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15th July, 2020 marked the 5-year anniversary of the ‘Skill India Mission’. PM Narendra Modi, while speaking on the occasion of ‘World Youth Skills Day’ emphasized the importance of ‘Skill, Reskill & Upskill’ to acquire the required skills to be employment ready in the current situation.

Our country has one of the lowest percentage of skilled workforce; a meagre 4% as compared to 42% in the US, 76% in Germany, 80% in Japan and a whopping 96% in South Korea.  So, in 2015, the Government decided to take the resources to the common man’s doorsteps.

The Skill India Mission is spearheaded by the National Skill Development Agency (NSDA), National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC), National Skill Development Fund (NSDF), various Sector Skill Councils (SSCs) as well as hundreds of training partners registered with NSDC.

The objective of the Skill India Mission is to provide aspiring youths with the right resources and training to enhance their skills and knowledge so that they are enabled to participate in equal employment opportunities. It aims at empowering the youth of our country with self-esteem and employability.

Since its inception in 2015, the Skill India Mission has trained and equipped around 33 lakh candidates under various training programmes. It carries out its operations through the following programmes:

  • Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana
  • Skills Acquisition and Knowledge Awareness for Livelihood Promotion (SANKALP)
  • Standard Training Assessment and Reward Scheme (STAR)
  • Polytechnic Schemes
  • Vocationalization of Education

Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY)

Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) is a well-designed scheme of the Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship (MSDE) that aims at enabling a huge number of eligible candidates to take up industry-relevant skills training to help them achieve a better chance at employment. Individuals who have previous academic experience or expertise will now be tested and accredited under Previous Learning Recognition (PLR). Education and testing fees are fully paid by the Government under this Scheme.

Key Components of the Scheme are: 

Short Term Training: This is imparted via PMKVY Training Centres (TCs) to eligible Indian citizens who have discontinued formal education or are unemployed.

Recognition of Prior Learning: Here, individuals with some form of expertise or skill are tested and accredited under the Scheme for Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) and then trained to adapt them to the current job requirements.

Special Projects: This scheme offers the training provided by government bodies, corporations / industry bodies in specific areas and government premises. This scheme promotes some training in specific job roles not specified by the Qualification Packs (QPs) or National Occupational Standards (NOSs).

Kaushal and Rozgar Mela: These are special activities that are carried out every six months by Training Partners to promote interest from potential and qualified PMKVY schemes candidates. In order to maximize mobilization these are typically achieved in the midst of press/media attention. The Training Partners do need to regularly engage in National Career Service Melas and on-ground exercises.

SANKALP (Skills Acquisition and Knowledge Awareness for Livelihood Promotion)

SANKALP was formed in January 2018 with the goal of improving various skills training frameworks and the access to quality and market-relevant training for young people across the country.

SANKALP seeks to resolve emerging issues such as achieving integration, instilling consistency in skill growth programs and making them meaningful and open to the sector while promoting private involvement in short-term training.


UDAAN is a Special Industry Initiative specifically designed for Jammu & Kashmir. This scheme works as a bridge between the Indian Corporate sector and the Ministry of Home Affairs to offer skill training and employability programmes to the unemployed youth of J&K. Graduates, Under-graduates and Diploma holders are eligible to participate in this scheme.

This scheme works with the primary objective of offering the best access of Corporate India to the unemployed & to introduce the rich talent pool present in the State of J & K to Corporate India.

Polytechnic Schemes

Under this scheme, the Government offers funds to States & UTs to set up Polytechnic colleges. They can get a financial assistance of up to Rs.12.30 crores for setting up new Government Polytechnics.

Vocationalization of Education

To fill the divide between Education and Industry, the NSDC has built an innovative paradigm for bringing skill-based training into the Universities' curriculum process. They are based on industry-specific National Occupational Requirements developed by sector skill councils. The job positions available on the National Skills Qualification System are structured to be inclusive in nature – from Level 5 to Level 7. 21 Universities, UGC and AICTE with more than 1200 colleges and 400 community colleges across the country have been brought under the purview of this scheme.

Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Kendras (PMKKs):

The Skill India Mission, under the aegis of the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE), has initiated the establishment of state-of-the-art, assessable and aspiring model training centres in every district of India, ensuring coverage for all parliamentary constituencies (PCs). These model training centres are known as "Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Kendra" (PMKK).

These training centres are set up under a public-private partnership model. These centres are offered a subsidized loan of up to Rs.70 lakhs per PMKK. These funds can be used to set up labs, equipment and other training utilities.

These training centres will be given a mandate for a minimum of 3 years under the PMKVY Scheme, until it is in effect.

As per latest records, the scheme has enabled the establishment of 812 PMKKs in 707 districts and 540 PCs. 710 PMKK’s centres, out of the 812 allocated, are established across 36 States /Union territories.

What are the courses available under the Skill India Mission?

There are 5 main categories of courses under the Skill India mission:

Management and Development Programmes: Financial Statement Analysis, Modern Office Practice, Marketing for Managers, etc.

Train the Trainer: Accreditation program for EM Trainers, Technology Infusion, etc.

Entrepreneurship Development Programmes: Women EDP, Women Empowerment, CRR Scheme, etc.

Skill Development Programmes: Dairy based ESDP, Carpentry, Electroplating, Fashion Designing, etc.

Other skills: Promotion of Micro-Enterprises, Cluster Development, Lending strategies for MSMEs, etc.

How can candidates apply for the various training programmes under the Skill India Mission?

Aspiring candidates can register for a desired skill training or learning and employment opportunities through the online portal for Skill India.

  • Candidates should first register with their personal details, contact and communication details
  • They will then be required to upload identification documents and education details
  • They can then add their course preferences across sectors and job roles
  • A confirmation mail / message is sent to the candidate on their registered mobile number / email

FAQs on Skill India Mission

1. What is the PMKVY scheme?

Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) is a much anticipated program of the Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship (MSDE). The goal of this scheme is to allow a large number of Indian youth to take up industry-relevant skills training to help them achieve a better chance at getting employed for a better life. Individuals who have prior professional experience or expertise will now be tested and accredited under Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL).

2. What are the key components of the PMKVY scheme?

The PMKVY Scheme has the following integral programmes for youth:

  • Short Term Training
  • Special Projects
  • Recognition of Prior Learning
  • Kaushal & Rozgar Mela
  • Placement Assistance
  • Continuous Monitoring
  • Standard Branding & Communication

3. Who is eligible for assessments under PMKVY 2016-2020?

Those applicants who have successfully attended and completed the PMKVY preparation at the PMKVY training center, with an attendance record of at least 70% will be entitled to appear for an assessment.

4. Who are eligible to enrol under the Short Term Training component of PMKVY?

This scheme is available for Indian youth who are:

  • Unemployed or school/college dropouts
  • Possess an Aadhaar card
  • Hold a bank account
  • Hold any other verifiable alternate ID such as PAN or Voter ID
  • Satisfy all other criteria as defined by the SSCs for the respective job roles

End Note

The Skill India Mission aims at enabling our country’s youth to become employable with high skills and training. Trained candidates can avail and use these courses under Skill India mission as a tool to improve their socioeconomic standing in the society. Additionally, they can also develop themselves as an entrepreneur and start up their own company.

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