Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram today (Saturday, March 9) hit out at the centre over alleged lack of job creation, saying the three main issues in the upcoming Lok Sabha election would be jobs, jobs and jobs.

“What is worse, not creating jobs or lying about creation of jobs? Chidambaram asked in a tweet alleging that the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government was guilty in both of them. He added that “The top three issues in the Lok Sabha election would be jobs, jobs and jobs.”

“Glad that CII (Confederation of Indian Industry) has found its voice and has exposed the government’s bogus claims on jobs creation. Hopes that others also will speak up,” Chidambaram tweeted.

The CII had on Wednesday expressed concern over the country’s job market amid growing challenges of making a generation employment-ready. However, it had on Thursday said the recent reforms ushered in by the government were creating new livelihoods across existing and emerging sectors.

Earlier, the National Sample Survey Office’s Periodic Labour Force Survey had recorded the unemployment rate in India at a 45-year-high of 6.1% in 2017-’18. Modi government, however, had refused to release it saying the report needed to be authenticated and was being checked.

The report showed that the unemployment rate among the youth was at a higher level compared to previous years and “much higher compared to that in the overall population”.

The rate of unemployment among men in rural areas between the ages of 15 and 29 years jumped to 17.4% in 2017-’18 compared to 5% in 2011-’12. The unemployment rate among women in rural areas stood at 13.6% in 2017-’18 compared to 4.8% in 2011-’12, according to the survey.

Rate of unemployed youth in urban areas was higher than in rural areas – 18.7% for men and 27.2% for women in 2017-’18. On the other hand NITI Aayog had objected to the report saying, the data reported still under process and it was not the final.

Another report says that the unemployment rate in India rose to 7.2 percent in February 2019, the highest since September 2016, and up from 5.9 percent in February 2018, according to data compiled by the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) that was released on Tuesday.