'Focus on vocational skills development' - The New Indian Express

'Focus on vocational skills development'

Published: 23rd November 2013 10:25 AM

Last Updated: 23rd November 2013 10:26 AM

The Central government is keen on developing vocational-training programmes to meet the demands of large workforce entering the job market, Union human resource development minister MM Pallam Raju has said. According to estimates, about 12 million youth enter the job market every year, he added.

He was speaking at the inauguration of the national integration meet of Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas held at the University of Hyderabad here on Friday. The meet is an annual event of Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti which runs these schools across the country. The two-day programme is aimed at showcasing the talents, including cultural performances, literary expressions and art exhibitions by students from across the country.

In his address the minister said, “The Prime Minister has reiterated, time and again, about the need for scaling up vocational training courses in the country. In this regard, we have set a target of reaching 500 million people by 2022.”

Hailing the Right to Education as a successful model for the development of education, he said “The enactment of the Right to Education Act in 2009 reflects our resolve for the development of education. Today 23 crore children, studying from class 1 to 12, are benefited by this,” he added.

On mid-day meal scheme, Pallam Raju said, “Today, India is running the largest and successful mid-day meal programme in the world. Every day about 11 to 12 crore children are having their meals in their respective schools.”

A substantial amount of population in the country today is young and are below 35 years of age, he observed.  “Most of them are going to schools. We cannot ignore the poverty in the country. Poverty and illiteracy is a lethal combination which can destroy any society. We need to identify this,” the minister said.  HCU vice-chancellor Ramakrishna Ramaswamy also spoke.

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