The unemployment rate in the past five years; cut in interest rates on small savings; illegal means adopted by banks to recover loans; attacks on doctors — these were among the prominent issues raised in the Lok Sabha on Monday.
During Question Hour, Union Minister for Labour and Employment Santosh Kumar Gangwar said that reports on the high unemployment rate were misleading, and said job creation was a priority for the government. He said the overwhelming mandate to the government indicated that people did not believe such “misleading reports”.
When Opposition MPs protested, Mr. Gangwar said he was ready to have a discussion in the House on the job situation. “Employment generation coupled with improving employability is the priority of the government,” he said.
Mr. Gangwar assured the Lok Sabha that the government would come out with a report on job creation, and said 18.26 crore loans had been sanctioned under the Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana up to March 31.
The Minister’s response came after Congress member from Kerala Adoor Prakash asked if the government had any master plan to generate more jobs in every sector of the economy.
Low interest rate
Apart from employment data, the issue of slashing interest rates on fixed deposits and other small savings instruments was raised by the Congress leader in the Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, who said nearly two percentage points have been slashed over the past two years. “This government talks about securing the trust of common people but after coming to power, it has started hammering them,” Mr. Chowdhury said during Zero Hour.
Mr. Chowdhury also reminded the Lok Sabha that July 1 was National Doctor’s Day and the occasion should be the starting point to build a relationship of trust between doctors and patients' kin. The comments came against the backdrop of attack on a junior doctors in Bengal.
Oil rigs in TN
Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) member T.R. Baalu criticised the Union government in the Lok Sabha over the issue of drilling oil rigs in Tamil Nadu’s delta region and called it “unlawful”. Mr. Baalu said they yielded hardly any crude but hurt farmers. Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan invited DMK members for a “transparent discussion” and assured nothing forcible would be done.