Recently, a report was released named Migration in India 2020-21, by the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI).
- The all-India migration rate was 28.9 per cent in July-June 2020-21, with:
- 26.5 percent migration rate in rural areas and
- 34.9 per cent in urban areas.
- Females recorded a higher share of migration rate of 47.9 percent
- The migration rate for males was seen at 10.7 per cent
- Reason for migration: 49.6 percent of the males migrated in search of employment, to take up better employment/business/proximity to place of work, or loss of job/closure of unit/lack of employment opportunities.
- Migration is the movement of people away from their usual place of residence, across either internal (within country) or international (across countries) borders.
Reasons for internal migration and size of migrant labour force:
- Economic migration: Moving to find work or pursue a particular career, e.g., Indian workers in UAE constitute the largest part of the population of UAE (27%).
- Social migration: Moving to be closer to family or friends or for a better quality of life. E.g., Indian diaspora in USA going for higher education and better paying jobs
- Political migration: Moving to escape war or political persecution, e.g., the recent Rohingya migration to Bangladesh and India from Myanmar and the Syrian refugee crisis with 6 million leaving the country and 10 million internally displaced.
- Environmental causes of migration: It includes natural disasters such as an earthquake. Many are forced to move during annual floods and cyclones in India. Citizens of island countries Kiribati, Tuvalu and Nauru are moving out due to sea level rise.
- Push and pull factors driving migration: People migrate when the perceived interaction of push and pull factors overcome the friction of moving.
- Push factors are elements of the place of origin that are perceived negatively leading to a desire to leave. These include drought, famine, lack of jobs, over-population, civil war etc. Agrarian distress is a major push factor for economic migrants in India.
- Pull factors are elements of the destination that are perceived positively leading to place-attraction. These include a chance of a better job, education, standard of living or even better climate.
Issues with the data:
- The Census underestimates the migrant worker population.
- Female migration is recorded as movement due to family since that is the primary reason.
- However, many women take up employment after migrating which is not reflected in the number of women moving for work-related reasons.
- Census data also underestimates temporary migrant labour movement.
- The major factor for migration is pursuit of better opportunities in life, especially in areas with political stability. Hence, the creation of favourable conditions should be ensured in the source region.
- Increasing Developmental Opportunities: When job and education opportunities are fulfilled in the native place, migration rates start declining.
- Addressing Governance Deficit: Better law and order system should be enforced in source regions.
- Industry-friendly policies: To promote business and job opportunities in rural areas, e.g. MUDRA scheme, Make in India programme etc.
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