Lok Issues

#MyVote2019 – ‘New Job Schemes Do Help’

I am still a student pursuing M.Sc. in Environment Sciences (EVS). In a few years from now, I would start my career in research at a government institution and I am preparing for UGC NET at the same time. EVS is all about exploration, investigation and development of natural, human, social and cultural dimensions of environments. Owing to the interdisciplinary subject that I have taken up, I keep myself updated on current affairs.

I have a good understanding of the employment situation of the country. If we go by the recently published (National Sample Survey Office) report for 2017-18, the rate of unemployment has increased to 6.10 percent in 2018 from 3.52 percent in 2017, which is the highest in 45 years. In fact, a report published around nine months before demonetisation had mentioned how unemployment rate had actually gone down in urban areas but risen in rural areas.

My hope is that the nine percent increase in budget allocation to Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA), which adds up to Rs 60,000 crore, will help bail out people in rural areas and keep in check rural migration to bigger towns and cities.

However, I feel that in the urban areas, especially the metros, more and more MNCs are setting up shop because of the ease of doing business and the perceived growth in the economy. A person who has the drive, passion, resourcefulness will sooner or later find himself/herself a job, at least in metro cities.

There are a few government schemes that were put in place by the current government which can help alleviate unemployment for the rural masses. The Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Grameen Kaushalya Yojana (DDU-GKY) is a part of the National Rural Livelihood Mission (NRLM) and caters to the career aspirations of rural youth aged 15-35 benefitting around 180 million youngsters.

As per the government website, DDU-GKY is present in 21 States and UTs, across 568 districts, impacting youth from over 6,215 blocks. It currently has over 690 projects being implemented by over 300 partners, in more than 330 trades from 82 industry sectors. So far over 2.7 lakh candidates have been trained and over 1.34 lakh candidates have been placed in jobs in the course of the last financial year. DDU-GKY has so far committed an investment of more than Rs 5,600 crore.

Another scheme, the Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) under the Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship (MSDE), enables a large number of Indian youth to take up industry-relevant skill training that will help them in securing a better livelihood. As per the data available it is looking forward to benefit around 10 million youth.

Besides this, there is a Financial Assistance for Skill Training of Persons with Disabilities between the ages of 15 and 59 years. The scheme aims at providing financial assistance for skill training for persons with over 40 percent disabilities. And there is a 30 percent reservation for women candidates. The disabilities covered are blindness, low vision, leprosy (cured), hearing impairment, locomotor disability, mental retardation, autism, cerebral palsy etc.

The website also says that the government provides for the training cost, transport allowance as well as stipend to the trainees. It is important to note that the government website mentions that the applicant should not have undergone any other skill training course sponsored by government of India two years prior to the application.

A very good scheme to help youngsters get attuned to industry trends before joining the workforce is the Apprenticeship scheme. It trains youngsters by using the training facilities already available in the establishments and no extra cost is accrued.

I make sure I exercise my voting rights properly in every elections. I voted for BJP in the last elections. This time too, I would like to see Narendra Modi continue as the Prime Minister. I like his decisiveness and his leadership skills.

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