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51 per cent of Indian workforce self-employed: Survey

51 per cent of Indian workforce self-employed: Survey

India's chief statistician TCA Anant said salaried employees or workers with regular wages were nearly 6 times more in urban areas than in rural areas.

Bangalore: Around 51 per cent of Indian workers are self-employed, mostly in rural areas, while 33.5 per cent of them are casual labour (33.5 per cent) and only 15.6 per cent have salaried employment, an official survey revealed Thursday.

"Among workers in rural areas, 54.2 per cent are self-employed as against 41.1 per cent in urban areas and 38.6 per cent work as casual labour as against 17.5 per cent in urban areas," India's chief statistician TCA Anant told reporters in Bangalore.

Releasing the latest socio-economic study conducted by the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO) of the ministry of statistics and programme implementation from July 2011 to June 2012, Anant said salaried employees or workers with regular wages were nearly six times more in urban areas (41.4 per cent) than 7.3 per cent in rural areas, showing the wide disparity in the employment comfort level of the workforce across the country.

"The survey on employment and unemployment is meant to estimate the labour force participation rate, worker population ration and unemployment rate and assess their activity to identify the pattern of household expenditure and consumption," Anant, who is also secretary of the ministry, said on the occasion.

The survey was carried in 7,469 villages and 5,268 urban blocks spanning districts and states across the country, covering about 101,724 households, including 59,700 in rural and 42,024 in urban areas.

"The survey also indicated a three per cent employment growth from January 2010 to January 2012, with 13.9 million (1.39 crore) people joining the workforce across the country, resulting in 472.9 million (47.29 crore) people employed in 2011-12 as against 459 million (45.9 crore) in 2009-10," NSSO additional director-general Samiran Malik said.

Of the total (472.9 million) employed in 2011-12, 234.6 million were men and 101.8 million women in rural areas and 109.2 million men and 27.3 million women in urban areas.

In contrast, of the total 459 million in 2009-10, 231.9 million men and 104.5 million women were in rural areas and 99.8 million men and 22.8 million women were in urban areas.

Though the national sample survey (NSS) is conducted every five years (quinquennially) with the previous survey from July 2009 to June 2010, the ministry has decided to do it midway to asses the impact of global recession and financial crisis in 2008-2010 on the Indian economy, employment and incomes.

"The survey has been a regular exercise every five years to collect data for the Planning Commission and other user agencies to formulate plan periods and socio-economic programmes for inclusive growth and improve the quality of life in rural and urban areas," Anant said.

The study also revealed that the average wage or salary in urban areas at Rs 365 per day is higher than in rural areas at Rs 232, with men paid Rs 377 and women Rs 309 in urban areas, while it is Rs 249 for men and Rs 156 for women in rural areas.

"The latest survey shows that the male-female wage ratio is 0.82 in urban areas and 0.63 in rural areas," Anant pointed out.

Similarly, daily wages for casual labour in urban areas for non-public works is Rs122 as against Rs93 in rural areas. The pattern repeats in average wage per day for urban men and women (Rs132 & Rs77)and their rural counterparts (Rs102 & Rs69).

"About 40 per cent of population constitutes labour force, with 41 per cent of them in rural areas and 37 per cent in urban areas. The labour force participation rate is 56 per cent for men and 23 per cent for women," NSSO director-general and chief executive Vijay Kumar said.

Of the 1.21-billion people in the country, the worker population ratio is 39 per cent at the national level, with 40 per cent in rural areas and 36 per cent in urban areas.

In the worker population ratio, 54 per cent are men and 22 per cent women in urban and rural areas.

first published:June 21, 2013, 02:26 IST