Various Bodies for Skill Development Sector

Skill refers to the abilities that one possesses, using which one can carry out pre-determined results often with the minimum outlay of time, energy, or both. Skilled workers are generally more trained, higher paid, and have more responsibilities than unskilled workers. Thus, Skills and knowledge are the driving forces of economic growth and social development for any country. Countries with higher and better levels of skills adjust more effectively to the challenges and opportunities of world of work.

National Skill Development Policy- Objective

India’s population, which is currently at 1.21 billion, is fast expanding at a rate of 17% and integrating rapidly into the global economy. India is among the ‘young’ countries in the world, with the proportion of the work force in the age group of 15-59 years, increasing steadily.

As the proportion of working age group of 15-59 years will be increasing steadily, India has the advantage of “demographic dividend”. Harnessing the demographic dividend through appropriate skill development efforts would provide an opportunity to achieve inclusion and productivity within the country and also a reduction in the global skill shortages. Large scale skill development is thus an imminent imperative.

This led to the government to announce a National Skill Development Policy, which set a target of skilling 500 million people by 2022.

Current Capacity of Skill Development

Presently only 2% of the total workforce in India have undergone skills training. Potentially, the target group for skill development comprises all those in the labour force, including those entering the labour market for the first time, those employed in the organized sector and those working in the unorganized sector. India’s current capacity of the skill development programs is 3.1 million.

Prime Minister’s National Council on Skill Development

Prime Minister’s National Council on Skill Development, under the Chairmanship of Prime Minister was set up as an apex institution for policy direction and review. The Ministers for Human Resource Development, Finance, Industries, Rural Development, Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation, Labour and Employment and Micro Small & Medium Enterprises are members. Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission, Chairperson of the National Manufacturing Competitiveness Council, Chairperson of the National Skill Development Corporation and 6 experts in the area of skill development are other members. Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister is the Member Secretary to the Council.

National Skill Development Co-ordination Board

The National Skill Development Coordination Board has been set up under chairmanship of the Deputy Chairman of The Planning Commission in the Public Private Partnership mode (PPP). It formulates strategies to implement the decisions of the Prime Minister’s Council on National Skill Development and also monitors and evaluates the outcomes of the various other schemes and programs for the council. It also develops appropriate and practical solutions and strategies to address regional and Social Imbalances, ensures quality control in Vocational Training and Education, monitors private participation strategies and helps put in place sectoral action plans. It has planned to set up 1500 new ITIs and 5000 skill development centres, across the country as well as a National Vocational Education Qualifications Framework (NVQF) for affiliations and accreditation in the vocational, educational and training systems.

The members of the board are the secretaries of following ministries:

  • Human Resource Development
  • Labour and Employment
  • Rural Development
  • Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation
  • Finance

Chairperson/Chief Executive Officer of the National Skill Development Corporation, Secretaries of four States by rotation, for a period of two years, and three distinguished Academicians/Subject Area Specialists are other members. Secretary, Planning Commission is Member secretary of the Board.

National Skill Development Corporation

The National Skill Development Corporation is a non-profit company under the Companies Act 1956. The head of the Corporation is a person of eminence/reputed professional in the field of Skill Development. Its functions are:

  • Identification of skill development needs including preparing a catalogue of types of skills, range and depth of skills to facilitate individuals to choose from them.
  • Development of a sector skill development plan and maintain skill inventory.
  • Determining skills/competency standards and qualifications.
  • Standardization of affiliation and accreditation process.
  • Participation in Affiliation, accreditation, examination and certification.
  • Plan and execute Training of Trainers.
  • Promotion of academies of excellence.
  • Establishment of a well structured sector specific Labour Market Information System (LMIS) to assist planning and delivery of training.

National Council for Vocational Training: (NCVT)

NCVT has its main functions of design, development and maintenance of NVQF which includes:

  • Setting up a framework for competency standards, structure of courses, credit structure, accumulation and certification.
  • Setting up a framework for affiliation and accreditation of institutions.
  • Quality control mechanism.
  • Labour market information system and dissemination of information at the national level.
  • Monitoring and evaluation on the effectiveness and efficiency of national skill development efforts through appropriate reporting and communication mechanism.

Proposed National Skill Development Authority

National Skill Development Authority is a proposed permanent body as “attached office” of the Planning Commission that will be the main agency driving the Centre’s skill development programme. The authority has yet to come to life, however, the finance ministry, has questioned the idea of a central authority, suggesting that the proposed structure has weaknesses. It has argued that the current system of individual ministries piloting their skill development programmes and defending them before the Expenditure Finance Committee is preferable since it is the ministry’s domain knowledge, and the vetting process ensures that there is clarity of purpose and that the scheme will achieve stated goals. The ministry has argued that line ministries work in close co-ordination with states to implement the scheme, and it would not be feasible for the Authority to achieve the same level of co-ordination. The ministries of human resource development and labour, which manage most of the skill development programmes, too have questioned the need for this centralised body. They have suggested that the Authority will lead to duplication of efforts.

On the other side, the planning commission says that the proposed Authority will only co-ordinate and synergise the current efforts by the ministries. The Authority is expected to oversee, support and speed up existing skill development efforts of the central government and state-level skill development missions. It will lay down strategies, financing and governing models to expedite skill development activities, and harmonise standards. (CGS-16/ Target 2013 Content)

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