Job-oriented courses make enrollers happy

Skill India

Above all arguments that Skill India is a half-baked system for providing job opportunities to tackle poverty, the enrollers in this flagship scheme (under Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship), Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY), seem satisfied with the opportunity.

PMKVY was announced on July 16 last year, and this year it completes 10 lakh enrolments under Skill India, 70 per cent of the enrollers have completed their skill trainings since its launch.

Mostly coming from homes which are in perpetual financial crunch, children and even adults have come forward to take up this program. The skills identified are vocational in nature, something which many institutes provide. But enrollers feel the prospects of finding a job are higher if they enrol in this scheme. Firstly because of their trust in their Prime Minister and secondly because the focus of the programme is ‘job oriented’.

The courses are not entirely free for economically weaker section. One has to pay an assessment fee which is “nominal”, based on the structure of the course. The candidates coming from weaker backgrounds take the course on credit. The ‘reward money’, which is provided by PMKVY to these candidates after they are certified, is given to the training partners.

The training period stretches between one to six months, depending on the course structure. For example, Himanshi, 21, has taken one month’s Craft Baker course for which she paid Rs 10, 000. She has received two theory and four practical classes in a week and is yet to write her exam. She is also doing a Masters from an open university.

“I am not afraid of examination, I am sure I will get a job,” Himashi tells Metrolife. Himanshi has finished graduation in Food Technology from Delhi University and says her decision to take this course is well thought out. Like Himanshi, there are many under graduates who have willingly taken up courses from this scheme.

“I have to work in order to support my family, I can’t study in future. So job is my priority,” says Ranjit Kumar, 20, who has done warehousing course and is waiting to get placed.

Safexpress, a logistics company and one of the training partners, has placed many ‘skilled’ fellows in their warehouses. Sailesh Kumar, trainer, says, “These children are mostly drop outs, so we also provide career counselling to them. Most of them don’t intend to study for various reasons. We tell them how they can see a future in this profession.”

Skill India scheme has recognised 40 technical sectors based on current requirements in various industries in the country. A standardised course is structured according to the vastness of the subject. The training partners, who train the fellows, have to follow the standard norms provided by PMKVY.

“We require 1,000 human resources per annum and we train 20 to 30 people per month. After their ‘assessment’ we absorb them in one of our warehouses in any part of the country,” says Kumar.

 “The absorption rate is approximately 70 per cent and rest depends on students’ requirements. Sometimes they fail, at times they don’t like the location and sometimes they are not happy with the salary they are offered.”

Since financial crunch is the main criteria for pursuing the PMKVY scheme, a handsome salary is what everyone looks forward to.

Thirty-five-year-old Desraj from Ambala, Punjab, was earning Rs 7, 000 before enrolling for the warehousing course from Safexpress.  He now earns Rs 10, 500. He came to know about the scheme through a friend who had successfully completed the course and was earning better. He says his current work environment is much better than his previous work which was laborious and physically draining.

Sailesh says that in his training sessions only 25 per cent individuals are above the age of 30 and mostly are undergraduates. Mukul Tajeja, 20 has completed Mutual Fund Assessment course from TeamLease IIJT through PMKVY. He says, “I learnt a lot of theory and also practical work. They also showed us YouTube videos to teach us the know-how of mutual fund investments. I have to sit for a common Association of Mutual Funds of India exam to get a proper job. But I am not afraid of competition.”

He’s in no hurry as he feels confident about the course. He also adds that one of the reasons for him to take the course was Prime Minister’s speech on Skill India, where he had said that he wants India to become the skill capital of the world.

“Even if you do engineering you can be jobless, because you are not ‘skilled’, over here we are provided skills on job-oriented courses. With more experience we will also get paid better,” says Tajeja.

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