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Consensus on release of withheld jobs report; sub-group to look into methodological issues

The timing of the release of the withheld PLFS report is, however, not clear as of now with the Model Code of Conduct in place after the announcement of elections, another source said.

Written by Aanchal Magazine | New Delhi |
Updated: March 12, 2019 4:54:00 am
Labour Force Survey, Periodic Labour Force Survey, jobs in india, unemployment, job loss, business news Govt had withheld release of Periodic Labour Force Survey for 2017-18

A broad consensus on release of the withheld Periodic Labour Force Survey for 2017-18 emerged at the meeting of the Standing Committee on Labour Force Statistics (SCLFS) held in Kolkata on Monday, even as the committee decided to form a sub-group to look into the methodological details of the survey.

It is learnt that the SCLFS has asked the sub-committee to finalise a report within three months to review the structure of the survey and suggest course correction, if applicable, for future rounds of the survey, two persons aware about the development said. The government had withheld release of Periodic Labour Force Survey for 2017-18 terming it as a draft report.

“The sub-committee will not look into the PLFS report for 2017-18. It will review how the survey is done and suggest a course correction if it’s required. As a statistical exercise, it is important to review any survey, suggest a course correction. But changes, if any, will apply only for future rounds of the surveys,” one of the persons cited above said.

The sub-committee is also learnt to have been asked to look into the issue of usage of population estimates by the NSSO in its surveys, which are lower than the population estimates projected in Census 2011 along with the methods of data collection and sampling design for labour statistics in various states. The timing of the release of the withheld PLFS report is, however, not clear as of now with the Model Code of Conduct in place after the announcement of elections, another source said.

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The Standing Committee on Labour Force Statistics, chaired by former University of Calcutta professor S P Mukherjee, had last met on December 4, wherein it had given its go ahead for the

PLFS report. The following day, on December 5, National Statistical Commission, the final approving authority for official statistics, had approved the Annual Employment-Unemployment Report (PLFS) for 2017-18.

In January, the acting chairman of NSC, P C Mohanan, a career statistician, and J V Meenakshi, Professor at the Delhi School of Economics, resigned from NSC protesting against the withholding of the NSSO’s first Annual Survey on Employment and Unemployment for the year 2017-18.

Chief Statistician of India Pravin Srivastava had on February 14 written in

The Indian Express that strictly, the PLFS survey design and the earlier Employment and Unemployment Survey, which were conducted along with the Household Consumption and Expenditure Survey, are “not comparable in view of the methodological differences itself” and therefore, the government had decided to refer the matter to the Standing Committee on Labour Force Statistics to examine and ascertain the impact of these changes holistically.

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