Apprentices Amendment Act

Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Skill Development & Entrepreneurship Shri Rajiv Pratap Rudy has said that it is estimated that out of 487 million workforce, 4.69% possess formal vocational education. In addition to the challenges of re-skilling, up-skilling and Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) for existing workforce, there is a need to provide skilling opportunities for approximately 104.6 million people who are expected to enter the workforce between 2015 to 2022. The National Policy for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, 2015, approved by the Government on 1st July, 2015, provides a roadmap to meet the aforesaid challenge by skilling at scale and speed with standards across the Country. The Policy also recognizes that skill development as a shared responsibility of the Government as well as the Industry along with individuals. Consequently, the Policy provides for funding of skill initiatives through Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) funding, apprenticeship in industries, skill loans including Government support.

In a written reply in the Rajya Sabha today Shri Rudy said, in addition to the above, as an effort to align the skill development initiatives with the incremental human resource requirement, Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) has been launched by Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship. The scheme has an outlay of Rs. 1,500 crore, with a target to cover 24 lakh persons within next one year, under skill training (including 10 lakh under Recognition of Prior Learning).The rates of stipends paid to the trades apprentices have been linked to the minimum wage of semi-skilled worker of the respective State.

The Minister said, the Government has taken various steps to enhance apprenticeship seats. The Apprentices Act, 1961 has been amended on 22.12.2014 to provide necessary flexibility with safeguards, and facilitate wider participation of youth and the industries. Further, a new Scheme, 'Apprentice Protsahan Yojana' has also been started to encourage participation of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in apprenticeship training.