A government official checks the papers of job aspirants for registration at an employment exchange office in Ahmedabad, February 19, 2016.
NEW DELHINEW DELHI (Reuters) – An official survey that has been withheld by the government shows India’s unemployment rate rose to its highest level in at least 45 years in 2017/18, the Business Standard newspaper reported on Thursday, delivering a blow to Prime Minister Narendra Modi months before a general election.
A political controversy over the survey erupted after the acting chairman and another member of the body that reviewed the jobs data resigned, saying there had been a delay in its scheduled December release and alleging interference by other state agencies.
The assessment by the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO), conducted July 2017-June 2018, showed an unemployment rate of 6.1 percent. That was the highest since 1972/73, the period for which the data are comparable, the newspaper reported, citing documents it had reviewed. It did not give a figure for 1972/73.