorts why even on a weekday morning, the employment office in Bhopal was deserted.
For a state where elections are due by the end of the year, the situation is less than ideal. The failure to generate jobs has been one of the perennial allegations against the state government from the opposition Congress.
“They are wasting money, taking loans and drinking ghee. The system has collapsed in Madhya Pradesh. This is not a government but a circus. Law and order do not mean anything here,” said Congress’s PC Sharma.
The BJP dismisses the Congress allegations, insisting that they are on course.
“For the fifth time Shivraj will be the chief minister… the Chief Minister has already replied in the House that there is no gap between our government’s promises and delivery. We are saying that we are giving employment. So you should get it checked,” BJP MLA Gaurishankar Bisen told NDTV.
On February 22, NDTV reported that more than 12 lakh candidates, including engineers and doctorate holders, have applied for roughly 6,000 patwari (land revenue official) positions in the state. Today, the candidates appeared for the written exam.
The government has promised to provide one lakh jobs by August 15. Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has said that the break-up is 7000 “patwari” posts, 15,700 posts for teachers, 2,600 for sub-engineers, 2,200 for forest guards and 7,500 posts in the police.
According to the unemployment figures presented in the monsoon session of the state assembly last year, there were over 25.8 lakh registered unemployed youths till April 1, 2022. The figure has jumped to 38,92,949 on 1 January 2023 – indicating that roughly 1.25 lakh people find themselves on the unemployment register every month.