Vocational education can check migration, says PMO official | dehradun | Hindustan Times
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Vocational education can check migration, says PMO official

It was time the Uttarakhand government focused on enhancing employability of the youth by setting up vocational institutes across the state so that fast increasing forced migration from the hills could be checked, suggested Bhaskar Khulbe, secretary to Prime Minister Narendra Modi

dehradun Updated: Nov 05, 2017 20:16 IST
Deep Joshi
Chief minister TS Rawat and other dignitaries inaugurate a seminar of Uttarakhand’s progress in the last 17 years, in Dehradun on Sunday.
Chief minister TS Rawat and other dignitaries inaugurate a seminar of Uttarakhand’s progress in the last 17 years, in Dehradun on Sunday. (HT Photo)

It was time the Uttarakhand government focused on enhancing employability of the youth by setting up vocational institutes across the state so that fast increasing forced migration from the hills could be checked, suggested Bhaskar Khulbe, secretary to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“The only way whereby distress migration from the hills and rural-urban migration can be checked is by increasing the people’s employability by creating opportunities for skill development,” Khulbe said. “If the state government manages to do that it won’t need central funds to boost development,” he added.

Khulbe, who hails from the state, was speaking at a seminar on ‘Raibar: Uttarakhand Calling’, hosted by the BJP government as “build up” for the state’s 18th Foundation Day falling on November 9.

Like him several sons of the soil from Uttarakhand holding top positions in different sectors under the Central government participated in the daylong seminar that was organised to assess the state’s journey in the past 17 years.

Among them were the Army chief General Bipin Rawat, the director general of Coast Guard Rajendra Singh, the CBFC chairman Prasoon Joshi, the Railway Board chairman Ashwini Lohani and the vice chairman of Rural Development and Migration Commission SS Negi.

Khulbe noted that not much has been done in Uttarkhand to check the forced migration. “For instance, there are not many establishments like Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) that can play a key role in ensuring skill development among the youth,” he said, suggesting that the state government set up ITIs across the hill state.

Khulbe suggested that the chief minister “select” a district, where institutes such as ITIs could be set up to enhance the people’s employability. “If such an initiative is taken, I will personally extend all help that would be required,” he said, adding that setting up vocational centres such as ITIs should form a part of the district development plans.

Khulbe suggested that the state government “also initiate” steps to include topics like agriculture, horticulture and tourism in school curricula because those sectors were mainstays of the state’s economy. “If such an initiative is taken, the coming generation will automatically become aware of the issues facing those sectors right from school days,” he said.

Negi, the vice chairman of Rural Development and Migration Commission, said the forced migration was taking place both from the hill and plain districts. “There are some 968 uninhabited villages in the state, of which quite a few (villages) were also in some of the three plain districts,” he said, adding that of the 10 hill districts, the problem of forced migration was acute in Almora and Pauri districts.

Coast Guard chief Rajendra Singh stressed on the need for strengthening the road infrastructure and keeping urban areas clean. “It takes three-and-a-half hours in reaching Dehradun from Roorkee by road,” he said pointing to the “dismal” conditions of roads.

Later, speaking to reporters, chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat said the government might consider incorporating lessons relating to farm, horticulture and tourism in the school curricula, a suggestion made by speakers. “Similarly, beautification of Doon would soon be initiated,” he said, adding that a panel of citizens headed by the chief secretary would be constituted “very shortly”.

Earlier, inaugurating the seminar, the CM said that steps taken against corruption were some of his main achievements since assuming charge seven months ago. Finance secretary Amit Negi gave an overview of the state’s journey in the past 17 years.