In an interview with Livemint, Adi Godrej, chairman of Godrej Group, stated that shortage of jobs is a manufactured perception created by opponent parties. Praising the economic policies of Modi government, Adi Godrej added that policies helped the economy to grow at a fast pace. “We will grow at 10%, in my view, if we did not have restrictions,” said Godrej pointing at the need of further liberalization.
When asked about the ‘increase in purchasing power but declining job opportunity’, Adi Godrej firstly refuted such reports and went on to add, “I think our measurement of income and employment is still not very good. It is not good at all. So, I don’t think anybody who needs work is not able to get one. So, it is a question of not being able to get what you want. In fact, there is a shortage of people. All sorts of people—doctors, nurses, teachers. To my mind, this is a wrong perception. Generally, it is a political perception created by the opposition. Otherwise, you would not be the fastest growing economy in the world.”
There are various agencies which measure unemployment with entirely different methodologies leading to different conclusions. The comparison of the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO)’s Periodic Labor Force Survey (PLFS) findings with Employment-Unemployment Surveys (EUS) has shown a large jump in unemployment in the country under Modi government. However, at the same time, the 2017 data published by International Labor Organization (ILO), a UN agency suggests that India’s unemployment rate stood at 3.5% in 2017 (3.3% for males and 4.2% for females), much lower than the global average of 5.4%.
The PLFS data and EUS data cannot be compared as both of these use completely different methods of data collection. To quote an article by NITI Aayog CEO, Amitabh Kant, “The PLFS estimates India’s total population in 2017-18 to be lower than the EUS 2011-12. If we were to accept all such comparisons at face value, we should also be having the headline that India’s population declines in the last 6 years.”
But there is no case of a population decline and almost all official estimates have acknowledged that population in the last 6 years have increased only. On the other hand, the PLFS data estimates that the level of urbanization in the country in 2017-18 is same as 2011-12. Again every credible organization including NASA’s satellite imaginary has shown exponential growth in urbanization in the country.
Again when asked about the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC), the chairman of Godrej Group urged, “It is a good move. But, it is not being implemented as well as it could have been. That is not perhaps for lack of trying but it is also our legal system and legislation.”
Similarly, on the issue of GST, Adi Godrej continued, “Our earlier taxation policies were ridiculous. We had indirect taxation at state level, central level and at the local level. GST has made it much simpler. GST is one of the things, which I would feel is well implemented. GST Council has been formed and they take decisions. If there is something that’s been discovered and needs improvement, they do it quickly. I would say, it has been well implemented.”
Not to forget that Adi Godrej is not the only business tycoon to praise the economic policy of the Modi government. PM Modi has taken many path-breaking steps to modernise the Indian economy. The steps include demonetization, GST and IBC. The Modi government has been able to take forward the economic development along with the development of the people at the grass-root level. Also, steps like the construction of toilets, Ujjawala Yojna etc. have received praises from the corporate leaders and people across the political spectrum.