Prime minister Narendra Modi’s directive to Central government departments and ministries to recruit 1 million people in the next one-and-a-half years “in mission mode” may suffice to fill up only the existing vacant regular posts. A substantial number of new vacancies being identified can’t be filled with the proposed recruitment.
The PM made the statement recently after reviewing the “status of human resources in all departments and ministries”.
The number of regular Central government employees is around 4.8 million at present, while there are an additional 6.9 million pensioners.
In various departments and ministries of the Central government, there were an estimated 0.87 million vacant regular posts, as on March 2020, showed a labour ministry reply on March 14 this year in Lok Sabha.
The situation is unlikely to have improved much since then, as is evident from the National Pension System (NPS) subscribers’ data. From 2.1 million at the end of FY20, the number of subscribers under the NPS from the Central government sector increased to 2.28 million at the end of FY22, resulting an addition of just 0.18 million.
“Filling up of vacancies is a continuous process. Government issues instructions to all the ministries/departments from time to time for timely and advance action to fill up the unfilled posts,” the labour ministry had said in Parliament.
However, the fact remains, central sphere establishments such as railways, mines, ports and oil fields are increasingly getting contract workers to do their jobs.
The labour ministry, which maintains the consolidated records/data of contractual labourers/workers/employees, based on the licences and registration certificate issued under the Contract Labour (Regulation and Abolition) Act, 1970 in the central sphere, informed that central sphere establishments have more than doubled their contract workers’ count to 2.43 million in four years till 2021.
As per the labour ministry, the number of such employees in the central sphere was just 1.17 million in 2018 and had been on the rise each year, barring in 2020.
There is no consolidate data in the number of casual workers and daily wage earners working in central sphere establishments. Respective establishments employing them, based on the requirement, keep the data with themselves.
The number of regular Central government employees is around 4.8 million at present while there are pensioners 6.9 million.