On Tuesday, news emerged that Engineering and MBA graduates and postgraduates from Tamil Nadu are in the race to bag the work of sweepers and sanitary workers in the Tamil Nadu Assembly Secretariat. This comes just a few days after India learned that the country's unemployment rate stands at 6.1 percent in 2017-18, a 45-year high according to the National Sample Survey Office's (NSSO) periodic labour force survey (PLFS).
According to IANS, many Diploma holders, too, are fighting it out for the posts of sweeper (10 vacancies) and sanitary worker (four vacancies) in Tamil Nadu. On September 26, 2018, the Assembly Secretariat sought applications for the posts. The only qualification was that the aspiring candidates should be able-bodied. The minimum age limit was 19 years while the maximum age differs.
The Tamil Nadu Assembly Secretariat has received a total of 4,607 applications, including from the Employment Exchange. Of this, 677 applicants were rejected while the balance have fulfilled the eligibility criteria.
These jobs provide a salary between Rs 15,700 and Rs. 50,000 per month.
This trend, however, is not new in the state. In 2018, TNM had reported that 992 PhD holders, 23,000 MPhil holders, 2.5 lakh post-graduates and eight lakh graduates appeared for TNPSC’s Group-4 level posts.
This level had 9,500 posts for grabs, including employment as typists, Village Administrative officers (VAO) and stenographers. Jobs that come from writing the Class 4 exam provides a minimum salary of only Rs 5,200.
When TNM had reached out to experts who coach aspirants for the TNPSC and UPSC exams, they observed that this trend was understandable and stemmed from the need for job security.
"There are no jobs available for graduates anymore. They know that in a government job, they at least have an opportunity for growth once they get it and they cannot simply be retrenched or removed as the case is with private companies," said P Balaji, who conducts free coaching for students in Chennai and Puducherry.
(With inputs from IANS)