Government ministries have not been able to meet the standards for skills development, the Sharda Prasad committee said, highlighting drawbacks in the scheme to train youth for jobs and entrepreneurship.
The government-appointed panel led by Prasad, a former director general of employment and training, recommended that nine ministries that don’t have domain expertise or training infrastructure of their own should discontinue their programme to meet the parameters.
Their funds and staff should be transferred to the skill development ministry, it said.
When the scheme was launched in July 2015, the mandate was that all 17 ministries in the Union government must achieve the national vocational education and training (VET) standards. But the panel found the ministries of rural development, urban housing and poverty alleviation, communication and IT, tribal affairs, women and child development, development of northeastern region, home, minority affairs, and social justice and empowerment were lagging behind.
But the ministries of agriculture, MSME, HRD, textile, commerce and industry, tourism, chemicals and fertilizers, and food processing industries could continue on the condition that they must align their curricula with the national standards to meet specific skills needs in their sectors.
“Their trainees should also be brought under the purview of national assessment and certification system to ensure best quality of training and uniform certificate,” said the panel’s report. The panel questioned why ministries without domain expertise or any specialised vocational training institutions should carry out skills development programmes.
It explained with an example that the tribal affairs ministry won’t provide petroleum products to scheduled tribes people since fuel is the domain of the oil ministry. So, the tribal affairs ministry can do away with skills development in this area.