NEW DELHI: Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti has asked New Delhi to revisit the Udaan scheme and instead of sending youth outside the State for training, the corporate houses, presently operating in J&K, must train them and provide them employment within the State.
She said this while speaking at the Governing Council of National Skill Development Mission (NSDM) adding that with the kind of infrastructure available in Jammu and Kashmir, it will be very difficult to achieve the targets on skill development, unless the intake capacity of ITIs and Polytechnics is increased with they also being upgraded.
She pitched for a joint effort by the government, the public sector enterprises and the corporate houses are needed to make skill development initiative gainful for the unemployed youth.
“We have to launch a coordinated effort to empower large sections of conventionally-educated youth with requisite skills to enhance their employability,” the Chief Minister said.
Mehbooba said her government has already nominated a Nodal Head for the Skill Development initiatives so that activities of different departments are coordinated in a much better way. “Different departments must concentrate in their areas of expertise so that youth are provided with base-level and up-graded skills, which will enable them to get productive employment in sync with the market requirement,” she said adding that government has already roped in some corporate houses for value-addition of ITIs and Polytechnics in the State under Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiative.
The Chief Minister also asked the Government of India to also revisit the Udaan scheme and instead of sending our youth outside the State for training, the corporate houses, presently operating in J&K, must train them here and provide them employment within the State.
She said the PSUs like NHPC should earmark a percentage of profits on ‘skill development’ initiatives in the areas where these operate.
She also called for having a skill development component in the budgets of major union ministries, like Power, Defense and Railways to be utilized for economically weaker and geographically disadvantageous states like J&K and the Northeast.
She said in order to ensure area-specific development, the State Government has done regional mapping wherein each district in the state has been evaluated in terms of a particular skill. “We have worked out a mechanism with private firms wherein our skilled youth will be trained by firms like HAL, BHEL, Bharti Infratel, NTPC and ONGC for corporate jobs,” she added.
The Chief Minister also suggested transforming ITIs into multi-skill institutes as well as roping in existing school and college infrastructure in the evenings to train more youth. “Our aim is not only to expand facilities for skill training, but also address the important task of raising their quality,” she added.
“All the three regions of the state including Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh have distinct heritage promotion potential and we have to train our local youth in the related skills to help them earn respectable livelihood,” she said.
Mehbooba said since equity is also a focus of the National Policy for Skill Development, targeting skilling opportunities for socially and geographically marginalized and disadvantageous groups.
She said another specific focus area of the policy is ‘Development and Entrepreneurship programmes for women saying that J&K is taking a lead in this critical area. We are in the process of setting up two dedicated Entrepreneurship Centers for women one each at Jammu and Srinagar and would seek support for incubation, skill enhancement and marketing from both PSUs and Corporate houses,” she said.
The Chief Minister said J&K has to leverage Information Technology to scale up training by setting up virtual classrooms and online skill development courses where industry specific content is created and delivered
To help the skilled youth setup their own income generating, Mehbooba said easy loans should be available to skilled youth without any collaterals.
For incentivizing skill development, Mehbooba said the corporate houses should be given tax incentives beyond CSR threshold for participating in skill development initiatives.
To ensure employability of the skilled youth, Mehbooba said NSQF (National Skills Qualifications Framework) certification should be made the basis for employment in the related jobs by the corporate houses.