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Unemployment rate falls: Isaac

Special Correspondent

Says unusual trend seen during the tenure of LDF government


NSSO survey shows fall in both rural and urban unemployment

‘Result of vibrant functioning of Kudumbasree and MGNREGS and stress on paddy farming'


THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Key indicators of employment and unemployment pertaining to Kerala, released recently by the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO), show the number of unemployed having come down in the State during the tenure of the previous government, according to T.M. Thomas Isaac, who held the post of Finance Minister then.

At a press conference here on Wednesday, Dr. Isaac said this was an unusual trend. The sample survey results, released every five years, had never before shown the problem of unemployment easing in Kerala.

The results of the 66th round of survey by the NSSO indicated that rural unemployment had come down from 15.8 per cent in 2004-05 to 9 per cent in 2009-10, he said.

In the urban areas, it came down from 19.9 per cent in 2004-05 to 8.3 per cent in 2009-10.

In the rural areas, 8.3 per cent of the grownup male population was unemployed as per the 2004-05 sample survey. This proportion diminished to 3.8 per cent as per the 2009-10 sample survey. And in the urban areas, the unemployment rate among men decreased from 9 per cent to 3.4 per cent during the five-year period, Dr. Isaac said. Among rural women, the unemployment rate decreased from 30.9 per cent to 21 per cent and among urban women, from 42.9 per cent to 19.8 per cent during the same period.

Dr. Isaac noted that the growth rate of the economy had been above the national average in Kerala since 1987. This trend gained strength during the last five years when the Left Democratic Front (LDF) was in power in the State. Consequently, Kerala was now fourth from the top in the order of States in the matter of per capita income of the people.

He said employment participation, which was 34.3 per cent in the rural areas in the State in 2004-05, increased to 35.3 per cent in 2009-10. It increased from 32.9 per cent to 34.4 per cent during the same period in the urban areas.

However, while employment participation in the State was 54.4 per cent in the case of men, it was only 17.5 per cent in the case of women, according to the latest sample survey results.

Dr. Isaac attributed this happy trend to the vibrant functioning of the Kudumbasree movement, national employment guarantee scheme, and the stress given to traditional industries and paddy cultivation during the tenure of the LDF government.

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