We, as Indian citizens, often crib about unemployment. Earlier, I used to think that it’s a result of lethargy on our part, but now, I notice more, and hence, I criticize more. People who endorse the view that we cannot compare ourselves with the UK or the US may be right when they consider the dates of birth of the countries, but the truth is: the devil lies in the details. The shift in my point of view is a result of noticing that it is sheer inactivity on the part of people we are required to ‘obey’. Creating a world record in Yoga was perhaps more important, because we are not inspired enough to create another world record in, say, having among the highest growth rate of employment, or something even remotely similar. Not that I have anything against Yoga..I was one of the supporters of the International Yoga day, literally and otherwise. But the fact remains that we choose to resort to our ‘culture’ to show the world that we exist. But why is it that we forget to pay attention to our ‘work culture’?
Now that I am part of the ‘market’, I realise that the ‘opportunities’ that are available are abysmal at best. A law student, for instance, has immense opportunities available: litigation, judicial services, judicial clerkship, law firm jobs, and higher studies (I’ll leave JAG out). But there are a few dealbreakers, or ‘blocks’, as I’d like to call them, which cause unemployment. Time for analysis. Firstly, law firms recruit only the toppers, when they visit campuses, often ignoring somebody who may be brighter than a topper. Law is about logic (or so I thought), but I don’t see the logic in recruiting solely on the basis of merit in law firms. On the other hand, merit is understandably considered for admission to higher education courses. Secondly, in order to pursue litigation, lawyers have to struggle, struggle, and struggle, till they finally find themselves one day. The first struggle is enrolment in the State Bar Council, which can take so much time that it can actually amount to mental harassment, unless one gets it done in Maharashtra (where ‘means’ exist to get the enrolment card in 3 days, or so I have heard!). Sounds like a bribe to me, paying a four-figure amount for a simple enrolment card. So either one has some jugaad or has unused, waste cash lying around. Yeah, that’s our ‘culture’ that we choose to veil through Yoga mats. Why doesn’t my law degree make me eligible to appear for the All India Bar Exam directly, I wonder, when I spent five years at LAW school, and not an engineering or fashion designing institute or medical institute. They have serious trust issues, it seems. Thirdly, putting a resume on a job site is the road to mild depression. Two things happen: either one’s not eligible because of lack of experience; or if, they’re a fresher, they’re offered a measly amount. So measly that it could very well qualify as a stipend. Fourthly, assuming they accept that job, they soon realise that it is not a ‘job’, because the tasks involve stapling sheets together, putting files together, and doing anything and everything that doesn’t even require an educational qualification. It’s like they teach you ABCD (any body can do). So finally, when the ’employees’ are fed up, they learn to repeat three ‘R’ words: ridiculous, restlessness, and resign. The employer suppresses his/her indignance behind words which convey his/her need for the employee, and both remain dissatisfied at the end of it all. Fifthly, applying in ‘dream companies’ shatters dreams, more often than not, because they do not trust law students’ ability enough to give them a chance. It’s appalling to note one thing: ‘experience’ becomes the sole factor on which everyone bases their recruitments. There’s more in a CV which can prove just how intellectual or diligent a person is. A skilled recruiter would be intelligent enough to understand and find someone like him or her, but then, where are those skilled recruiters? Sixthly, lawyers in research fields have their own problems. Anybody who wishes to teach needs to have minimum 5 or 10 publications. Sigh. Really? Oxford University, one of the most prestigious universities of the planet, does not rely on the number of publications, because they take into consideration a number of other, more important factors.
We really are inconsiderate, aren’t we? Trying to be ‘perfect’ all the time, when we need to be a little accommodating. We really cannot compare ourselves with the developed world, because our basic faculties of the mind, our cognitive abilities, our emotional intelligence and our personal ethics are all so underdeveloped. As a citizen, and as a student, I feel let down, and I write this on the behalf of millions of other students from all disciplines who are struggling to get a job, let alone realising their aspirations. Our parents’ hard-earned money pays for our education, which does not guarantee employment. When an educated person remains unemployed, one can imagine (or not imagine) the plight of those who are not educated. It’s time to reinvent how we think, and how we introspect, because dissatisfaction needs a trigger to set an explosion off. My trigger was Oxford University’s policy, in comparison to our Indian universities, and I am certain that many students like me hold similar views; and I believe that when things will get to boiling point, another brain drain may happen, and consequently, a drain of significant intellectual wealth. History always repeats itself, fortunately or unfortunately.

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One thought on “When will we unblock unemployment?

  1. Reblogged this on Careless Whisper and commented:

    Even Economic Survey of India (ESI) vouches for the growing unemployment in the country. “One tentative conclusion is that there has probably been a decline in long run employment growth in the 2000s relative to the 1990s and probably also a decline in the employment elasticity of growth: that is, a given amount of growth leads to fewer jobs created than in the past. Given the fact that labour force growth (roughly 2.2-2.3 percent) exceeds employment growth (roughly about 1 1/2 percent), the challenge of creating opportunities will remain significant.” Hmm.

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