By 2025 India is set to be the most populous and young country with a population of 1.4 billion. The average age of the country being 29, India would account for 28% of the global workforce. Over the next 2 decades, India’s demographic divide places it at the top of an economic upheaval. While other parts of the world face an ageing population, India is poised to dominate the world – if it addresses its skill gap.
The Government Of India (GOI) has revised its skill development agenda and released various schemes to impart vocational training to over 400 million people by 2022. Around 20 ministries, 2 national level agencies, 35 state skill development missions and several Sector Skill Councils (SSCs) are working towards running 70+ schemes for skill development.
GoCheck does a round up of various initiatives by the current government and tracks their progress 2 years after its launch.
National Skill Development Mission (NSDM)
Approved by the Union Cabinet in 2015, the National Skill Development Mission was developed “to create convergence across sectors and States in terms of skill training activities.” The NSDM is supported by National Skill Development Agency (NSDA), National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) and Directorate General of Training (DGT).
A flagship scheme under Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship (MSDE), PMKVY works towards certifying Indian youth in industry-relevant skills. The scheme trains and assesses individuals, at no cost, and provides job opportunities in the trained sector. With a budget of Rs.1,500 crore, PMKVY set out to train over 2 million people in one year. Unfortunately, the scheme was termed a failure in its first year of operation. Having trained 18.03 lakhs individuals in 2015-2016 only 12.4% were placed. The numbers improved significantly with 2,16,671 placements registered in February 2018. Additionally, over 5 lakh skilled workforce have been certified under the Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) program of PMKVY.
The scheme is currently working towards securing better jobs for the trained population. A feat that requires close association with Sector Skill Councils and private organizations.
To support the endeavour of skill development state-of-the-art model training centres called Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Kendra (PMKK) are being developed around the country. Since its launch in 2015, 200+ PMKKs have been established in over 60 districts, with 250 more in the pipeline. The government plans on setting up a PMKK centre in every district of the country along with 100 International SKill Centres.
- National Apprentice Promotion Scheme (NAPS)
To promote apprenticeship training GOI introduced the National Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme. With a budgetary outlay of Rs.10,000 crore, the scheme aims to train over 50 Lakh individuals by 2020. NAPS is the first of its kind that offers financial incentives to employers.
Historically, apprenticeship has been the most effective system of creating a skilled workforce. NAPS pushes employers to engage apprentices while bearing up to 50% of total costs incurred by the employer to train an apprentice.
NAPS is well received by different industry sectors and has sprouted collaborations from top MNCs like Tata Motors and also international collaborations with Government of UK.
The National Institution for Transforming India or NITI Aayog is a policy think tank of GOI. It aims at achieving Sustainable Development Goals by cooperative federalism and industry participation.
As of writing this blog post, NITI Aayog is working on a national policy on Artificial Intelligence, outlining the scope for research, adoption and commercialisation. Other plans under NITI Aayog include the Women Entrepreneurship Platform (WEP), Atal Innovation Mission, AMRUT, Digital India etc.
- Skill Loan Scheme
Looking to improve on your skills? The government is here to help you by providing loans to take up skill development courses. The loan covers from Rs.5,000/- up to Rs. 150,000/- of tuition/ course fee. The skill loan scheme is a replacement of the earlier Indian Banks Association (IBA) Model Loan Scheme for vocational education & training. The interest rates are kept nominal @1.50% over Base Rate of Bank of India with a repayment tenure of up to 7 years.
Skills Acquisition and Knowledge Awareness for Livelihood Promotion (SANKALP) is “outcome oriented projected supported by World Bank”. The national program focuses on developing a national architecture for promoting convergence, regulating skill training, catalyzing industry efforts in vocational training space and ensuring effective governance. Through SANKALP, States will be able to come up with State and District level Skill Development Plans – decentralizing the skill planning system. Launched at the tune of Rs. 4,000 crore, SANKALP aims to provide market relevant training to 3.5 crore youth.
In its next phase, it aims at Skill Strengthening for Industrial Value Enhancement (STRIVE) at a cost of Rs.2,200 crores. STRIVE’s focus would be on backing the apprenticeship programme through industry collaborations and improving the overall quality & market relevance of vocational training provided at ITIs.
The NSDC released the Udaan scheme in 2011 that specifically caters to the youth of Jammu and Kashmir. Under the scheme, graduates and postgraduates of J&K are provided skill training and job opportunities. The scheme follows the private partnership mode (ppp) that is being pushed by the NSDC with a budget of Rs.246 crore.
Unfortunately, the Udaan scheme failed to deliver even after an extension by the GOI. In an investigation by Hindustan Times in 2017, it was revealed that “31,903 candidates joined training as against a target of 90,000; 22,237 completed training; 14,694 were offered jobs and 9,780 accepted their offer.”
Currently, India is lagging behind its ambitious aim to train 400 million individuals by 2022. At this pace, the government may not be able to achieve its target. While the government is pushing for skill development through its various initiatives, what can you do to prepare yourself? Subscribe to our newsletter to receive the latest in skill development news, updates and information.
Also published on Medium.