While the need to protect jobs in Goa for Goans in the government sector of course but also in private enterprises is completely justified, a policy or stand on this should also weigh in the fact that every Indian has the fundamental right to live anywhere in the country and by that yardstick work anywhere in the country.
By the same yardstick, each of our metros is peopled by those from all over the country from students, to skilled and unskilled workers to the very top of the Industrial and corporate leadership and workforce.
The state of Goa however feels, with merit that arguments that for positions which need unskilled labour, the local populace must have the right of first choice and refusal. Which is why, the government has issued a show cause notice to 22 companies for participating in a job fair in neighbouring Sawantwadi in Maharashtra
Interestingly the list of companies which has received these notices include prominent firms in Goa, like Cipla Limited, Blue Cross Laboratories, Manipal Health Enterprises P, Zuari Engineering Services, Bosch Ltd, Hindustan Coca Cola Beverages, Deltin group, DNA-GOA, Pai Kane Group, Alcon Victor Group, Shriram Transport Finance, Magsons Group Magsons, Pai kane and Alcon Victor group are run by prominent Goan families or in the case of Magsons a family which has totally merged into the Goan milieu.
While the show cause notice may have been a notice of intent, the reply to the notice by these companies will be significant and interesting and drive home a few home truths about the Goan landscape when it comes to recruiting talent for jobs in the private sector, which are merit and performance based, unlike government jobs.
As the ability to give jobs, or create skill sets needed to secure jobs, the tussle and the struggle between the government and the private sector to fill the need will increase. The government is increasingly playing the role of big brother and looking closely, if not actually intruding on the recruitment process of private sector jobs. The Government will invoke its right under the Directive Principles of State police enshrined in the constitution, Section 39 of which state
The State shall, in particular, direct its policy towards securing –
(a) that the citizen, men and women equally, have the right to an adequate means of livelihood;
(b) that the ownership and control of the material resources of the community are so distributed as best to subserve the common good;
(c) that the operation of the economic system does not result in the concentration of wealth and means of production to the common detriment;
But the private sector at times simple does not get the kind of workforce it wants from locals. In fact none other the Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar had observed that Goans are not interested in private sector jobs. He had also accepted that many Goans do have the skill sets for the jobs at hand.
The government may have started off by giving incentives to those companies employing 80% Goans but the Chief Minister did say that the companies cannot be made to shut down if they are not able to recruit 80 per cent of their workforce from among Goans. This pragmatism was not quite on display in his absence when show cause notices were sent to manor companies many of whose love for Goans and Goa can never be doubted.
However even if the rub of the green goes the way of Goans, certain fundamentals need to be called out. Employment in the private sector lasts as long as your performance lasts. Moreover there are performance appraisals done professionally and salaries that not half as high as in government.
The lure of the government job is the reason why there are nearly 1.2 lakh unemployed people on the register of the state employment exchange, which is equivalent to nearly eight per cent of the state population.
Therefore the state has to look within before sending unprecedented show cause notices to companies based in Goa. The causes of unemployment are complex, and much more so in Goa.