To provide a boost to employment opportunities among fresh graduates in India, and to equip them with practical knowledge and skills, the Union Human Resource Development Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ and Minister of State for Housing and Urban Affairs, Hardeep. S. Puri, jointly launched The Urban Learning Internship Programme (TULIP).
This first of its kind initiative, will provide internship opportunities to fresh graduates across the country with urban local bodies or ULBs and smart cities.
Amit Khare, secretary, HRD; Durga Shanker Mishra, secretary, MoHUA; Anil Sahasrabuddhe, chairman, All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) and senior officers of both ministries and AICTE were also present.
Speaking on the occasion, Pokhriyal said that there is no shortage of brilliant talent in the country looking at how the CEOs of prominent companies of the world, such as Google, Microsoft and Adobe, among others are all of Indian origin. He further highlighted that the potential of students is reflected in programmes, such as Smart India Hackathon, wherein they try to bring out solutions to the problems faced by industries, PSUs, Government and NGOs.
He added that this initiative is aligned with the vision of PM Modi to harness the potential of the youth in nation building. The Minister said that the TULIP programme will help lay the foundation of a new India, providing practical experience and innovative thinking.
Through about 4000 ULBs and smart cities, the TULIP programme will provide internship opportunities to youth pan India.
According to the Minister of State for Housing and Urban Affairs, approx. 25,000 fresh graduates are expected to benefit from the internship in the first year itself. Not only will this help interns get hands-on experience in the activities of ULBs, but also help create a pool of resources from which the industry can draw talent in the time of need, in diverse fields, including urban planning, transport engineering, environment, municipal finance and so on.
This will not only catalyse creation of prospective city managers, but also talented private/ non-government sector professionals. In addition, the programme will contribute to the Government’s endeavours to boost community partnership and government-academia-industry-civil society linkages.
The finance minister announced the programme as part of the Budget 2020-21, under the theme ‘Aspirational India’, with the objective providing “internship opportunities to fresh engineers for a period of up to one year.”
Such a programme will help reap the benefits of India’s demographic dividend as it is poised to have the largest working-age population in the world in the coming years. India has a substantial pool of technical graduates for whom exposure to real-world project implementation and planning is essential for professional development. General education may not reflect the depth of productive knowledge present in society. Instead of approaching education as ‘doing by learning,’ our society needs to reimagine education as ‘learning by doing.’
This launch is also an important stepping stone for fulfilling the MHRD and AICTE’s goal of 1 crore successful internships by the year 2025. The digital platform powering TULIP enables discovery, engagement, aggregation, amplification and transparency. The platform is customisable and provides immense flexibility to both ULBs/ smart cities and interns, to enable convenient access. Security features have been thoroughly tested and the platform has been made scalable, federated and transparent by design.
In accordance, an MoU has also been signed between MoHUA and AICTE, laying down the roles and responsibilities of both parties over a period of five years. Technical support for the platform shall be managed by AICTE and the non-technical aspects shall be looked after by MoHUA. A Steering Committee under the chairmanship of Secretary, HUA, including the Chairman of AICTE along with other officials from MoHUA and AICTE has been constituted to review the progress of the programme on a periodical basis.
How the programme will be carried out:
For the interns, specific guidelines detailing the objective, eligibility conditions, duration and terms of engagement of the programme have been spelled out. The guidelines provide for illustrative roles for interns which can be further refined at the level of ULBs and smart cities. A handbook for ease of understanding has been created for the same. The HUA Ministry will be in charge of issuing out the stipends and perks under the programme.
MoHUA will reach out to state governments to help boost internships in their cities along with undertaking capacity building initiatives in partnership with state governments to enable participation of ULBs and smart cities under TULIP. States and UTs can implement TULIP in accordance with the varying needs and opportunities available at the urban level.
State governments and UTs are encouraged to explore scaling up the programme at a parastatal level and with other organisations related to urban development in their respective jurisdictions. The open platform of TULIP makes such additions possible.
Any graduate who has completed B. Tech, B. Arch, B. Plan and BSc among others, can apply within 18 months from date of their graduation.