India in the ’80s and ’90s had a craze for private jobs. It was something to be very proud of. People looking out for jobs were interested in joining the MNC’s. But, things have changed since then. Indian youths once they finish their graduation and post-graduation, they apply for government exams. It’s every household myth that if they land a government job, they get a good marriage proposal and their life is settled. Indias GDP has fallen down in recent years, and the private sector employees are losing their jobs resulting in slow economic growth. These incidents make people believe that what they are doing is right. Nobody can fire you if you have a government job.
Getting a government job is not as easy as it sounds. There are many hurdles throughout the process. Competition among Lakhs of people, government policies regarding reservations, too many people applying for the exam has a very low acceptance rate and the controversies that come along with it. For example, the SSC exam paper leak that happened last year. An MBA graduate applies for a job that qualifies a 10th or PU pass candidate. The working officials from corporate companies quit their well-earning jobs at their 30s and apply for government jobs. A survey from the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies shows that the love for government jobs has not declined and not showing any signs of declining in the coming years. In contrast, the youths who prefer private-sector jobs have come down to 7%.
There are both advantages and drawbacks when talking about government jobs. But if there is one superior impression in this belief of having the government job, then it is the Indian parents influencing the community and their neighbourhood about how crucial it is to get their daughter married to a government employee. Yes, their first preference is this, and everything comes later. Let’s look at why is this notion ingrained in their minds.
The reasons that why still government-employed groom is more preferred in India are:
1. Unrestricted Medical Facilities
CGHS, which is the short form of the Central Government Health Scheme established in the year 1954 by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to give free medical service to the central government paid employees. This scheme covers almost all the major cities of India, giving the benefit to pensioners and their families residing in these cities. And, in case of medical emergencies, the medical fees reimbursement up to 2 Lakhs for the employees is also available. When the health and medical expenses are seen as a threat by the middle-class families, free medical aid is a dream of every Indian.
2. Guaranteed Salaries
When prominent business tycoons like Vijay Mallya fail us, people are left with no option other than thinking that private jobs are disastrous. Thousands of employees were on the road asking for the salary that they earned by their hard work. But, neither the government, not the Kingfisher airlines helped them. When you have a government job, these events will never take place because as soon as the government budget is passed in the Lok Sabha, the funds are granted to the government jobs. After the implementation of the recommendations of the Seventh Pay Commission in 2016, the salaries of government personnel have almost doubled. A government job is considered safer and more prestigious than a private-sector job, so girls and their parents prefer a groom with a government job. Also, read 5 Best Ways To Be Confident Always In All The Circumstances.
3. Less work, more freedom
You have no “my boss hates me” issues here. You don’t need to work before the sun rises and after the sunsets. The government job gives you the privilege of toiling around your work time. The breaks are so long, and you will know when you visit any government offices. It’s frustrating. Maybe if the government employees were as diligent in their work as private employees, the Indian 2020 vision would come true sometime in future.
The government holidays marked on the calendar is made for government employees. Indian families plan their vacations according to that. In private companies, all the government holidays are not granted. And if you do take those holidays, either your salary is cut, or you have to compensate for your leave. The maternity benefit in the government sector is far better compared to private. This is one more reason why people prefer government jobs.
5. Government Quarters
The Airforce, Railways, defence and Navy families have spent the majority of their time in the government provided homes or apartments. They move from cities to cities whenever their breadwinner is transferred. Having a job in metropolitan cities with an average salary and renting a place for yourself is the toughest part of private jobs. One-fourth of your salary goes to rent and leaves very less for the monthly expenses and savings. But when the government provides a whole house, and you have a government job, nothing can get better than this. This furthermore motivates Indian parents on their determination towards the idea of the ideal groom.
The government employees are granted TA (Travelling allowance) and DA (Dearness allowance) every year. Under TA the travelling expenses by train are covered by railway ministry, and there is a compromise the price of the air-ticket for the serving employees. Dearness allowance covers the basic entities. There is a provision of groceries and other commodities for people serving the Country. The defence canteen gives bundles of beverages, food and other eatables for these employees. And for others, the amount is less compared to what people in the private sector pay.
The age-old educated retired couples are often seen sitting on the balconies of their apartments and discussing social issues. They have this freedom. They are happy, content and proud of themselves as they don’t need to depend on their children even after their retirement. They are earning their portion of the money to the household in the form of pension. The government gives them this. Even after the husband dies, his wife gets half of the pension and vice versa. The life long security provided by the government makes people believe in the importance of government jobs. Also, read While Counting The Years Of Life, Do Not Forget To Live!
Under the CEA (children education allowance) scheme, the government pays for the educational expenses of the children of the government employees. Currently, it is limited to only school kids. They are paid Rs. 2,250 per month for tuitions and Rs. 6,750 per month for the hostel expenses. The price is hiked depending on the Dearness Allowance. A big burden of Indian parents is getting their daughters married to an educated and well-settled family. The government job gives them all. Its 21st Century: Are You Still Afraid To Talk About Mental Health?
9. Social acknowledgement
Amitabh Khare of the Railway Recruitment Board says, “Indian society has been feudalistic. Where a government worker is seen with great respect in society. That mentality still prevails today”. Youths are far away from socializing these days. The societal pressures, taunts and Indian myth of no life beyond government jobs can give rise to the youths hating the society and their family. You are acknowledged more when you are an IAS, IFS or a public prosecutor compared to you being an HR manager or a VP of Marketing.
10. Healthy life
People have a notion that government jobs have no targets, no constant whining from your boss and good pay which eventually makes your mental health better compared to those in private jobs who have to keep hustling day and night. This clearly can also be the reason why parents look for grooms who are in government jobs.
The government jobs are good, but that doesn’t mean private jobs are bad. At the entry-level government jobs may pay a decent salary, but as years pass by the wage and the benefits earned by the private employee is far better compared to the government employee. The process of promotions and appraisals are comparatively slower in the government sector. The hard-working and passionate number one employee is given his due in a private company, but promotions and transfers can be politically manipulated in the government sector. The government jobs are often referred to as “confirmed” jobs, and this is also the reason for the high influx of relationships. The government job ensures you an appropriate salary, fixed hours of work, adequate leave, insurance facility, timely promotion, and job security. While in private employment, you have to face problems from time to time and have to bear the burden of work.
Government jobs are no longer comfortable as they were before. The non-performing officers are now dealt with strict rules if they don’t abide by integrity. The government has made plans for outsourcing some of the jobs in the private sector. The government is promoting privatization in the public sector under the scheme Public-Private Partnership (PPP). So, if you think that getting your daughter married to a groom who works for a government, make sure he is not corrupt because the Indian law is not as tolerant as it appears to be.
Credit & Authors: Sahitya Umesh and Aniket Chaudhary