In a bid to strengthen the district skill administration and District Skill Committees (DSCs), the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) announced the national rollout of Mahatma Gandhi National Fellowship (MGNF) Programme under World Bank loan assisted programme SANKALP (Skills Acquisition and Knowledge Awareness for Livelihood Promotion) to further strengthen the district skill administration and the District Skill Committees (DSCs). The two-year academic programme comes with an in-built component of on-ground practical experience with the district administration. The fellows under MGNF will acquire academic expertise and technical competency in understanding the overall skill ecosystem along with being attached to DSCs and help them manage the skill development planning at district level through the mechanism of formulating District Skill Development Plans (DSDPs).
With the successful launch of MGNF in the first pilot (MGNF) which had 69 fellows working across 69 districts, the Ministry is now expanding MGNF to all remaining districts in the country. For retaining the standard of academic excellence and reputation in MGNF, the Ministry is seeking academic partnership with only the IIMs and have roped in nine IIMs namely – IIM Bangalore, IIM Ahmedabad, IIM Lucknow, IIM Kozhikode, IIM Visakhapatnam, IIM-Udaipur, IIM Nagpur, IIM Ranchi and IIM-Jammu for the national roll out of MGNF. Additionally, MSDE has partnered with Kerala Institute of Local Administration (KILA) to conduct capacity building programmes for District officials from the states of Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Puducherry and Lakshadweep.
KILA is entrusted with designing and delivering the training program on different thematic areas which are aimed at enhancing and building the capacities of the district officials, for effective planning of skill development programs. KILA will organise the training and associated logistics for the training programs and also develop or customise content based on local requirements and training need assessment in the respective state/s. To further bolster the trainer ecosystem, the SANKALP programme will also support in Training of Trainer (ToT) system in Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode that a collaborative approach between industry and the technical and vocational education and training (TVET) ecosystem.
Towards this, a ‘Cluster Approach’ is adopted to meet the objectives and GIZ-developed automotive cluster in Aurangabad has been selected for the pilot. A strategic partnership has been formed between key stakeholders of MSDE, Automotive Skill Development Council (ASDC), Indo-German Programme for Vocational Education and Training (GIZ-IGVET) and Maharashtra State Skill Development Mission to implement the pilot project. The emphasis is on preparation of TVET trainers with focus on domain knowledge, pedagogical skills and industrial experience.
Sharing his views on these initiatives, Dr Mahendra Nath Pandey, Union Minister of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, said, “The last 6 years of Skill India have extensively focused on capacity building and creating infrastructure support for vocational training across the country. Our partnerships going forward will be more focused on strengthening the overall quality of skill training. With the recent launch of Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana 3.0 and today’s academic partnerships with IIMs, IITs, GIZ-IGVET, KILA under our SANKALP scheme, together we will empower the districts ensuring demand-driven skilling. I am confident that these programs will boost our efforts to bring in a transformational change and impact to our Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s vision of building an ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat.”
On the launch of various programs under SANKALP, Praveen Kumar, Secretary, Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship said, “All the programs launched today are aligned with our focus of strengthening quality and availability of resources at ground level to support the District Skills Committees in their skill development and training outreach. The various programs in association with leading academic, technical and state departments such as IIMs and IITs will further help in improving the training standards, fortifying capabilities of trainers and also boost more women participation across various skilling programs under PMKVY 3.0.”
In the year 2018, MSDE has instituted the Awards for Excellence in District Skill Development Planning (DSDP Awards) under SANKALP. Breaking the silos that exist in skill development initiatives, MSDE continues to recognise the efforts and determination of districts through these Awards for Excellence with an aim to empower district officials through a bottom-up approach allowing them to play a crucial role in shaping policies in the future. The second edition of DSDP awards is also underway and the number of districts participating this year has more than doubled from last time with over 460 DSDPs received from across the country. This year, both IIT Delhi and IIT Kharagpur are being onboarded as evaluation partners for the awards. The event also witnessed the launch of “Skill training on Gender Sensitisation and Prevention of Sexual Harassment (POSH) at the workplace” in partnership with the Management and Entrepreneurship and Professional Skill Council (MEPSC) as the Implementation Agency for the project. The six-month project will be implemented in 15 districts across 3 states of Rajasthan, Haryana and Punjab to train 1800 trainees and 240 training professionals.