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Success Stories


Issue No 34, 20-26 November 2021

Skill India Reaches Out to Change Lives

Working as a plumber in a multistorey building in Noida, Amroha's Momeen was doing good work. He had been working for the builder for quite some time. But suddenly the contract of the builder ended and Momeen's work also got halted. He remained unemployed for the next two-three months. It was then someone told him that he could learn plumbing under Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Skill India initiative and earn a certificate for it.

 Momeen thought it over for a few days. He rationalized that he already knew plumbing well. If he could get a certificate too, he might find a job in a company. This could end the uncertainty associated with working as a daily-wage worker. Thus, he decided to enroll in the Skill India course for plumbing which has a duration of six months.

After enrolling in the course, Momeen realized that though he knew most of the practical aspects of plumbing, he did not know the terminology of the field and some of its engineering-related aspects well enough. Doing the course helped him gain expertise in these areas too and gave him the confidence of calling himself a skilled plumber. He was happy and excited to receive the certificate.

The private institute in Noida where Momeen had enrolled himself organized a campus placement drive at the end of the course. There, a realty company from Faridabad had come to recruit a plumber. The company's executive interviewed Momeen who knew all the terminology well enough by now. He easily got selected for the vacancy and got a higher salary package than he expected.

 One big reason behind his selection was that Momeen already had experience in the field. It has been more than a year now and Momeen firmly believes that the 6-month Skill India course has changed his life forever.

 Momeen is not alone. Skill training by private players is changing people's lives too.

Skill Training by Tata Strive

A skill development initiative of Tata Trusts, Tata Strive aims to change lives of 1 million people by 2022. Right now, it is training 3 lakh people for jobs in various Tata companies. It is in the process of upscaling and soon it will be training 7 lakh aspirants in different skills. Till September 2021, 7.5 lakh people have already been trained by Tata Strive.

Sirisha Jetti of Nagole, Telangana, is one of the graduates of Tata Strive who is breaking many stereotypes in the society as a woman electrician. Sirisha's father is an auto driver. Her family landed into a deep financial crisis in 2016 and her father found himself struggling to pay even the rent of the house.

 Sirisha realized that she needs to learn a skill and find a job soon. She enrolled in an assistant electrician's course at Tata Strive. It was not an easy road. She had to travel 70 km daily from her home in Nagole to the centre. But the course did teach her the necessary theory and practical training to help her become a successful electrician today. At 19, she earns a salary of Rs 12,000 per month as an assistant electrician in Hotel Taj Krishna in Hyderabad.

Besides helping her family, Sirisha has also enrolled in a B.Tech degree. "I firmly believe that the skill development initiative of Tata Strive has improved my career prospects considerably", she says.

 Anita Ranjan, Tata Strive CEO, says, "We are working with young people, most of whom are economically and socially disadvantaged, to provide them with necessary skill sets and personality training as required, and link them to livelihoods. Besides helping them find jobs, we also help them become entrepreneurs."

Mahindra Pride School is also Changing Lives

Manikandan Palani used to sell fish by the roadside. His sales were highly unpredictable. His family had to sell their home because his income was never enough. It was then Palani enrolled himself in the Mahindra Pride School where he worked on his communication and interpersonal skills, and also got some IT training. Today, he is working as a software development trainee in Zoho.

Skill development initiatives not only change the live of one individual. It uplifts the living conditions of an entire family, and an entire generation of the skilled person.

Sai Prasad Nandala did not have it easy too. He is the son of a vegetable vendor and also had a stammer. The poverty and stammer crushed his confidence throughout his childhood. But he attended soft skills training at Mahindra Pride School, and is now working as a content reviewer at Wipro!

 All skill training programs offered by Mahindra Pride School include a compulsory module on soft skills that covers grooming, basic computer skills, and spoken English skills to make candidates employable.

 Sheetal Mehta, Senior VP of Mahindra Group, says, "Before the COVID-19 pandemic, Mahindra Pride School mostly had a 100% placement track-record every year where our candidates were picked up by reputed organizations. We offer a 90-day training course and train about 5,500 to 6,000 individuals annually. The average starting salary package of our course graduates is around Rs 11,000 per month at present. The best salary packages our students have got were offered by UD Trucks in Japan, which picked up 65 of our students for more than Rs 1 lakh per month."

 Skilled Women are Breaking Stereotypes

 Gender equality in the workforce is still a far away goal but more and more women are now entering professions that have traditionally been considered men's domains. For example, the job of a 'lineman.' Like all electrical engineering jobs and heavy-duty industries, this job is largely considered to be reserved for men. Two women in Telangana have created history by becoming the first linewomen in the state.

Babburi Sirisha did the Electrician course from the ITI. She wanted to apply for a vacancy of the 'lineman' at Telangana Southern Power Distribution Corporation Limited (TSSPDCL). But women were not eligible to apply for the post. TSSPDCL rationalized that this job requires heavy-duty and rigorous activities like climbing 18-feet electricity poles frequently. These activities were stereotypically considered more dangerous for women, the so-called weaker sex.

Sirisha challenged this archaic rule in the Delhi High Court in 2019 arguing that women did deserve a fair chance to apply for the post. After a year of legal battle, Sirisha won. She and eight other women applied for the vacancy. Sirisha and another woman Vaankudothu Bharathi cleared the exam to become the first linewomen of Telangana. They also cleared the physical exam where they were required to climb the pole in less than a minute.

Skill India drive is for everyone. Take a skill development course today and write a new future!

(Content provided by Shri Amit Tyagi, Journalist)

Views expressed are personal.