07:00 GMT26 September 2020
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    In the face of criticism for not generating an adequate number of jobs, the Narendra Modi government is expected to announce a cruise policy soon to increase the docking of cruise vessels at Indian ports by at least six times in the next few years to create new jobs.

    New Delhi (Sputnik) Despite having a 7,500-kilometers coastline and 111 waterways, India attracts only 0.5% of global cruise tourists last year. This low turnout of global tourists at Indian cruise destinations is despite the Narendra Modi government implementing attractive schemes like e-visa, e-landing and incentives like a minimum rebate of 30% on all cruise vessel-related charges and an additional rebate of 25% for coastal cruise movement.

    “With India having the potential to cater to 700 cruise ships per year as against 158 handled this year, the cruise industry can generate more than 2.5 lakh jobs for one million cruise passengers, giving a big boost to the country’s economy,” Nitin Gadkari, India’s Minister for Ports and Waterways, said.

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi is under severe political pressure for the rising unemployment in the country. Modi had promised 10 million jobs every year to the youth but has generated only 789,000 jobs from eight key sectors of the economy in comparison to 1,672,000 jobs created between 2011 and 2013. Manufacturing, construction, trade, transport, accommodation and restaurants, IT/BPO, education and health are considered the eight key sectors of the economy.

    Automation is creating another concern for youths seeking employment in the service sector which contributes around 55% in GDP. Last week, country’s top IT firm Infosys announced that it had released 11,000 jobs last year due to automation.

    A recent OECD report said that over 30% Indian youth aged 15-29 are not in employment, education or training; more than double of China. After having failed to counter criticism with the available jobs data, finance minister Arun Jaitley dismissed talk of "jobless growth" and contended that the government's critics had coined the fashionable phrase to run down its achievements.

    “We have tried to give a new perspective to employment as it is not possible to provide employment to everyone in a country of 125 crore people. We are promoting self-employment and the government has made eight crore people self-employed,” Amit Shah, the president of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party, said.

    Resentment against the lack of job opportunities, however, is evident from agitations underway across the country. Now, the government has directed country’s top policy-making body NITI Aayog to come out with the reliable employment data as soon as possible.


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