Skill India campaign of the Government of India, launched on July 15, 2015; aims to train over 500 million youth in various skills in the country by 2020. Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship through this Skill India campaign envisions meeting the challenge of paucity of highly trained workforce and un-employability of large sections of conventionally educated youth, who possess little or no job skills. India needs to equip its workforce with employable skills and knowledge so that they can contribute substantially to the economic growth of the country and this will enable India reap the demographic dividend of it being one of the youngest nations of the world with more than 62% of its population in the working age group and more than 54% of its population below 25 years of age. Apart from meeting its own demand, India has the potential to provide skilled workforce to fill the expected shortfall in the ageing developed world. The initiatives under the campaign are as under:
- National Skill Development Mission
- National Policy for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, 2015
- Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY)
- Skill Loan scheme
- Rural India Skill
National Skill Development Mission was launched on 15.07.2015 to create convergence across sectors and states, in terms of skill training activities. Institutional Training, Infrastructure, Convergence, Trainers, Overseas Employment, Sustainable Livelihoods and Leveraging Public Infrastructure are the building blocks for achieving overall objectives of the Mission.
National Policy for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship 2015, with the primary objective to meet the challenge of skilling at scale with speed, standard (quality) and sustainability, aims to provide an umbrella framework to all skilling activities being carried out within the country, to align them to common standards and link skilling with demand centres. The policy links skills development to improved employability and productivity in paving the way forward for inclusive growth in the country. The skill strategy is complemented by specific efforts to promote entrepreneurship in order to create ample opportunities for the skilled workforce.
Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) is the flagship scheme of the Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship (MSDE). The objective of this Skill Certification Scheme is to enable a large number of Indian youth to take up industry-relevant skill training that will help them in securing a better livelihood. Individuals with prior learning experience or skills will also be assessed and certified under Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL). Under this Scheme, Training and Assessment fees are completely paid by the Government. The Short Term Training imparted in Soft Skills, Entrepreneurship, Financial and Digital Literacy at PMKVY Training Centres (TCs) is expected to benefit candidates of Indian nationality who are either school/college dropouts or unemployed. PMKVY envisages linking the aptitude, aspiration, and knowledge of the skilled workforce it creates with employment opportunities and demands in the market. Every effort thereby needs to be made by the PMKVY TCs to provide placement opportunities to candidates, trained and certified under the Scheme. Training Partners shall also provide support to entrepreneurship development.
Skill Loan Scheme was launched with a view to support youth who wish to go through skill training programmes in the country. Any Indian National who has secured admission in a course run by Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs), Polytechnics or in a school recognised by Central or State education Boards or in a college affiliated to recognised university, training partners affiliated to National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC), Sector Skill Councils, State Skill Mission, State Skill Corporation can avail loan for the purpose. Amount of loan varies from Rs. 5,000 to Rs. 150000 depending on the course, having a repayment period of 3 to 7 years. Simple rate of interest @ 11% and 12% per annum is charged during the period of study.
Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Grameen Kaushalya Yojana (DDU-GKY) was launched on September 25, 2014 Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD); as part of National Rural Livelihood Mission (NRLM), tasked with the dual objectives of adding diversity to the incomes of rural poor families and cater to the career aspirations of rural youth. DDU-GKY is uniquely focused on rural youth between the ages of 15 and 35 years from poor families. As a part of the Skill India campaign, it plays an instrumental role in supporting the social and economic programs of the government like the Make in India, Digital India, Smart Cities and Start-Up India, Stand-Up India campaigns. Over 180 million or 69% of the country’s youth population between the ages of 18 and 34 years, live in its rural areas, of which about 55 million youth are from poor families with no or marginal employment.
As India moves progressively towards becoming a global knowledge economy, it must meet the rising aspirations of its youth. This can be partially achieved through focus on advancement of skills that are relevant to the emerging economic environment. The challenge pertains not only to a huge quantitative expansion of the facilities for skill training, but also to the equally important task of raising their quality.