In the first such detailed survey carried out by a state among migrant workers returning following the coronavirus outbreak in March, Madhya Pradesh has found that nearly one-fourth of the returnees were engaged in the construction sector, and almost six out of 10 of them belong to Scheduled Tribes (ST) and Scheduled Classes (SC) communities.
Madhya Pradesh has so far mapped skill-set and basic details of nearly 7.30 lakh workers, who began returning from March 1, along with 5.79 lakh family members. The survey was carried out in 55,000 villages and 380 urban areas from May 27 to June 6, officials said.
At 2.22 lakh and 2.08 lakh workers, respectively, people from ST and SC communities, respectively, constitute 30.4 per cent and 28.5 per cent of the returnees, the state has found. People from Other Backward Classes (OBC) constitute the largest chunk of returning workers — at 2.80 lakh, or 38.4 per cent.
Only 19,720 workers (2.7 per cent) of the returnees are from the general caste category.
According to the 2011 Census, people from ST and SC communities formed 21.1 per cent and 15.6 per cent, respectively, of the state’s population. The survey has revealed that their share of migration in search of work is much more than their share in the state’s population.
The survey has pointed out that 50.6 per cent of the returnees worked in the unorganised sector, and only 19 per cent in factories and industries.
According to the survey, construction and building activities engaged 24.1 per cent of workers who have returned, followed by agricultural work (13.5 per cent). Those engaged in brick/tiles manufacturing account for 5.2 per cent, and blacksmiths and carpenters account for 3.8 per cent, followed by those working in shops or restaurants (3.7 per cent) and loaders (2.8 per cent), the survey found.
Masons, drivers and private security guards are among other categories of work that the returning people were engaged in.
Seventy-eight per cent of those who migrate are aged between 18 and 40 years, and men account for 82.8 per cent of these workers, the survey has found.
The extensive survey is expected to help the stage address issues of employability of not just these workers but address jobs and employment issues among different sections of the state’s population in future.
As many as 51 per cent workers who have returned worked in developed states such as Maharashtra (27 per cent) and Gujarat (24 per cent). Rajasthan and Delhi’s share were 11 per cent and 8 per cent, respectively, followed by Haryana and Uttar Pradesh – at 7 per cent and 6 per cent, respectively.
Balaghat, Chhatarpur, Morena, Rewa, Satna, Sidhi, Bhind, Panna, Seoni and Tikamgarh are the top 10 districts where most workers have returned. Indore, Bhopal and Narsinghpur districts accounted for the least number of returnees, the survey found.
Before collecting details and mapping their skills, the government had created a portal —RojgarSetu — to serve as a bridge between these returnees, who are looking for work locally, and industries, including those from other states, who are looking for skilled workers. The portal will provide workers opportunity for semi-permanent and permanent employment in industries and factories, shops and establishments, building and construction activities and commercial establishments, the government has said.
As many as 1,519 potential employers have registered themselves on the portal; these include big manufacturing units, MSMEs, builders, placement agencies, and labour contractors. The MP government plans to take the number to 5,000 employers.
Additional Chief Secretary (Labour) Rajesh Rajora said job fairs have been planned in the state over the next few weeks.
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