Past two decades have seen an exponential increase in the number of engineers in India. We proudly showcase the hike in technical education in India to the world.
But every coin has two sides so does this stats too.
Do you know that India is the country with the most Unemployed Engineers in the world? Isn’t it shocking !!
Every year a huge number of engineering students complete their college. Everyone has a different specialisation- Civil, Mechanical, Electrical Computer Science, IT etc.
These students have a dream – “to have financial security from a job through the degree they acquired and live a peaceful life”. But do they get that?
Let’s dive deep into this issue and try to know “the real Story of India – Country with the most Unemployed Engineers” and how much worse the current situation is.
Table of Contents
The consequences of Unemployment in Engineers
1.) Question of Survival
The rate of Unemployment is increasing at an exponential rate in India. There is hardly any announcement of new vacancies. Even the vacancies which were announced earlier take years and years just for the completion of the whole recruitment process.
This never-ending loop results in frustration and a big question on survival for Engineers.
They have the burden to support their families. Due to joblessness, there is no source of income and the continuous payment to coaching institutions, Fooding & Lodging suck out life from them day by day.
2.) Switching to different fields
To fight for their existence and win bread for survival, Engineers are forced to leave their precious dreams and switch to some other random fields like SSC, Administrative services, Banking jobs etc.
The whole concept of burning their life, sweating in hard work for becoming an Engineer seems null and void. With no opportunity in their field, they have no other option than to pursue some other career option which they never even thought of.
Engineers have to mug up a whole new syllabus now, follow a whole new curriculum to secure their life. And the horrifying part is that there is a complete drought-like situation in the vacancies in those fields too from past few years.
3.) Underpaid Engineers
Due to such scarcity of jobs in India, Engineers are forced to accept jobs with meagre payment. Even the Government is exploiting the Engineers in the name of contract joining in several services.
For example- An Assistant Engineer is paid approximately ₹ 19200 in MGNREGA.
Even a Head Mason earns – 700 * 30 = 21000/ month which is greater than the Assistant Engineer.
This is the situation in Government-funded schemes then you can think what may be the situation in Private firms. A civil Engineer when switching to a private job most probably will land to work under some contractor.
And it is even more shocking to know that they are paid around ₹ 12000- ₹ 14000. Is that a joke or what?
4.) Dealing with personal Issues
Engineers for some stability in life decide to prepare for government jobs. Least he knows what he will have to face in the coming years.
They need to wait years and years just to appear in any government examination, getting one is a far fetched race.
This affects their personal life to a severe extent. They are unable even to sustain and serve their family needs. For smaller cities in Bihar, UP, Rajasthan, etc., candidates face massive backlash emotionally as a big question hurdles them in their marriage.
FInancially stand nowhere, so no parent will accept to marry their girl to them.
5.) Tremendous Societal pressure
Once a student comes out of the Engineering College, society expects him/her to have a job else their whole life is a waste.
There is tremendous pressure on an Unemployed Engineer from society for the Job. People decide one’s worth only when he/she is financially stable.
Already there has been a massive degradation in the value of Engineering Degrees in society. The word Engineer has become synonym to – Unemployed.
People have started to quote that – “If you throw a stone from your terrace in any direction, there is a 90 % chance that it would hit an Engineer”.
Well, it is easy to say not to pay heed to what society says, and to which I too agree. But for how long- one year, two years or eternity?
6.) No other option ahead
Engineering students struggle each day to stand themselves up against all the odds. Never Ending preparation for government exams, continuous taunts from society, family, peers etc. There seems no other option ahead.
At first, the numbers in vacancies started to decline every year, and now it has become almost obsolete. The recent example being the cut down in railway vacancies in Engineering Services Examinations.
They have to live with this pathetic life situation where every day is a battle to survive for the next day.
7.) Never-ending financial crisis
To prepare for the competitive exams, Engineering students move to bigger cities with high aspirations and dream for jobs in their eyes.
They pay for the coaching institutions, Rent of hostels/PG’s, Fooding, daily commuting, other miscellaneous expenses. This expenditure is monthly and goes on in an infinite loop.
With no income in hand, they completely rely on their family for financial support. At some point when their parents become unable to pay anymore and come in the state where they need some stability, the student seems helpless.
This loop is a never-ending financial crisis which goes around each and every month.
8.) Responsibility to feed their family
Candidates, especially the males ( these days females too ), are in a big trauma while dealing with the question of how they will be able to fulfil their responsibility to feed their family.
Children from their childhood are born and brought up in a manner where they rely mostly on jobs.
People of less income group (like farmers, masons etc.), Middle-class families somehow manage to teach their children with just an inspiration that their child will one day acquire a good job and at least lead a normal basic life.
They cut their daily needs in order to fulfil their child’s dream. The only hope is that someday their child will compensate for all their sacrifices and support them in their old age.
But since they don’t get enough opportunities to grab even a single job, they are left to wander empty-handed with sleepless nights with the biggest question – “Survival for their Family “.
9.) Forced Do or Die situation for candidates
With so many frustrations and no way around students are in a DO or DIE situation literally. They are ready to go to any step just to earn their livelihood. They even are ready to work in underpaid jobs.
But when everything goes out of their hand- their age exceeds the eligibility criteria, their family is incapable of surviving, they feel helpless and see no path ahead.
This dead-end sometimes is so frustrating that candidates take some serious steps which people shiver just by thinking. A report from Times of India says that approximately 10 people kill themselves due to joblessness, poverty in India.
How shocking is this !!
If you are someone who is in the same conditions, please never opt for such steps. There is always a way around. At least think of your family.
10.) Inclination towards crime and drugs
Now with no job and no opportunities, students are inclined towards crime. They see an easy escape to their joblessness and empty hands.
Their life starts drowning in the bog of drugs, crime, theft etc. The number of crimes done by engineers in recent years is increasing every year.
I agree some opt for it voluntarily for easy money, but many are forced to this path just for survival. This should never be encouraged, but this is what it is.
Reasons for Unemployment in Engineers
There are several reasons why there is a hike in the numbers of unemployed Engineers. Let’s analyse it one by one-
1.) Irregular Announcement of Vacancy
This is something which I have consistently spoken about in my previous posts.
First, an Engineer waits for an announcement of the vacancy, which is rare. Vacancies are already delayed, and if we talk about engineering vacancies, the situation is even worse.
If somehow the vacancies are announced, the whole recruitment process goes on for years and years. You can go through this previous article to know that how long a recruitment process goes on for an Engineering Recruitment Examination in India and it’s states.
There are so many batches competing for the same post in the same exam. The number of seats is already dipping to a new low. So, in lakhs of candidates, only a few hundred manage to get a job.
After that again, there is a long wait for the next examination.
2.) Very less number of vacancy and job generation
As stated above, the number of vacancies is declining exponentially. Instead of generating new posts and jobs, the Government is removing the existing ones.
This is very horrifying for someone who is preparing for years to grab one seat, and if there is regular trimming in the number seats their chance to succeed lessens.
This also increases Cut Off Marks insanely. These days cut-offs for general category goes upto 80 % or even more. Does it seem rational at all? It means that either you know everything, each and every question asked to you, or else you are not worthy.
This is not only the case in government jobs. States like Jharkhand and Bihar still don’t have corporate companies, bigger industries where the Engineers could find a job opportunity. But these things have nothing to do with elections anymore, so they are of no importance.
3.) Delayed results
This point is also somewhere related to the above two. Already the vacancy is notified after so many years of wait that too with less number of seats for Engineering students. Over that the candidates have to wait for years and years just for the results.
Is it justified to any extent?
They have a pretty excuse- Examination paper is leaked, results are on hold due to court case and whatnot.
If that’s the case then how come CDS, UPSC, Matriculation Board Examinations etc. take place in the said time and release the result as per the schedule.
The only work assigned to the recruitment department/agencies is to conduct the exams and release the results. They are unable to do that too.
I always wonder Why even they exist?
Why should they not be terminated?
I want to ask the politicians-
What if the elections were uncertain? What if the elections were notified after 8-10 years than the tentative 5 years?
What if then Elections were conducted after 2 -3 years henceforth?
Then what if the results were delayed quoting the malpractice in the election process?
And what if the results were announced after 2 – 3 years of delay?
And lastly what if they had to wait for further 2 – 3 years just for the swearing ceremony and forming a government?
4.) Quality of Engineering colleges
The past few years the number of Engineering colleges increased in huge numbers. States like Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh etc. have given affiliation to hundreds of Engineering Colleges.
This move was great to make more students able to gain technical knowledge and live up their dreams. But slowly it all seems like a scam.
Colleges with mediocre infrastructure and an inadequate number of teachers were granted affiliation by the AICTE.
If we leave Computer Science and IT streams which can survive with just the availability of computers and internet connection, other core branches like Civil Engineering, Mechanical Engineering etc. require so much more than that.
There are several apparatus like-
Vertical milling machines. Manual lathe Machine. Surface grinding, Welding facilities,
Digital, Automatic and Manual Compression testing machine, Direct Shear apparatus,
A triaxial testing machine, Consolidation test apparatus,
California Bearing Ratio Apparatus, Unconfined compression test apparatus, Two gang prism mould, Blaine fineness apparatus, Standard Vicat apparatus, Vibrating machine etc.
These apparatus are just a few, and there is much more equipment needed.
With such a lack of infrastructure, the number of teachers, essential equipment etc. how come these colleges are granted with an affiliation. Will these colleges ever produce quality students?
5.) Quality and skilled of Engineers
When students pass from such a garbage institution, they lack the skill and are incompetent to match the required knowledge.
They are bound to roam on streets for jobs, and ultimately they end up being unemployed. They now have no other option left than to prepare for some other job or work under private firms where they are exploited, forced to work for extra hours and are underpaid.
6.) More focus to self-employment than recruitment
Now, this is something which must be taken into account. In recent years the focus of the Government has shifted from job creation to other stuff.
Whenever they are questioned on Unemployment, they have a vague answer to focus on self-employment and give others jobs instead of searching for jobs.
How come the child of a farmer, a mason, daily wager, or even a middle-class family afford to start a business or build a firm. They don’t have enough resources.
Whole life they studied for the sake of acquiring a job when they graduate. But they are told to forget everything and do something on their own. Is it justified at all?
They don’t have the capital and courage to risk their and their families life taking such an unexpected and uncertain path. However, the Government does say to support them by lending them some loans.
But where is financial security? The person taking loan has the liability to pay back the loan amount even if the business doesn’t run as per the expectations, over that the bank charges a whopping 9 to 12 % of interest on the loan amount.
And again the real question arises that if an Engineer has to start a business ( a tea stall, Pakoda centre, restaurant, shop etc.), then what was the need to devote their whole life in studying something different.
Where does his knowledge and Degree of Engineering even use?
His family sacrificed their whole life, spent money like water to make their child capable of having a job. But what they get in return is just one line sentence- “Be self-sufficient, focus on self-employment and not on government jobs recruitment”.
7.) Branches with least opportunity in Private sector
There are few branches like IT, Computer Science, Electronic and communications etc. who get the campus placements. Several IT Companies visit the colleges to recruit the candidates from the final year ( that too if the college is good enough ).
But there are some branches like Civil Engineering who have almost negligible exposure to campus placements. There are a very few good companies of infrastructure in India who even consider campus recruitment whose number can be counted on fingers.
Also, they only visit IIT’s, NIT’s etc. Students of the rest of the colleges never get a chance to even sit in campus placement.
Students from branches like Civil Engineering don’t get jobs as a fresher due to lack of opportunities, and in the later phase, they require experience for jobs in bigger companies which they don’t have at the first place
This again forms a never-ending loop of joblessness.
So, such students have no other option left than to prepare for government exams and crack one seat for them. Their number is huge, and vacancies are so less. This results in adding up to the already sky roaring number of Unemployed Engineers.
8.) Unemployment, not a prime agenda for elections anymore
The prime reason for the increase in the Unemployment rate in India is that it is no longer considered as an agenda and important issue for elections anymore.
It is now just in their talks but not in the bucket list. No single political party focuses on it as they fear it might trigger when they come into power.
They fear that they would have to pay to such a huge crowd. Lakhs of seats are already vacant, and if they recruit on such a massive scale, they will be burdened by their salary. So, why take up something which might bother them in the coming days.
They are not the only ones to blame by the way. We are more responsible for such impairment. We have forgotten to voice our basic issues, especially employment.
We sideline the fact that starvation has no religion or caste and we forget that “UNEMPLOYED” is our only identity.
9.) Erratic Shift to the digital platform for learning
India sees a huge boost in internet penetration. The Government too is forcing everything to shift to digital mode. The move is applaudable.
But the issue is that the whole process is very Erratic and seems enforceable in a short span. When smaller cities are not still equipped with robust broadband networks, how come we expect small towns and villages to have strong internet connectivity. Literacy is let alone the biggest hurdle.
So, children in metros are already ahead of the smaller cities, towns and villages. There is no plain field to compete for such students. And the real crowd of unemployed youth resides in such places.
Hence, this unlevelled competing ground results in a decrease in the required opportunities even more.
Go through this article to know the current situation of E-learning in India.
10.) Blind, Deaf and Dumb Media
Do I even need to elaborate on it?
Solution for the establishment of Engineers
We discussed the consequences and reasons for the increase in Unemployment of Engineers in India, but the next question arises what’s the solution.
So, let’s focus on some practical solutions –
1.) Regular Announcement of Vacancy and Timely results
The very first step to improve this massive Unemployment is to regularise the whole process of recruitment. It can be achieved only through scheduled notification of vacancies and conduct of examinations.
More than 5 lakhs vacant seats are already there in Railways, NTPC, SSC etc. on which recruitment is on hold. It is just at the central level. Just think how big the numbers would be if we combine all Central, State, PSU’s etc. together.
Out of which the number of vacancies in Engineering departments is way too high as there are so many vacancies and backlog seats on which no recruitment has been carried out for around a decade.
This clearly shows the lack of will among the governments and organisations to give jobs. Maybe that is because they fear the burden of paying.
But they all are very much willing to recruit people on a contract basis where the salary is six-fold lesser in other terms they want – “Bandhua Majdoor “.
Even if they consider filling all the vacant seats already available, this evil of Unemployment will be suppressed to some extent. Rest generating new job opportunities should always be the prime concern.
Suggesting to start your own business or firm is not a rational solution of any kind.
2.) Malpractice free Examination Process
Conducting a fair recruitment process is one of the biggest issues in India. Rarely there is an examination on which there is no allegation of Malpractices ( paper leak, Cheatings, bribery, corruption, etc.).
Due to this almost every exam is either cancelled in the primary stage or is taken in the courts. This results in delays in the process and the number of unemployed aspirants increases year after year.
This whole situation can be avoided only through a transparent recruitment process. If a matriculation Board Examination, CDS exams, UPSC exams etc. can be on time and even after court cases their results are published on schedule, then why not the same thing can be followed in other recruitment examinations.
3.) Reforms in court case handling which involves lakhs of youth
This is the high time when reform is much needed to prioritise the listings and hearing of these cases in the court. Other political issues, high profile cases are given much priority while listings and for hearing.
But when there is the question on the life of lakhs and lakhs of students, they have to wait for months after months and year after year to get hearing dates and final verdict.
The recent examples being the 6th JPSC exam which went for so long and the BPSC AE exam for which students had to wait for months and months just for the hearings.
I think the judiciary is capable enough to enact this positive change and they should consider this in the coming days.
4.) Declaration of Results on time
Well, it’s a fact that after such a long wait just for the announcement of vacancy, students have to wait even longer for the results and to join. This not only increases the crowd for the next examinations but also eliminates the chances of deserving students.
Why can’t the exam results be published on said schedule? Is it that difficult?
If it is, then how come UPSC and other such examinations are able to publish it according to the schedule, they release.
5.) Unemployment should be seen as the prime cause for Voting
This is something which we – the common people will have to understand. We will have to highlight to the administration. Politicians, media, judiciary etc. that Unemployment is the biggest issue in the country for which serious steps should be taken to eliminate it in stages.
If even a single person is unemployed in your family- you should ask your representative what he/she is doing to eradicate this evil. It should be followed irrespective of your beliefs, caste, party, gender etc.
Starvation has no religion, and poverty has faced.
6.) Proper attention to other Engineering branches too
Whenever there is a protest regarding vacancies and Unemployment, the Government serves a lollipop of data showing the massive number of ongoing examination processes ( which is by the way never-ending and always starts when there are some elections ).
These processes are basically for the posts of Police, Teacher, Amin etc. But where are the vacancies for the Engineers?
Already there are no vacancies in any field. If a vacancy is announced, then it is of some other field. Vacancies for Engineers take more than half a decade just to get notified, talking about the duration for the whole process will make no sense.
Engineers are forced to leave their field and jump to the other streams banking, SSC etc. to take a job. Since the era is of digital evolution students from branches related to computers and IT do get placed in some private companies but what about some core branches like CIVIL Engineering where students don’t have enough opportunity elsewhere.
They are constantly neglected.
So, the Government should focus properly and give equal attention to other Engineering Branches too. Merely showing the stats of some other fields will not feed those empty stomachs.
7.) Media Attention
Wanted to speak a lot but leave it. You all know it very well !!
8.) Strict evaluation of Colleges
While giving affiliation to colleges, AICTE should personally evaluate the institution strictly. I don’t know on what basis several garbage institutions are provided with the affiliation to run an Engineering college with inadequate faculties, no infrastructure, insufficient equipment etc.
Also, a transparent platform should be made where students should be given a portal to submit complaints anonymously with evidence against the college administration if they are incapable of providing quality education and facilities.
Though there are bodies to monitor these things if they were that efficient, the current situation of colleges would never have been there in the first place.
9.) Focus on the development of skills among the Engineering students
Engineering students, when coming off of such below par quality institutions, lack basic skills to grab a job in private firms.
So, it should be made compulsory by the Government that every private and Government firm must admit a said number of freshers and train them for a minimum one year and produce a skill certificate for them.
This will ensure that Engineering students have enough knowledge and skill to work for any organisation. This will also help them explore other countries for jobs as they would already be well versed with their respective fields.
10.) Formation of an NGO or Organisation for Vacancy and Jobs
A dedicated NGO or Organisation should be formed whose work should only be to look in the irregularities in vacancies and examinations.
That organisation should be run by students only ( mix of administration, engineering, teaching etc. aspirants ) and whose members should be from all the major cities of India. Also, they should have the power to report against the recruitment bodies, SSC, PSC’s ( Bothe central and State ) etc.
And on their report, the official’s service could be terminated if found true.
There must be a governing body over such recruitment agencies. As they are currently incapable of doing just the single work for which they are appointed, i.e. to conduct an examination and publish the result on the said schedule playing with the future of lakhs and lakhs of students.
- The Irregularities and Delay in State PSC Exams
- Current status of Teachers in India
- Why digital Learning in India is struggling
There are several reasons why India is considered the country with the most unemployed Engineers.
It is the high time when the Government ( both at centre and state ) should take some concrete steps to eradicate this current Catastrophic situation of Unemployment among the Engineers.
While reading the whole article, you must have felt relating to the issue, consequences and reasons closely, even when you may be from different fields.
An Engineer is someone who prepares his whole life for a technical degree and Job. But after the degree is over they are left with no placement- empty hands, starving stomachs, and shattered dreams.
Somehow he collects all the pieces of his shattered dreams, joins them and dreams again- A dream to get a government job.
He prepares for years and years paying the fees of coachings, soaring rent etc. emotionally and financially burdening his retired old parents.
Years pass, and he realises that there is no vacancy for him. Even the diploma seats have been snatched from his reach. He is frustrated. After enough frustration, mental trauma and humiliation from the society, he finally decides to prepare for regular vacancies.
He again shifts all his focus from technical aspirations to Banking and SSC jobs. He further gives a few years to prepare for such exams. To his surprise, these exams too are delayed, but there is a hope – One Day I will get this Job.
But what happens !!
These exams too are now delayed- Delay in the notification, delay in the conduct of Examinations and if everything goes right – Results are not published. If somehow the results are published, there is a delay in joining.
Time passes, and the level of frustration reaches a breakpoint. They are left with no option than to get any job. And in order to get one, that high esteemed Engineering college student now fills the form of a Lower divisional clerk and then that of an Office Boy.
I have to ask only one thing – What should an Unemployed Engineer do !! They even don’t have robust forums; they already are out of their place in the crowd of students in other streams.
It’s always easy for any politician, official etc. to wait and everything will be corrected after the next elections or session. But least they feel the pain and frustration among the students.
Ask a 30-year-old Engineering student who still is in wait for the vacancies or the results of the exams he appeared previously. Ask him how it feels to ask for money from his retired parents, how it feels while thinking of the marriage of his sister, his responsibility to feed his family.
Nights are often sleepless and haunting. They fear the next morning and passing days.
And what they want – Just a Job. They want to wash the mark of peripatetic from their forehead.
What is their mistake- Becoming an Engineer or dreaming of serving the nation through government offices, or just a meagre job for survival?
An engineer might seem silent, burning his pain inside but his eyes always look for that dream, the dream he saw while in his school and his Engineering college to have a normal life where he could spend his rest of the life peacefully supporting his family. He waited for that One day and still waits for only one thing – “A JOB “.