Skilling body aims at 5 lakh apprenticeship contracts

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Kolkata, Sep 11 (IANS) The National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) has set a target of facilitating about five lakh apprenticeship contracts in 12 months, its MD and CEO Manish Kumar said here on Tuesday.

About 3-4 months back, the agency was given the task of promoting the apprenticeship programme, he said.

Kumar said that though apprenticeship existed over the years in India flexibilities were brought in the programme in recent years.

“It was more of a regulated programme but now it has become a facilitating one. It earlier focused on manufacturing but the programme has now been made possible in services sector too. Job roles were earlier defined by the government but now the industries can,” he said, adding that a scheme was rolled out to support industries to take up the apprenticeship programme.

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With a target of 50 lakh apprentices to be trained by 2019-20, the National Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme was launched in 2016 with an outlay of Rs 10,000 crore.

“Around 10 lakh candidates have been registered in the apprenticeship training portal,” the agency’s Senior Head (Apprentice Division) Surajit Roy said.

Asked about the slow progress, Kumar said: “The programme’s implementation lies with the Director General of Training (DGT) under the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship. Now, this has got expanded as the NSDC and state governments have become a part. Several agencies are being involved to scale it up further.”

Kumar said the supply side in terms of defining job roles, training partners were ensured and the apprenticeship will make the demand side “strong” as industries engage apprentices with contracts.

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He said that to popularise the programme among industries, the NSDC is conducting road shows across cities In India.

“About 25 places will be covered. The promotional activities have already been held in Bengaluru, Chennai and New Delhi. We are organising a road show here with participants from 60-odd industries,” Kumar said.

Roy said that eight workshops had been conducted so far and 300-odd companies have shown interest to run the apprenticeship programme.

–IANS

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