Chandigarh: The state government is all set to give a big push to 'Skill Punjab' to meet human resource requirement of upcoming industries and to ensure they were fully prepared to meet the global competition.
Speaking during the session, 'Skilling India for Global Competitiveness: Plugging the Skill Gap' here on Friday, Punjab's Secretary, Industrial Training and Technical Education, R K Verma said that it was imperative for the state to focus on skills and training for productivity and competitive edge.
He said that the key challenges to the skill development are strengthening State Skill Development Missions, private sector participation in skill development, expanding outreach of skilling programmes, availability of trainers, making skill inspirational, career guidance and post training placement tracking.
Verma underlined the need for skill training with regard to demand, effective counselling and guidance.
"India has a huge advantage of its demographic dividend with 65 per cent of its population under the age of 35 years. However, the manner in which it will use the opportunity will determine whether it will reap its demographic dividend. India must stress and invest in education and training so that it is able to achieve its target of double digit inclusive growth", said Vikram Sahgal, Chairman, Chandigarh Committee, PHD Chamber.
About 63 per cent of the school students drop out at different stages before reaching Class X. Only about 2.5 million vocational training seats are available in the country whereas about 12.8 million persons enter the labour market every year, he added.
"Even out of these training places, very few are available for early school dropouts. Thus, a large number of school drop outs do not have access to skill development for improving their employability, added Sahgal.
Anil Kumar, Principal Secretary, Industrial Training, Haryana, while echoing the concerns raised by Verma, said, "There is an urgent need to have close interaction between the skill requirements of the industry and the available training and employment avenues besides keeping in mind the global challenge of competitiveness."
Kumar said practical industrial training should be imparted at the industry floor itself since the technology is changing so fast and getting obsolete, rather than having massive outdated technological infrastructure at ITIs, they should be imparting only the basics.