The Punjab Congress on Sunday strongly opposed the Akali-BJP government's proposal to increase the retirement age of its employees from 58 to 60 years, saying it will only add to the serious unemployment problem in the state.
Reacting to the proposal, Punjab Congress general secretary and Dhuri MLA Arvind Khanna said that it was shocking to learn that the state government instead of addressing the unemployment problem was further complicating it by virtually barring the entry of educated youth in government sector for another two years.
"Increasing the retirement age by two years means no vacancies for another two years," he pointed out and said that it would demoralise the educated youth particularly those who were about to cross the maximum age limit for government employment.
He said that there were already 45 lakh unemployed people in the state and this step would further add to their numbers and frustration.
The Congress leader asked the government to be kind and considerate towards the educated unemployed youth in the state. "On the one hand there is no investment in private sector and hence no jobs and the only job avenue is the government sector which also this government is going to shut for two years," he added.
Khanna also questioned the claims of the government that it would save the exchequer Rs 1,000 crores annually. The Congress leader cautioned the Badal government against blocking employment avenues for the educated unemployed youths for two years.