In a significant move towards establishing a robust skill-centric and industry-ready ecosystem in the North-Eastern Region (NER), Shri Dharmendra Pradhan, the Hon’ble Minister for Education, Skill Development, and Entrepreneurship, along with Shri G. Kishan Reddy, the Hon’ble Union Minister for Culture, Tourism and Development Of North Eastern Region (DoNER), have launched a special initiative titled ‘Empowering Futures: Skill Development and Entrepreneurship in North-East’ on August 8th, 2023.
Under the ambit of this initiative, a strategic plan has been set in motion to provide industry-relevant skill training programs to 2.5 lahks talented youth hailing from the NER. This transformative effort encompasses an extensive array of schemes and initiatives, including the prominent Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY), the forward-looking National Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme (NAPS), and the impactful Jan Shikshan Sansthans (JSS).
The government has allocated Rs. 360 crores to support inclusive development, nurture entrepreneurship, and drive socio-economic growth. Efforts are focused on providing vocational education and skill development across sectors like agriculture, tourism, handicrafts, and IT.
The event was addressed by Shri Dharmendra Pradhan, Minister for Education, Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Govt of India; Shri G Kishan Reddy, Minister for Tourism, Culture and Development of North-Eastern Region, Govt of India; Shri Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Minister of State for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Electronics and IT; Shri. Jayanta Mallabaruah, Minister Public Health Engineering, Skill Development Employment and Entrepreneurship and Tourism, Government of Assam; Shri. Maotoshi Longkumar, MLA, Advisor to Labour, Employment, Skill Development & Entrepreneurship and Excise Department, Government of Nagaland; Shri. Bhim Hang Limboo, Public health engineering and Water security, Water Resources and River Development, Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Government of Sikkim; Shri Atul Kumar Tiwari, Secretary, Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship.
Speaking on the Occasion, Shri Dharmendra Pradhan, Hon’ble Minister for Education and Skill Development and Skill Development said, “India is undergoing a remarkable transformation into the global Skill Hub, and I take great pride in witnessing the NER effectively harnessing the array of emerging opportunities before it. Our overarching goal is to eradicate unemployment from India’s landscape, propelling us toward becoming a developed and self-reliant nation – an Aatmanirbhar Bharat. We persistently strive to empower the local youth of NER by instilling them with employability skills and a resilient entrepreneurial mindset that seamlessly aligns with the ever-evolving demands of industries. With unwavering dedication, we are shaping a future where NER’s youth are equipped to thrive. As part of the special package for the NER, the inauguration of these skill-centric initiatives is destined to be a transformative and life-altering endeavour”.
“I am glad to launch this special skill development and entrepreneurship initiative for our North-Eastern states. The initiative will transform lives and better prepare the #AmritPeedhi of our Ashtalakshmi states. A robust skill development mission is essential for turning Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s vision for a developed India into reality. With a whole-of-a-govt approach, we are working to build capacities of our youth and make India the skill capital of the world,” he further added.
The Special Initiative of “Transforming Lives- Building Futures: Skill and Entrepreneurship Development in North-East will include:
- 2 Lakh skill training under PMKVY
- 30,000 Apprenticeship Engagements under National Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme (NAPS)
- 20,000 to be skilled under JSS
- Quality enhancement of ITIs under skill strengthening for industrial value enhancement (STRIVE)
- Strengthening of Polytechnics
- Special projects will be taken up for the people of the North-East region under SANKALP.
- Skill India International Centre to be set up to promote overseas job opportunities.
Shri G. Kishan Reddy, Hon’ble Union Minister for Culture, Tourism and Development of North-Eastern Region, praised the inception of the initiative and highlighted that this MSDE-led program will empower over 2.5 lakh youth in the first phase, equipping them with skills for both domestic and global employment. This aligns with the continuous commitment of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s government to position the NER as a driving force for progress.
Shri Rajeev Chandrashekar, Minister of State, Skill Development and Entrepreneurship & Electronics, IT, said, “Over the past nine years, our Prime Minister has worked relentlessly to create a conducive skill ecosystem by emphasizing education, skilling and innovation. We are now looking into the future with current trends that can shape our skilling strategies. We are one of the youngest countries in the world with a demography of great relevance to global economies. Digitalization is accelerating at an unprecedented pace, and Digital will be how we see our future. With the tremendous number of new opportunities being created in both entrepreneurship and jobs, the need for skills has heightened. Transforming Lives and Building Future is not just a slogan; this is a mission for our Young Indians of the North-East. We believe that the future of New India is bright and skilling is the passport to prosperity.“
The ‘Skill Development and Entrepreneurship in North-East’ initiative emphasizes aligning courses with the National Skills Qualifications Framework (NSQF), enhanced by a digital infrastructure to cultivate versatile professionals. The event also discussed the importance of increasing industry involvement to match skill demand, simplifying training modules, developing curricula, and bolstering training infrastructure for skill enhancement in an ‘earn while learn’ format.
Over the past nine years, the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) has expanded the network of ITIs to 106 in the northeastern region, training over 3 lakh individuals and aiding 1000 entrepreneurs through the Indian Institute of Entrepreneurship (IIE). MSDE has trained approximately 12 lakh candidates in textile, handloom, construction, apparel, agriculture, electronics, and healthcare sectors under PMKVY.
In the past seven years, NAPS has trained 38,240 candidates in 1,693 north-east establishments. Furthermore, the centre’s accomplishment of training over 98,000 beneficiaries, with 72% women, through JSS underscores the creation of a robust skill ecosystem in the northeast, empowering youth with essential skills for employment.