Everywhere one sees there are idlers. Sitting on shopfronts, discussing politics, sports and to surprise of all and sundry economics. Once the clock strikes 12:30 in the afternoon they hit homes for lunch. And again aimlessly hit roads and once darkness descends enter homes for dinner.
The last two decades have been tough for Kashmiri young men and women. Joblessness peaked in the 90s of previous century and with increasing population the number of educated men and women who are idling away their days has increased many fold.
The unprecedented political situation which saw government impose a blanket internet ban has only added to the problem. Thousands of youth whose jobs depend entirely on the availability of internet are now jobless. The travel operators, the BPO start ups, inside sales, stock market agents, insurance agents, the logistics professionals are all out of jobs. Many companies have already withheld salaries of Kashmir-based employees for total closure of business cycle.
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All this is adding to the already bulging numbers of unemployed youth in valley. Many have already begun fleeing the valley for entry level jobs in various Indian corporate cities. There are Kashmir based professionals with years of experience who are ready to work at entry level in dead end profiles to help their families make two ends meet.
This massive unemployment is going to add to the problems faced by Kashmiris. The government must restore the high speed internet so that the youth in internet-based professions can restart their jobs and things can be back to normal.