The authors of the GIN feature, editor-in-chief Asif Ismail and editor-at-large Sujeet Rajan, cited a CII study, titled "Indian Roots, American Soil: A Look at Indian Companies in the U.S. Economy," to try to make their case. Their aim is to refute the "powerful narrative in American minds about Indian companies, a result of years of campaigning against outsourcing," which is "that they operate in the United States mainly to send jobs back home, or wrench it by hiring cheap labour from India." But anyone who actually takes the time to thoroughly read the article finds that only a small percentage of those jobs created in the United States are actually held by Americans. According to a chart that GIN lifted from the CII study, only 10.3 percent of IT and business process outsourcing jobs created in the United States by Indian companies are held by Americans.
The GIN story goes on to make the legitimate point that Indian companies in other industries here have a much higher percentage of American employees. In the case of health care, for example, the ratio is 98.9 percent local hires. What we don't know is what sort of presence Indian health care companies have in the United States, and what that percentage means in real numbers of jobs for Americans. What we do know is that the GIN story is outrageous. Its entire premise about Indian companies creating jobs in the United States is horribly misleading, because the vast majority of those jobs - about 90 percent in the case of the IT industry, which has by far the largest Indian footprint of any sector here - are held by people from India.
The headline of the original GIN story is, "Here's How India Inc Insources Jobs to America." That's a perfectly legitimate headline for what could have been a legitimate story, because it is certainly the case that there are some jobs that have been insourced to America by Indian companies. Unfortunately, GIN completely misrepresented the facts in attempting to make its case. It refers to job creation in the United States, the natural implication of which is job creation for Americans, when in reality the reference is to jobs created in the United States, only a fraction of which are held by Americans.
But it's worth noting that GIN isn't the only outfit that committed an egregious act here. When The Economic Times in India picked up the story, it changed the headline to the outlandish, "How the Tata Group, Infosys, Wipro & Essar Are the Biggest Job Creators in the U.S.," which was a further distortion of already misrepresented information in the GIN chart. So both media outlets are party to a disservice that the American work force just doesn't need right now. This story is going to be reprinted and forwarded relentlessly, and a lot of nave people are going to believe the absurd notion that Indian companies are the top creators of jobs for Americans.
This sort of shameless, distasteful propagandizing is doing nothing but fueling resentment and distrust among American workers. Those of us who welcome and value globalization, and long for a united humankind that creates more opportunity for people of all nations, are thwarted by this senselessness. This isn't the answer to the backlash in the United States against the abuse of our visa programs. The answer is to stop the abuse.