Skill Development Program

WORK DONE BY THE GOVERNMENT, In 2009, The National Policy on Skill Development was approved by the Indian cabinet. Its main objectives were creating a better system for skilling the youth of India to improve the situation of unemployment in the country and in the process, training them to have internationally recognized skills and qualifications. It was found out that India had a demographic advantage over other nations owing to its high percentage of the population of young people who could make a strong workforce. That could strengthen the economic condition of India as skilling more people would ensure a higher employability rate. The youth play a critical role in achieving the economic prosperity of any country as they are fresh and bright minds ready to grasp any learning imparted to them.

“Skill is the unified force of experience, intellect, and passion in their operation.”- John Ruskin.

The National Policy on Skill Development focused on reducing the mismatch between demand and supply of skilled workforce, ensuring active participation of women, disabled and backward and marginalized classes of the society. Skill Development had been a top agenda even when the 11th Five Year Plan was crafted (2007-2012). The Government had made an allocation of more than twenty-two billion rupees for the planning scheme in the 11th Five Year Plan. In the 12th Five Year Plan, Skill Development was made a priority again and it was planned that SSCs (Skill Sector Councils) would be set up to ensure quality vocational programs. SSCs are national organizations that collaborate and bring together all stakeholders. Advertisement campaigns were planned across major states like Maharashtra, Orissa, and West Bengal, and cash incentives were also decided upon to attract the youth to join the vocational programs.

Initiatives by Government and Limitations of the Skill Development Programs

Some of the sectors which were recognized to be highly lucrative in the Skill Development scheme were Real Estate, Beauty and Wellness, Retail, Textile, IT, Healthcare, Media, and Entertainment. Ministries of the Union Government and State Government set up their own schemes and plans and created infrastructures for skill development in their respective areas. State Governments created State Skill Development Missions (SSDMs) which acted as the pivotal bodies supervising skilling activities in the states. Hundreds of ITIs, polytechnics, vocational secondary schools were set up. Some of the national level training schemes included Craftsmen Training Scheme (CTS), Apprenticeship Training Scheme (ATS), Advanced Vocational Training Scheme (AVTS), and Women’s Training Scheme. Speaking about SSDMs were set up in Karnataka, Kerala, Gujarat, and Orissa among others. In Rajasthan, training was imparted in remote areas with the help of mobile vans. In Madhya Pradesh, house-maids were trained in skills necessary for maid jobs. In Gujarat, Kaushalya Vardhan Kendra or the KVK project was responsible for dealing with women-centered training.          

Even before the Skill India Mission of 2015, Skill Development was given utmost importance to skill and empower the youth, women, and school dropouts so that they could meet the industry requirements, promote entrepreneurship and increase employability. It won’t be wrong to say that planning about Skill Development early has helped India in several ways.

“It is today that we create the world of the future.”- Eleanor Roosevelt

Shouma Banerjee



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