The State has a vast human resource of educated youth. It is the endeavor of the Government to harness this immense potential by creating a pool of adequately trained skilled manpower relevant to the need of the industry and growing service sector of the country. Due emphasis is being laid on creation of skill imparting and training institutes both in the public and private sector throughout the State as skill development can enhance the employability of the unemployed youth to a large extent.
For this, the State Government has launched a Rs 500 crore Skill Development Allowance Scheme for the educated unemployed youth of the State. Skill Development Allowance of Rs. 1,000 per month is being provided to the youth during the course they undertake such training to enhance their employability. Youth with disabilities are being provided Rs 1,500 per month as Skill Development Allowance. Till date, as many as 70,000 youth of the State have been benefited from this scheme. To bring maximum youth under the ambit of this scheme, the scheme has been significantly liberalized. Now the 8th pass Himachali youths, who are above 16 years and below 36 years are eligible to avail benefit under this scheme. The condition of registration in the employment exchange for at least two years has been waived off. Further, the minimum educational requirement has also been waived off for training in masonry, carpentry, blacksmith, plumbing, etc. The Government has now decided to bring BSc Nursing course under the fold of Skill Development Allowance. This would provide relief to thousand of girls studying BSc Nursing in several Government and Private Nursing Institutions in the State.
Most of the skill development courses can be completed in three months to two years. This allowance is being given to unemployed youth whose family income is less than Rs 2 lakh per annum. The unemployed youth are allowed to utilize this allowance for upgrading their skill in any sector where ever they propose to get employment. After completion of skill training, if an unemployed youth intends to take up self employment then he could apply for loan to a bank or to the Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribe, and Other Backward Classes Corporations. The State Government is providing an interest subvention of 4 per cent up to project cost of Rs 1.50 lakh for next five years.
Since over 90 per cent of our population lives in rural areas, thus stress is being laid on upgrading skills of rural youth. As many as 8,000 Rural Youth belonging to BPL category would be covered under the National Rural Livelihood Mission and 5,000 youth from the urban area would be covered under the National Urban Livelihood Mission during the current financial year.
The Government is ensuring that at least 70 per cent employment in all the upcoming industrial, power and tourism units is provided to Himachalis. The present Government is committed to accelerate the pace of industrial development in the State, but also provide more employment opportunities to the youth of the State. As a special incentive to the entrepreneurs, any new industry, which employs more than 300 Himachalis would be charged only 1 per cent electricity duty for five years.
To plan, co-ordinate and implement most of the Skill Development Schemes of the State, the Government has made a budgetary provision to establish Himachal Pradesh State Skill Development Corporation in the State. The Government would also encourage public-private interface for skill upgradation of the youth on a large scale. The State Government also proposes to access funding through Asian Development Bank to facilitate providing quality and certified skills to unemployed youth to ensure their gainful employment. The Project would be implemented for a period of five years to upgrade skill of one lakh unemployed youth of the State.
With the aim of promoting skills and improving employability of students, vocational education in trades like automobiles, retail, security, healthcare, tourism and agriculture from 9th to 12th Class have been started from the last financial year. This vocational education would be extended in another 100 Government Senior Secondary Schools during the current financial year. The State Government is also contemplating to invite reputed organizations to open a Skill University in the State.
The objective of the State Government is consolidation and qualitative improvement of education, capitalization on natural advantages in tourism, socio-economic upliftment of weaker section of the society by providing skilled man power as per the demand of the industry to meet the future challenges set up by the rapidly changing economy.