BHUBANESWAR: The tall claims of State Government to provide employment to lakhs of youths appear to have fallen flat with over 18 lakh students in Odisha still looking for jobs. Only one per cent of these technically educated students who had registered themselves in employment exchanges seeking jobs have been able to get placement so far. Odisha has 80 employment exchanges, including 30 district employment exchanges, 33 employment sub-offices, 7 rural employment bureaus, 5 special employment exchanges, 4 university employment information and guidance bureau and 1 State Employment Exchange.
Statistics from Skill Development and Technical Education (SDTE) Department reveal that in 8 years between 2010 and 2017, as many as 18,81,932 students enrolled with these exchanges seeking jobs. Nearly 12,98,436 boys and 5,83496 girls had sought jobs in the technical education sector through the employment exchanges. However, only 19,250 candidates or 1.02 per cent of the number of registered aspirants found placements.
What raises concern is the declining rate of placement with each passing year. Government statistics available with this paper reveal that of 2,76,249 aspirants registered in the exchanges in 2010, only 4,481 got employment. The placement ratio against number of enrolled students was 3,775 against 3,05,032 students in 2011; 3,850 against 2,04,686 aspirants in 2012; 2,646 against 2,78,480 job seekers in 2013; 1,144 against 2,27,768 candidates in 2014; 1,825 against 2,02,301 candidates in 2015; 770 against 1,65,252 aspirants in 2016 and only 759 placements against 2,22,164 registered in 2017.
Currently, close to 200 technical education institutes, including four government engineering colleges, 61 private engineering institutes, 72 diploma and private engineering schools and a number of government and private ITIs and polytechnics function in the State and thousands of students pass from these institutes every year.
Though the State Government signed a number of MoU with various firms and organises business summits to create more employment opportunities for technically educated students, failure in grounding of big ticket projects like ArcellorMittal, Maharashtra Seamless, Sterlite Iron and Steel and Posco, among others has created major setbacks.
However, officials in SDTE Department said the State Government has recently directed industrial houses to offer job training to students at their establishments.According to sources, as many as 1,168 big, medium and small industries in the State are covered under the Apprentices Act of 1961, however, less than 50 of these industries are facilitating them with such training.