Realising that the Congress government’s populist Rs 100 crore ‘Skill Development Scheme’ has failed to benefit the educated, jobless youths as envisaged, the Himachal Pradesh government has announced revamping the scheme to make it broad-based by lowering the cut- off age and relaxing educational qualifications.
The age for the beneficiaries has now been lowered to 18 from 25. In fact, all educated unemployed youths between age group of 18 to 35 years, seeking to upgrade their skills will be eligible for benefits under the scheme. The minimum qualification too has been reduced to 10th pass from 12th pass.
”The registration process too has been simplified. The applicant will now be required to be registered with any employment exchange on the date of application as against the earlier two years,” the Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh told Sunday Express here.
In another change, the applicant can now give an affidavit saying he or she is unemployed instead of getting a magistrate’s certificate for the same. These amendments, the chief minister said, would enable more youngsters to develop and upgrade their skills in a sector of their choice.
Under the scheme, the amount will be transferred directly to the bank accounts of the eligible youths, who are either studying at different institutions including ITIs or getting skill upgradation trainings at recognized centers. The promoters of the centres will be required to issue a certificate to inform that the applicant was registered for training. However, there is no relaxation in the family income limit of Rs 2 lakhs, for eligibility.