Education is significant but applying them to practical work requires skill
Rakesh Kumar comes from a poor family, and even after completing his graduation he did not get a job, leading to which he fell into depression. But his despondency vanished when his friend told him about Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) and various courses taught under this scheme to help people like him.
“I visited the institute along with my friend and saw how skill training is imparted by professional trainers. I took admission in electrical course and now after 40 days of my training, I have learnt a lot. Now I can do 2BHK house wiring, 3BHK house wiring and industrial wiring on my own. I am confident to have bright future ahead of me and a job of my choice,” says Kumar.
Similar is the story of Rukmani in Dhaulpur village of Rajasthan who found her new life through stitching garments. “Before starting the stitching school, we were given training for seven days. We were also given a sewing machine and taught how to use it.” The woman here stitches finished garments which fetches them independence as they earn 7000 per month.
Education is significant but applying them to practical work requires skill. Obtrusively, it is not taught as a degree programme. The colossal mismatch between education, employability and employment has been lurking in the face of the country since the advent of modern education system.
The first and the foremost step that the current incumbent government took in shaping the skills landscape was the creation of separate Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, which in the last one year has invested heavily on restructuring and re-energizing the skill ecosystem in the country. It has made some significant efforts in ensuring coordination and convergence across all initiatives and schemes that were active in the skill ecosystem. The year 2014 saw the launch of ‘Skill India’ led by Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) to leverage the potential of India’s aspiring youth thereby equipping them with skill required to acquire sustainable livelihood. In just 15 months, MSDE has made great strides in streamlining and reinvigorating India’s skilling ecosystem.
The ministry was created to capitalise India’s demographic advantage and has so far seen 73 per cent jump in its allocation. In comparison to China, which has 80 per cent skilled workforce, the National Sample Survey Organisation shows India has just four per cent skilled workforce.
The central government will be responsible for meeting three fourth of the target under PMKVY and state government for the remainder. The centre will allocate 25 per cent of the approved expenditure to the states.
According to Skill Development Minister Rajiv Pratap Rudy, this is a big step towards empowering the youth, with more effective training and robust monitoring.
The Union Government allocated around Rs 5,040 crore for skill development across ministries in budget 2015. Certainly, it is an indispensable step for expanding the mission of skill India.
Apparently, most of the job seekers going for skilling programmes are from rural India. Under the existing government-funded programmes, they usually undergo short duration (two-three month) training in sectors such as retail, hospitality, information technology-enabled service, construction, etc. Notably, many of them get placed with urban employers such as retail stores, restaurant chains, housekeeping or domestic business process outsourcing firms in cities such as Bengaluru, Pune and Hyderabad.
The NDA government under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi is trying to expand the opportunities for those all set for employment, to meet the requirement of industry which has often complained that the potential recruit do not possess required skills.
Notably, Cabinet has approved National Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme under which five million people are to be trained by 2019-20 at the cost Rs 10,000 crore. Under PMKVY, six million people will be trained for handling specific jobs and 4 million certified as possessing vocational skills required for employment in industries under the recognition of prior learning programme.
In the last fiscal, under phase 1 of PMKVY the central government trained around 1.97 million people against a target of 2.4 million. As the structures become more robust and the feedbacks are incorporated, Skill India will prove to be a brilliant tool for harnessing the demographic dividends.
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