Providing new skills to India’s increasing employable population to make them eligible for emerging sectors was identified by the Economic Survey as the biggest challenge before the government.
If India fails to provide new skills to those between 15 and 64 years, whose percentage has increased to 68.4 per cent in 2006 from 62.9 per cent in 2001, unemployment would be a major reason for unrest, it has warned.
To achieve the target of providing skills to one crore people every year, Finance Minister P Chidambaram is likely to announce a Rs 300 crore Skill Development Mission in his budget speech on Friday.
In the 11th plan, Rs 22,800 crore would be allocated for the mission to start 50,000 skill development centres. The mission will have four sub-groups — training youth for industry, community training skills, for agriculture sector and tailor-made skill upgradation for specific industries like IT, Pharma and Auto sector.
The mission will cover 400 industrial training institutes, 20,000 schools and 5,000 skill development centres. It would develop skills of school students, those already in jobs and unemployed people, says the mission document.
The survey says Indians in the employable age group in coming years would have less dependants, thereby bringing in more prosperity. Lesser dependants because the average family size will reduce with lesser children but life expectancy would remain at the present 64 years.
This situation — demographic dividend — would help in growth of Indian economy provided right skills are provided to the youth.
The survey says the 11th plan document rightly points out that if we get our skill development act together we would be harnessing a demographic dividend.
The government believes that providing proper skills would help Indian youth fill the huge manpower gap in the global market.