The massive crowd of jobseekers, which thronged the Goa Medical College and Hospital (GMC) premises for vacancies announced for the post of Multi-tasking Staff in the premier health institute in the state on Monday was a true indicator of the grim unemployment scenario that stares Goans in the face during these trying times. As the pandemic continues to unleash tremors after tremors of economic quakes globally, the scarcity of jobs is a truth that the locals have to come to terms with. The multitude which crowded the venue to attend the interview without a care for the social distancing norms and other safeguards prescribed for the coronavirus-induced health emergency only served to exemplify the desperation of the locals hard-pressed to make both ends meet due to the severity of the pandemic. The job profile of the multi-tasking staff at GMC lays emphasis on a very rigid working schedule and is fraught with personal risks considering their proximity to the infected patients. Moreover, the contractual nature of the job too is not a very attractive proposition. Yet, it is the hopelessness arising out of the pandemic that has encouraged people to opt for employment avenues which would otherwise have not invited much interest from job aspirants earlier. Besides those unemployed in the state, the large numbers who have lost their jobs abroad and returned home have only worsened the situation. It would be outrageous to believe that the state could cater to the unemployment needs of all those jobless. At such a time when survival has become the biggest worry for the common man, sensible are those who grab the opportunities available irrespective of the definition of the work. With financial experts the world over expressing doubts over the economic conditions due to the COVID-19 pandemic improving any time soon, unemployment percentages will continue to soar high. This is when innovative plans could help the common man to make a living for himself and his family. Many have already started small business ventures to help sustain them during the pandemic. But there are an equal number who continue to dwell in a fool’s paradise refusing to accept the enormity of the situation.
PACHU MENON, Margao