Free Press Journal

Sub-group on skill development calls for strengthening SSDMs


Chandigarh: A NITI Aayog sub-group headed by Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal has underscored the need for reorienting and strengthening the role of SSDMs to improve the outreach of skill development. In a report submitted to Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently, the sub-group proposed that a three-tier structure of State Skill Development Missions (SSDMs) — at state, district and block level — should be constituted to facilitate the outreach.

The report has also recommended pooling of resources at the state-level and prioritising on the skills, including traditional skills, relevant to the states. Focus was laid on strengthening industry coordination with SSDMs through involvement of Sector Skill Councils and industry conglomerates operating in the states.

The states have been impressed upon to explore enacting a legislation on Right of Youth to Skill Development as was done by the Chhattisgarh government, the report said. To address shortage of trainers in the skill space, the report recommended involving retired defence/government personnel, para military personnel and teachers in providing skill training.

Besides, the infrastructure available with railways, educational institutions could be used for providing skill training in the rural and remote areas. The private sector should be encouraged to make available their shop floor as well as manpower for skill training, it said.

To widen the reach of skill training to women, the report has recommended developing flexible timing in modular training programmes to facilitate women who could not afford longer training, particularly in the rural areas.

Training programmes in non-conventional trades, such as plumbing, electrician, as well as in life skills need to be provided to encourage women to enter the labour market, it said.

The report has recommended local body functionaries to help in creating database of youth for skill training. The functionaries could be assigned additional duty of door to door campaign, parents counselling and listing of unemployed youth for skilling, it said. A mechanism should be devised whereby success stories or innovative measures taken by different states were documented, shared, and up-scaled and replicated on a regular basis by local bodies/NGOs.