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India: LabourMin to revamp skill development schemes

The Indian Express, New delhi, 13 December 2013 - With an aim to skill nearly 500 million youth by 2022, the labour ministry has initiated a thorough review and revamp of the Skill Development Initiative Scheme and vocational training schemes such as the Industrial Training Institutes and Apprenticeship programmes.

The ministry has now set up an internal working group to review all aspects of functioning of such training schemes. "ITIs are the backbone of vocational training infrastructure in the country. The need to revitalise the ITIs and improve the quality of training imparted by them needs no emphasis," said a circular by the ministry.

At present, just about 3.1 million people are imparted skills every year despite over 9,400 ITIs and 23,800 establishments providing apprenticeship training in the country.

"Vocational training can provide crucial skills required in the job market. But at present, the problem is that the design and quality of courses are not up-to-date. Also we have to find strategies to provide these courses to more and more people," said a senior official. The review will focus not only on the courses provided but more importantly the quality of courses and instructors at these institutes.

Accordingly, the working group has been mandated to look into issues of recruitment of faculty, training of instructors, opening training centres in under served areas, distance learning as well as the focus on employability. The committee is expected to submit its report by middle of January next year.

Set up under the labour ministry's directorate general of employment, vocational trainings schemes such as the ITIs, Apprenticeship training scheme and Skill Development Initiative Schemes are aimed at providing training and skills and improve employability of youth such as school drop outs and high school graduates as well as existing workers in the unorganised sector.


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