• There is no doubt thot skill and knowledge arc the driving force of socio-economic development for any nation. If skilled youth are available in the country, there will be no shortage of human labour resources for industries, and they will boost productivity.
• Presently, in our country, the working people in the age group of 15 to 59 years are more than the dependent population. The average of the working population is steadily increasing. There is no doubt that with demographic dividend favouring India and greater emphasis on skill development and entrepreneurship, we will become the largest resource base of skilled workers in various fields in the entire world in the next two to three decades. There will be an unprecedented increase in world class demand for skilled workers in our country.
Steps taken by the government so far:
• The Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship has also launched an Aatma Nirbhar Skilled Employee-Employer Mapping (ASEEM) portal under the ‘Self-reliant India Campaign’ (Aatma Nirbhar Bharat Abhiyan). This portal provides real-time data of skilled workforce based on demand and supply.
• Digital skills will certainly play an important role in the post-COVID-19 era. In such a situation, the Directorate General of Training, Ministry of Skill Development, and Entrepreneurship started long-term training related to the latest technology.
• The Directorate General of Training has launched a free digital learning platform (Skills Build Reignite) in June 2020 through a MoU with IBM. In the time of Artificial Intelligence and Cloud Computing, the National Skill Development Institute is also offering all-round training of digital skills. In the field of entrepreneurship and skills, Indian genre like yoga has also been added. So far, more than 98 thousand people have been trained to get employment as yoga instructors.
Pradhan Mantri Yuva Udyamita Vikas Abhiyan:
• The Pradhan Mantri Yuva Udyamita Vikas Abhiyan (PMYUA) is under implementation by the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship to promote young entrepreneurs. Through this, training, mentoring and other support for setting up enterprises is provided to young entrepreneurs.
• It is being implemented on a pilot basis in select districts of 10 states and two union territories. This campaign was launched keeping in mind the trainees and alumni of ITIs, Polytechnic Colleges, Prime Minister Skill Development Centres and Public Educational Institutions to utilise their technical training in setting up the enterprise.
National Entrepreneurship Award:
• The National Entrepreneurship Award (NEA) has also been instituted in 2016 to promote entrepreneurship. The award aims to encourage the spirit of entrepreneurship and inspire the youth.
• The award is given to honour young first-generation entrepreneurs and ecosystem builders who create a constructive environment for entrepreneurship and women entrepreneurs.
Entrepreneurship in Agriculture sector:
• Agriculture, horticulture and animal husbandry, have immense potentials of entrepreneurship and start-ups. Recently, under the Prime Minister’s leadership, the government has passed three laws related to agricultural reforms in Parliament. With these agrarian reforms, farmers have access to many facilities and the freedom to sell their products to anyone, anywhere.
• They have also paved the way for setting up new start-ups and enterprises in the field of agriculture. Freedom to sell agri-produce anywhere besides the mandis, e-platforms for agricultural marketing will provide opportunities to young entrepreneurs to thrive in agriculture sector. The warehousing, cold storage, and processing units are set to expand in the private sector due to abolishing the storage limit of produce like cereals, potatoes, and onions through the Essential Commodities Amendment Act. It will open up new dimensions of entrepreneurship-development in this field.
Set up agricultural infrastructure fund:
• Under ‘Aatma Nirbhar Bharat Abhiyan’ the Prime Minister has made the provision of an agricultural infrastructure fund with a corpus of Rs. 1 lakh crore, which aims to transform the condition and direction of this held. Infrastructure facilities such as warehouses, cold storages, and food processing units will be set up in rural areas with this fund.
• Till now, private investment in agriculture is either very low or not balanced. Agricultural enterprises of private investors are located in urban areas instead of villages due to which farmers and rural youth are deprived of their full benefits. The agricultural infrastructure fund will certainly put an end to this imbalance. It has created a huge opportunity for entrepreneurship development in the agriculture sector. In the coming years, it will produce satisfying results.
Start-up Village Entrepreneurship Programme:
• Start-up Village Entrepreneurship Programme (SVEP) was launched in 2016 by the Ministry of Rural Development under the Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana-National Rural Livelihood Mission (DAYNRLM).
• It can be called an effective effort to empower women entrepreneurs in the villages and develop entrepreneurship spirit. Eliminating poverty from villages is the goal of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. In this direction, the scheme
has yielded significant results.
• Under this program, 75 percent of the enterprises are owned and managed by women. The study has also revealed that about 57 percent of entrepreneurs’ total family income is obtained through SVEP enterprises.
• Entrepreneurship, skill and start-up are at the core of the resolve of ‘self-reliance’ under the ‘AatmaNirbhar Bharat Abhiyan’. It is true, this is not a time to seek government job, but to provide others employment by setting up one’s own enterprise. The government has opened the door to help entrepreneurship in every field.
• In such a situation, I appeal to the younger generation of the country, especially the youth of rural areas, that you have an unlimited source of energy. The future of the nation is in your hands. The greatest responsibility of the country’s prosperity, welfare, and dignity rests with you.
• All that is needed is a strong will, commitment, and determination. I call upon all of you to pledge yourself to step forward with full zeal, become active participants in the government’s skill development and training programmes, and take advantage of the government’s facilities to setup a start-up of your interest.
• Become self-reliant as a skilled entrepreneur, provide employment to others and contribute more and more to open avenues of opportunities for the nation’s prosperity with your skills and entrepreneurship.