Under a new scheme devised by the government, Indian workers, all set to take off to work abroad, would now get a chance to upgrade their crafts and skills before leaving the country.
The Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs (MOIA) has finalised a training a module in which workers like carpenters and masons would attend a week-long course to sharpen their expertise. Besides, they would also be exposed to new technology in their fields. The ministry expects that the programme will help workers command higher wages and a sense of respect among their new employers. The expenses for the course will be borne by the government.
“The workers would also be familiarised with the laws and customs of the countries they are headed to. This way, it would be easier for them to assimilate in a completely new society,” MOIA secretary Nirmal Singh said.
The Ministry has called a meeting of the labour and industry secretaries of nine states, which sees the highest outflow of workers, on September 18. “The states had been told about the scheme in August. On the 18th of this month, we would discuss and decide on the logistics. The expenses would be jointly shared by the Ministry and the State governments,” Singh said. The expected cost per programme is about Rs 20,000.
Vayalar Ravi, minister from the Overseas Indian Affairs department will chair the meeting and inaugurate the course by end-October.
The nine states to be covered by the scheme are Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.
Singh said recruitment agencies that are registered with the Ministry have also been informed about the scheme. “They have been asked to inform workers about the scheme and persuade them to attend the course,” Singh said, adding that at the end of the course the participants would be awarded a certificate.