On November 16, BJP supporter Rishi Bagree jotted down Uttar Pradesh’s purported ranking on various performance indicators such as unemployment rate, ease of doing business (EoDB) and gross state domestic product (GSDP). “Uttar Pradesh is progressing like never before,” Bagree claimed.

Multiple Twitter users shared the same claim.

A similar trend was seen on Facebook.

FACT-CHECK

Rishi Bagree cited specific sources for two indicators — Centre For Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) for the unemployment rate and World Bank for ease of doing business. As for GSDP, no sources were cited.

What is UP’s GSDP?

Earlier this year, a similar claim was made by CM Adityanath and The Times of India. Alt News found that UP’s GSDP has been second or third highest from FY 2004-05 to FY 2018-19, according to the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MSOPI). Thus, the claim that GSDP growth happened in the last five years under Adityanath’s tenure is false.

MSOPI data shows that Uttar Pradesh ranked third in FY 2019-2020 behind Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu.

Did World Bank rank UP second in India for ease of doing business?

Under CM Yogi Adiyanath, UP’s rank in ease of doing business has jumped up from 10 in 2015 to the second-highest in 2019, as per Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) data on RBI. However, the World Bank has not made any such claims about UP.

World Bank’s project Doing Business measures business regulations and their enforcement across 190 economies and selected cities at the subnational and regional level. The latest report is from 2020 and doesn’t mention Uttar Pradesh.

Did the unemployment rate in UP drop from 17.5% in 2017 to 4.2% 2021?

The viral claim states that the unemployment rate in UP dropped from 17.5% in 2017 to 4.2% and attributed CMIE, a Chennai-based think tank, for the data.

This is false.

CMIE’s methodology for calculating the unemployment rate is as follows — this rate is computed as the number of persons not employed but willing to work and actively looking for a job as a per cent of the total labour force, where the total labour force is the sum of all those who are employed and those who are not employed but are willing and looking for a job. For more details, visit the website. It’s worth noting that the unemployment rate is released in monthly and weekly intervals.

We studied CMIE’s unemployment rate monthly time series for UP from January 2016 and October 2021. While the unemployment rate in the month of October 2021 is indeed 4.2% as pointed by Bagree, in the year 2017 none of the months had an unemployment rate of 17.5%. The highest was 6.5% in the month of August. Thus, CMIE’s data has been exaggerated to show a greater reduction of unemployment under Adityanath.

Official data on UP’s GSDP, unemployment rate and FDI

It’s worth noting similar claims were made in a three-page advertorial lauding Chief Minister Yogi Adiyanath for Uttar Pradesh’s industrial transformation by The India Express published in the month of September.

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This advertorial had come under scrutiny after netizens pointed out that the images were not from UP. One of the images was of Kolkata’s Maa flyover and the other was a stock image.

Whilst the image from Kolkata became the talking point, Alt News spotted three more misleading claims made in the advertorial. The first claim was about UP becoming India’s second-richest in terms of gross state domestic product. This claim has been debunked earlier in the report.

The Indian Express advertorial also made another misleading claim that UP has the lowest unemployment rate.

As per the latest state-wise unemployment data (FY 2019-20) on the Reserve Bank of India’s website, UP doesn’t have the lowest unemployment rate.

This data is divided into two categories — rural and urban. The rural unemployment rate is the lowest in Delhi with 5/1000. While in UP the rural unemployment rate is 43/1000 which is better than the national rate of 50/1000. As for the urban unemployment rate, the lowest is in Dadar and Nagar Haveli (18/1000) followed by Gujarat (32/1000). In UP, the urban unemployment rate stands higher than the national average (77/100) at 106/1000.

 

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About the Author

Archit is a senior fact-checking journalist at Alt News. Previously, he has worked as a producer at WION and as a reporter at The Hindu. In addition to work experience in media, he has also worked as a fundraising and communication manager at S3IDF.