On Saturday Lt Governor Manoj Sinha announced to end the unemployment issue in Jammu and Kashmir within five years. This assurance has come from the head of the government here saying that an employment policy is being framed by the administration to tide over the unemployment crisis.
Since the timeline has been fixed for five years the government needs to start on this ambitious project without even wasting a day. The issue of unemployment has assumed mammoth proportions. The crisis has deepened further owing to the Covid-19 pandemic that has meant huge losses for the few performing sectors here.
The pandemic and the months long lockdown has meant that the private sector is virtually witnessing a collapse as revenues across the board have witnessed a severe downslide.
As most sectors have continued to bleed over the past many months, some sectors have taken a severe hit. The tourism industry which is one of the main sources of employment here has remained defunct since August 5, 2019.
The Industry had some hopes of revival this year but the pandemic meant that all such hopes were dashed to the ground. The entire tourism Industry has over the past months witnessed loss of jobs to around four to five lakh people.
The tourism Industry has suffered irreversible loses and no revival is in sight for the next few months. The loses in the sector has meant that layoffs became a reality and most of the people associated with the trade facing crisis like situation.
The layoffs in the tourism Industry are just the tip of an iceberg. The situation is pretty bad in other sectors too. These sectors include the telecom, media, retail, manufacturing and various other key sectors that contribute towards jobs generation in a closed economy like ours.
Reports suggest that layoffs have been witnessed in telecom sector with major private players having asked most of their staff to stay home till the situation improves. The telecom sector was already under a lot of stress following the entry of a powerful brand which created a lot of competition among the already existing players who were forced to either cut down on call and internet charges or quit the market.
Similarly, the media industry in Kashmir too has been undergoing a stressful phase as the revenues in the sector have fallen dangerously. Media Industry in Kashmir which comprises several hundred newspapers published from Srinagar are generating employment to whole lot of reporters, editors, designers, distributors, hawkers and a chain of other people associated with the industry.
However, with the revenue touching negligible levels the sector too has already announced layoffs among its staff members. This situation has led to a crisis like scenario as the industry has to come out with its product on daily basis and the costs involved are forcing the owners to announce job cuts besides sticking to reduced salaries.
The situation on the job front is too alarming as the manufacturing and even the retail sector too has suffered immense loses. The result being that the coming few months will see a surge in the number of unemployed youth as no sector is in a position to announce any growth plans or employment avenues.
And as for the administration it seems that it is still not working on a contingency plan to address the issue as the situation can lead to a crisis that will be quite alarming and disastrous as well.