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India may face 50% labour shortage in the coming months

India may face 50% labour shortage in coming days in various sectors. The country has started lifting the lockdown to resume the economy but the country is facing labour shortage as thousands of migrant workers have left the cities for their hometown.

Labour shortage in various sectors

Among various sectors, construction and real estate sector face a 52% worker shortage, followed by manufacturing (44%) and pharmaceuticals (42%).

labour shortage

South India is struggling heavily. The migrant workers were moving to their native places amidst this Covid-19 pandemic. Many of them even walked hundreds of miles to get home before special trains were arranged to take these workers back home. Migrant workers are referred to as the backbone of Indian economy.

The total shortage of workers across sectors is likely to be 40-50 percent in the coming months and many companies have already started exploring incentives to bring them back as the lockdown eases.

Companies are also recruiting staff from the nearby local villages and localities, offering higher wages and bonuses, transportation and food. 15-day mandatory quarantine need for out-of-state workers, isolation facilities are also being arranged.

The demand-supply gap is high. A temporary wage hike for blue-collar workers in the form of extra hourly or daily wage, bonus may be given to retain the migrants.

Dabur India is hiring locals from neighboring villages and towns for its manufacturing units in Himachal Pradesh and Uttarkhand. The company had arranged transportation facility for migrants from Jharkhand and ensured that health and safety protocols were followed. Dabur also has permission to bring in workers from other states such as Jharkhand in case of a staff shortage.

Sectors that are hiring include pharmaceuticals, healthcare, e-commerce, manufacturing, FMCG, logistics and engineering. There are also openings for dispatchers, lab technicians, packers, delivery staff, drivers, store executives, sweepers, masons , tile fixers, electricians, maintenance engineers and security guards.

Some are optimistic that the migrant drought will not last long and many are already moving back.

Santrupt Misra, CEO, Aditya Birla Group, said India has a lot of young aspirational workforce who will want to come and work in urban centres if payment is done smoothly and income flow regularizes, more people will return.

Niranjan Hirandani, managing director of the Hiranandani Group, said it was “important” for companies to reduce migrant’s fears about the pandemic and job loss.

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