Assam to turn its employment exchange offices into skill centres


Almost 1.5 lakh youths will be provided skill-development training, to make them employment ready by March, 2018.

Taking skill-development efforts a step further, the Assam Government just said that all the employment exchanges in the state will be converted into district skill-development centres. They will serve as facilitation centres for career counselling.

State skill, employment and entrepreneurship minister, Chandra Mohan Patowary announced the same at a day-long workshop —Dakhya Axom: Unnata Axom . An Initiative for better human resource planning to achieve the goal of Skill India, it was organised by the Assam Skill Development Mission at the Assam Administrative Staff College in Khanapara.

With 20 lakh unemployed youth in the state, the number of employment exchanges in Assam stands at 52. The employment exchanges primarily register job-seekers and also collect employment-related market information.

Patowary is of the view that skill development cannot be done in isolation – it should go hand-in-hand with the industry department in the journey of skilling the youth of the state. He also said that employment officers will now interact with students and understand their requirements, apart from registering their names in the employment exchanges.

In February, Patowary had revealed in the Assembly that there are 15,23,531 registered educated, unemployed youths in Assam, of which 1.5 lakh will be provided skill-development training, to make them employable by March, 2018.

With the growing number of unemployed youth, the BJP-led government in the state is even more inclined to push for providing skill training to them. Besides, opening new skill-development centres will be a time-consuming and costly affair. On the other hand, this way, the existing employment exchange infrastructure would be better utilised. They will complement the existing 35 government and 96 private skill-development centres in the state.

Referring to China’s global dominance, Patowary shared that if India could convert its population into a skilled workforce, it could become the skill hub of the world as envisioned by the Prime Minister.

Chief secretary, V.K. Pipersenia added that each industrial sector must have its own skill-development centre to improve learning as well as production outcome, as he also called upon industry representatives to partner with ASDM to achieve these objectives.

Additional chief secretaries, Ravi Capoor (industries and commerce) and K.V. Eapen (skill, employment and entrepreneurship), highlighted the emerging areas the state needs to focus on— such as hospitality, wellness and food processing, where skilled manpower is required— and create a pool of skilled workforce.

Senior bureaucrats, K.K. Dwivedi, Ashutosh Agnihotri and ASDM director, A.P. Tiwari also spoke at the event and stressed the need to make youngsters skilled and employable.

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