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Learning unlocks all doors

Newsletter Issue 27 : October 1, 2009 - October 31, 2009

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vision of a skilled India

Sanjeev Dhawan

The world is graying.

One of the few countries that are young is India. It is also the most populous young country.

Set on a high growth it needs skilled manpower. It also will be a major supplier of skilled manpower to the graying world.

It is estimated that India will need to develop 500 million skilled manpower by 2022 to meet this daunting challenge.

It requires probably the biggest ever training endeavourer in the world history.

Our existing vocational training infrastructure (Presently there are over 4971 ITIs (1869 in Govt. & 3102 in Private Sector) having a total seating capacity of 7.18 lakhs) is capable of producing 3 million skilled manpower a year and has so far produced 30 million skilled people. This underlines the gravity of the situation. The gap is overwhelming; not only in terms of quantity but also in terms of quality.

The current landscape of vocational training in India comprises just about 5,500 Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) and 1,745 Polytechnics, compared to 500,000 similar institutes in China. Further, the US boasts about 1,500 trade training programmes compared to India’s measly 171. India’s current vocational training infrastructure caters to just 2.5 million annually, whereas the country is adding almost 18 million to its population every year. Even more critically, India has to move millions from farming jobs to non-farming jobs if it has to give itself any chance of improving the plight of the 255 million desperately poor engaged in farming. It is estimated that only 5 per cent of the youth are vocationally trained in any single skill in India, compared to 96 per cent in Korea and even 22 per cent in Botswana.

In the absence of proper vocational training infrastructure (in quantity & quality), most high-growth industries are already facing shortage of skilled manpower, leading to wage inflation on the one hand and slowdown of growth on the other. The global opportunity is also being missed by India while over 31 per cent of employers worldwide are struggling to find qualified manpower, especially those in manual trades. It would be tragic if India is unable to respond to this challenge or benefit from this huge opportunity to be the supplier of skilled workforce not only to its own economy, but also to the rest of the world.

excerpts from

Business Standard: Arvind Singhal: A big challenge and a huge opportunity 

To meet skilled labour deficit, UPA-2 to set up 1,500 more ITIs

 Mahendra Kumar Singh | TNN New Delhi

UPA-2 has drawn up an ambitious roadmap to meet the shortage of skilled manpower in the country, with the Centre planning to extend training facilities to 1,034.80 lakh people by enhancing training capacity by 2022. To meet the deficit which may hinder the country’s growth target, the government has planned establishment of around 1,500 Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) and 10,000 skill development centres under the National Skill Development Mission through collaborative action with the private sector. According to the roll out plan, around 293.41 lakh people will be trained under the craftsmen training scheme, 54 lakh under the apprenticeship training scheme, 110.5 lakh under skill development initiatives. Skill development centres, which will be set up through the privatepublic partnership (PPP) model, will impart training to around 572 lakh people by the next five-year plan. Under the grand mission, which will be reviewed by PM Manmohan Singh on Monday, the government aims to revitalize and restructure all 969 employment exchanges so that they can provide quality guidance on capability assessment, career counselling, vocational guidance and training related information to youth and not just registering candidates for sponsoring them against notified vacancies. “Introduction of shortterm modular courses and issuing scholarship reimbursable vouchers to institutions that focus on skill development are also on the government’s agenda to meet the ambitious target,” an official pointed out. The government hopes that 70 million jobs will be created during the 11th Plan (2007-12).

One of the many initiatives that the Government of India has undertaken is the PPP ( Public Private Partnership) scheme.

CII organised a Workshop on “Accelerating the Upgradation Process of ITIs under Public Private Partnership” on 12th October 2009 at Gurgaon.

The workshop showcased the achievements of many ITIs under PPP scheme. The achievements were laudable. These were undertaken under CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) initiatives of the respective business organisations.

Two points came out clearly.

  • The initiative is not commercially viable.

  • The scale of initiative is not in proportion to the challenge.

Therefore It may well be considered one of the ways to address the gigantic task, but not the only one.

There are three major impediments in achieving the objectives set under the national skill development policy.

  1. An ITI (Industrial Training Institute) takes years to build.

  2. It requires big investments for building & equipments.

  3. Students' capacity to pay is low.

These impediments make the present mode of vocational education commercially unviable. Also with the current development time frame, it is difficult to achieve the ambitious targets. This calls for innovative solutions to identify the skill requirements, develop the course content and delivery systems in line with the challenging requirements. It is important to create a commercially viable model for a skill institute that can be quickly multiplied. This will create a pull for the private sector to lap up the opportunity.