Unemployment can turn population dividend into population liability: President Mukherjee

| Updated: Aug 23, 2017 11:20 IST

New Delhi, July 16 (ANI): Stating that India is a 'young nation' with 62 percent of its population in the working age group, President Pranab Mukherjee has said that young minds are the assets of our country. Speaking at the inauguration ceremony of India Skills Competition -'India Skills-2016' yesterday in New Delhi on the occasion of the World Youth Skills Day, President Mukherjee said, "India is a young nation with 62 percent of its population in the working age group and more than 54 percent of the total population below 25 years of age. As a consequence, around 15 million youth enter the workforce each year. Young minds are our assets. This is our demographic dividend which we need to harness. As policy makers, we have a duty to empower our youth by providing skills to them. We need to seize this opportunity." He, however, cautioned that if we cannot provide jobs to the huge number of people entering the job market every year, the population dividend could turn into a population liability. "This explosive situation has to be prevented," he stressed. He also launched an International Skill Centre, a PMKVY 2.0, a Labour Market Information System and Skills Online. Addressing the gathering, the President also congratulated the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) for their achievements in a short span of time. He said the Ministry was extremely important for the socio-economic development of our country. He mentioned that recently skill development of 1500 employees of the Rashtrapati Bhavan was undertaken by the MSDE. He stated that unemployment is a serious challenge for India. In India, in the age group of 18-29 years, the unemployment rate is 12.9 percent. Therefore, he believed in the importance of infusing skills in our youth as this would improve the employment situation which would in turn generate wealth and translate our vision of economic development into reality. (ANI)