The NSSO report was based on data collected between July 2017 and June 2018 and is the first official survey post-demonetisation.
When the economy is growing at over 7 per cent, one needs to see where this growth is coming from, added Kumar.
Kant added that India is creating enough jobs for new entrants but may not be creating enough good quality jobs.
The damning revelation comes just a day after a controversy erupted over the central government's refusal to release the report on unemployment despite the National Statistical Commission giving its approval in December past year.
Latching on to the opportunity to attack the government, Congress chief Rahul Gandhi said that contrary to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's promise of creating 2 million jobs a year, the unemployment rate had reached its highest in 45 years, and 65 million youth were jobless in 2017-18.
NITI Aayog's refusal to comment on the unemployment rates reported in the Business Standard story means that questions about the absolute number of jobs created and unemployed persons in the Indian economy between 2011-12 (the latest EUS round) and 2017-18 (the first PLFS round) will remain unanswered until the PLFS report is officially released. The complete findings of the PLFS report are still not in the public, as the report has not been released officially.
"This is why members of NSC resigned", he said. NITI Aayog should not have any role in the collection or publication of NSSO reports.
"The government has not released data on employment as it is still being processed". And critics say the government's claims of economic success have sounded increasingly hollow. "I want to state it very categorically that this data being cited is not finalised and approved by the government and is a draft report".
After the chaotic launch of a national sales tax in July 2017, hundreds of thousands have lost jobs in small businesses.
The gloomy jobs data could be awkward for Modi's Hindu nationalist government to explain with a general election looming and opinion polls already showing the governing Bharatiya Janata Party unlikely to keep its parliamentary majority. Keeping in view India's strong demographic dividend and around 93% of the informal workforce, it is important to improve measures of employment through administrative statistics and complemented by periodic surveys.
The numbers show that Modi's ambitious Make-in-India project, which aims to lift the share of domestic manufacturing from 17 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) to about 25 percent and create jobs for an estimated 1.2 million youth entering the market, has failed to take off. The chief statistician and the DG, NSSO, sign off on the report which is then sent to the NSC which goes over the report and approves it, Sen said while detailing the procedure.