Karol Bagh | IAS GS Foundation Course | 29 May, 6 PM Call Us
This just in:

State PCS

Daily Updates


Periodic Labour Force Survey

  • 16 Mar 2022
  • 6 min read

For Prelims: Periodic Labour Force Survey (PLFS), National Statistical Office (NSO), Unemployment Rate, Labour Force,

For Mains: Employment, Growth & Development,Human Resource, Types of Unemployment in India, Recent Initiatives by Government to fight Unemployment

Why in News?

Recently, the latest Periodic Labour Force Survey (PLFS) released by the National Statistical Office (NSO) shows that the unemployment rate had shot up sharply during the nationwide lockdown in 2020 during the first wave of the pandemic.

What is the Unemployment rate?

  • Unemployment Rate: The unemployment rate is defined as the percentage of unemployed persons in the labour force.
  • Labour Force: The Labour force, according to Current Weekly Status (CWS), is the number of persons either employed or unemployed on an average in a week preceding the date of the survey.
  • CWS Approach: The urban unemployment PLFS is based on the CWS approach.
    • Under CWS, a person is considered unemployed if he/she did not work even for one hour on any day during the week but sought or was available for work at least for one hour on any day during the period.
    • Labour force participation rate in current weekly status in urban areas for people aged 15 years and above was 46.8% in the April-June quarter of 2021.


Disguised unemployment generally means (2013)

(a) large number of people remain unemployed

(b) alternative employment is not available

(c) marginal productivity of labour is zero

(d) productivity of workers is low

Ans: (c)

What is the Periodic Labour Force Survey?

  • Considering the importance of the availability of labour force data at more frequent time intervals, the NSO launched the Periodic Labour Force Survey (PLFS) in April 2017.
  • The objective of PLFS is primarily twofold:
    • To estimate the key employment and unemployment indicators (viz. Worker Population Ratio, Labour Force Participation Rate, Unemployment Rate) in the short time interval of three months for the urban areas only in the CWS.
    • To estimate employment and unemployment indicators in both usual Status and CWS in both rural and urban areas annually.

What are Recent Initiatives by the Government to fight Unemployment?

Types of Unemployment in India
  • Disguised Unemployment: It is a phenomenon wherein more people are employed than actually needed.
    • It is primarily traced in the agricultural and unorganised sectors of India.
  • Seasonal Unemployment: It is unemployment that occurs during certain seasons of the year.
    • Agricultural labourers in India rarely have worked throughout the year.
  • Structural Unemployment: It is a category of unemployment arising from the mismatch between the jobs available in the market and the skills of the available workers in the market.
    • Many people in India do not get jobs due to a lack of requisite skills and due to poor education levels, it becomes difficult to train them.
  • Cyclical Unemployment: It is a result of the business cycle, where unemployment rises during recessions and declines with economic growth.
    • Cyclical unemployment figures in India are negligible. It is a phenomenon that is mostly found in capitalist economies.
  • Technological Unemployment: It is the loss of jobs due to changes in technology.
    • In 2016, World Bank data predicted that the proportion of jobs threatened by automation in India is 69% year-on-year.
  • Frictional Unemployment: Frictional Unemployment also called Search Unemployment, refers to the time lag between the jobs when an individual is searching for a new job or is switching between the jobs.
    • In other words, an employee requires time for searching for a new job or shifting from the existing to a new job, this inevitable time delay causes frictional unemployment.
    • It is often considered voluntary unemployment because it is not caused due to the shortage of jobs, but in fact, the workers themselves quit their jobs in search of better opportunities.
  • Vulnerable Employment: This means, people, working informally, without proper job contracts and thus sans any legal protection.
    • These persons are deemed ‘unemployed’ since records of their work are never maintained.
    • It is one of the main types of unemployment in India.


Increase in absolute and per capita real GNP do not connote a higher level of economic development, if (2018)

(a) industrial output fails to keep pace with agricultural output.

(b) agricultural output fails to keep pace with industrial output.

(c) poverty and unemployment increase.

(d) imports grow faster than exports.

Ans: (c)

Source: IE

SMS Alerts
Share Page