Ithat land Where labor is cheap, the man who drives the most luxurious car is not a billionaire. He is a parking attendant. For a meager salary, he has to park, double and triple park cars in tight spaces and then rescue them. In India, where car sales have jumped 16% since the start of the covid-19 pandemic — a trend driven in part by the growing popularity of large sport-utility vehicles — the tricky job has been made even more difficult.
For many, India’s auto boom is emblematic of the country’s hyper-growth economy. New data on February 28 showed that India’s gross domestic product Growth in the final quarter of 2022 was 4.4% year-on-year, down from 6.3% in the previous quarter. Despite the economic slowdown, International Monetary Fund India is expected to be the fastest growing major economy in 2023 and account for 15% of global growth. The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (People’s Daily) believe that the country is in Amritkaran auspicious time that will bring prosperity to all Indians.
not everyone is convinced People’s Dailyof booster. For skeptics, the rise in car sales is actually evidence of uneven economic growth in India. In fact, purchases of two-wheelers such as scooters and motorcycles have been declining since the start of the pandemic, dropping 15% since 2019. These are the means of transport for the masses: half of households own a two-wheeler; less than one in 10 owns a car.
Few issues are more important to Indian politics than the well-being of the common man in the country. The problem is that answering this question is fraught with difficulties. Official statistics are mixed. Ministers have not released poverty estimates for more than a decade. Therefore, other surveys and data sets (such as car sales) must be used for evaluation and extrapolation.
These suggest that poverty reduction has stalled, and may even be reversed. According to a survey of 44,000 households by the Center for Economic Monitoring of India (CMIE), a research institute said that only 6% of India’s poorest households (earning less than 100,000 rupees ($1,200) a year) believe their households are better off than they were a year ago. The recovery from the pandemic has been sluggish when draconian lockdowns hammered the economy.
The World Bank estimates that the shutdown has pushed 56 million Indians into extreme poverty. Since then, inflation has further eroded purchasing power: Real wages have stagnated in rural areas, where most of the poor live, and annual inflation jumped to 6.5% in January. Poor households, where food accounts for 60 percent of household expenditure, feel the greatest pressure. Rural food costs are up 28% since 2019; onion prices are up a staggering 51%.
Labor market data also overshadowed India’s impressive headline growth figures. Acceptance rates for rural employment programs that guarantee participants low-wage jobs remain higher than pre-pandemic levels. CMIE Surveys show unemployment is also high, averaging more than 7 percent over the past two years. Many have given up looking: Labor force participation has fallen since the pandemic.
India’s economy has many problems, from poor primary education to its inability to develop its limited manufacturing industry. But these persisted even when previous growth spurts lifted millions out of poverty. So it’s more likely that the recent pain reflects the aftermath of the pandemic. Construction companies in cities, for example, have complained of labor shortages because many workers who traveled to villages during the lockdown have yet to return.
These may eventually start to ease. Newly released data suggest that rural wages may be picking up. Deposits in bank accounts for the poor are also on the rise. Even sales of two-wheelers are slowly climbing.However, for the claimed Amritkar Not going well. ■
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