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Govt of India report: Skill development centres promoted crony capitalism, wasted away Rs 2,500 crore

By Our Representative
A recent Government of India report  has said that its skill development programmes have actually promoted “hotbed of crony capitalism”, with what were supposed to be “industry-run” centres having actually extracted “maximum benefit from public funds.”
The report regrets that an amount of Rs 2,500 crore of public funds was spent to benefit the private sector without serving the twin purposes of meeting the exact skill needs of the industry and providing employment to youth at decent wages.
It says, many of its initial loans of around Rs 1,500 crore – nearly equivalent to the cost of setting up an Indian Institute of Technology (Rs 1,748 crore) – were not paid back, even as providing a list of 15 defaulting skill training centres set up under public-private partnership.
Prepared by the Committee for Rationalization & Optimization of the Functioning of the Sector Skill Councils (SSCs) constituted by the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Government of India, and submitted April this year, the report says, the Sector Skill Councils (SSCs), started setting up in 2010-11, were actually supposed to be “industry-led and industry-governed.”
Mandated to ensure that skill development is in accordance with “the actual needs of the industry”, the report, however, says, SSCs “are neither ‘of’ the industry, nor ‘by’ the industry and nor ‘for’ the industry”, as the direct involvement of the industry in the SSCs has remained “quite peripheral.”
“Most of them have been sponsored/promoted by various industry associations, which is not the same thing as being promoted by employers”, the report says, adding, in majority of cases SSCs are not owned by employers.
Workers with formal skills in different countries
Observing “huge shortage of qualified trainers”, the report says, “SSCs made a mockery of trainers training by giving fresh diploma and engineering graduates 2-5 day training to become a qualified trainer. The instructor training is of one year duration but despite the efforts of the government, the training capacity of the trainers still stands at 8,268 per annum while we require at least 20,000 trainers per annum.”
Based on the report, www.indiaspend.com, a well-known data analysis site, says, India’s goal of skilling 400 million people under the National Skills Development Programme 2015 is “too large, unnecessary and unattainable”.
The 2015 National Policy for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship has estimated the need to skill 402 million people over the next seven years – to train 104 million fresh entrants and re-skill/up-skill the existing 298 million farm and non-farm sector workforce, the site says, adding, however, “The government has been unable to meet its annual targets set by various ministries and departments for any but one of the last five years, 2013-14.”
Accusing the government’s skill training programmes have set “wrong targets and wasted public funds”, the site says, SSCs proposed “huge physical targets” of training and certifying institutions and people – both trainees and trainers–on an “arbitrary basis,” without formulating a sectoral labour market information system and sectoral skill development plan.
Quoting a media report, the site says, nearly 40% of the enrolled trainees in skill development centres in three states – Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan – were found to be “ghost entries” following which the ministry was forced to suspend allocation of new centres in these states.

Comments

Uma Sheth said…
Will we ever hear of a government scheme run honestly and without bias?

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