India's boom a bust for rural workers

Poor infrastructure and restrictive labour laws exacerbate rural-urban divide
||Last Updated: 04/12/2006

Rural workers have been left out in the cold during India's economic boom, a recent report stated.

The annual Economic Survey, prepared by the Finance Ministry, found that while India's economy has grown at about eight per cent annually over the past three years, the average rural wage worker earned nearly 40 per cent less than his urban counterpart in 2004.

Unemployment, especially in villages and rural areas, has risen sharply in the past decade. In rural areas, the rates increased for males to nine per cent from 5.6 per cent and for females to 9.3 per cent from 5.6 per cent.