Productive employment and sustainable livelihood: The Indian Situation. The total labour force in India in 1990 was 313.4 million. It has been growing at about 2 % per annum and, by 1995, the total labour force was estimated at 344.3 million. The backlog of unemployment was 23 million in 1991–92 (Eighth plan Estimate, 1992). Centre for Youth and Social Development, 'Jagadananda'