Over 1.28 crore youngsters have been trained under the ambitious Skill India project of the Centre but only a little more than half (56%) of the candidates have managed to get job placements after completing their courses, government data shows. Among those employed, the salary bracket ranges from Rs 10,000 to Rs 18,000 a month on average. Most of those trained under these initiatives are men and women do not even comprise half of those enrolled.
Under the Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) programme, which was launched on July 15, 2015, by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the occasion of the first World Youth Skills Day, over 1.28 crore candidates were trained, of which only 46 lakh are women while the majority are men, as per official data from the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship. Only 450 of those trained under the initiative identified themselves as transgender. Further, about 45,000 differently-abled people were skilled under the programme, as per the official data.
State-wise, youth from Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, and Assam have received the most training, the data shows.
The low salaries and a skewed gender ratio could also be because most of the training given under these initiatives is for blue-collared jobs. So far, the highest amount of training given under the PMKVY programme is in streams like electronics and hardware, apparel, agriculture, and retail. Media and entertainment was the fifth-highest opted-for course across India.
With the Atmanirbhar Bharat initiative, the Skill India mission will now be expanded to ‘new-age’ skills, too, says the Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Ministry.
Calling the government’s Digital India programme a “vision to transform India into a digitally empowered society and knowledge economy”, the National Skill Development Council (NSDC) has introduced 11 new-age courses, including geo-informatics assistant, aeronautical structure and equipment fitter, additive manufacturing technician (3D printing), remotely piloted aircraft or drone pilot, electrician-power distribution, technician-mechatronics, solar technician (electrical), internet of things (smart agriculture), internet of things (smart healthcare ), internet of things (smart city), and smartphone technician-cum-app tester.
While the number of ITIs has been increased from 11,847 in 2014 to 14,690 in 2021, the budget released to states has gone from Rs 1,150.22 crore for PMKVY 2.0 (2016-20) to Rs 22.02 crore for PMKVY 3.0 (2020-21), according to the ministry.