New Delhi: As a part of its envisaged dream to train 150 million young Indians by the year 2022, the National Skill Development Corporation has set an ambitious goal to establish training and certification centres in juvenile homes across the country. The government of India’s agency has already started the first of its kind training centre at the Delhi Juvenile Home in Mukherjee Nagar.
The skilling centre in Delhi comes at a time when the capital city is fighting tooth and nail to contain adolescence delinquency. Delhi has recently seen 16 percent rise in crime committed by minors says a Times of India report.
Sobins Kuriakose, an official in the NSDC told Firstpost, "The skilling centre set up in the Delhi Juvenile Home is a kind of pilot project. We hope that the experience that we acquire from this skill centre can be useful in furthering the project to other juvenile homes across India."
The newly opened vocational centre that provides training in bakery and mobile phone repairing in Delhi Juvenile Home is a special project under Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana. Recently the NSDC transformed the guidelines of PMKVY to incorporate more inclusiveness to accommodate such projects.
“While implementing the PMKVY to make India the skill capital of the world, as dreamt by the prime minister of India, it was realised that this vision could be a vehicle of social change and not just of economic growth," says Manish Kumar, managing director, of NSDC.
He further said, “There was a demand to skill the youth in Jammu and Kashmir and for that special focus was needed on our part. In the same lines, we got requests to set up training and certification centres in jails and juvenile homes across the country.”
Kumar said that the new guidelines are nothing but a set of new realisations that were garnered in the path to attain the goal of making India the skill capital.
Delhi Juvenile Home was one among the reformation centres those laid proposals for a training centre in its premises, said Vishal Singh, the principal magistrate in charge of the Observation Home for Boys in Mukherjee Nagar Delhi.
The skill development courses imparted under the NSDC are meant for adults. But the authorities of the observation home are glad that the NSDC made way to skill its inmates, who are below 18 years of age, under the provisions made for special projects in the revised guidelines.
“We are more than happy that the skill development ministry accepted our proposal and we hope that the new skill centre will add much vigour to our reform initiative,” he said.
He says that among the 150 inmates in the observation home 90 percent belong to very poor families and are school dropouts.
Explaining why they end up committing crimes, Singh said, "They are prisoners of their circumstances. When they see teenagers from affluent families enjoying food in expensive restaurants and riding bikes or cars, they grow a longing for the same kind life. But the path to earn legitimately is already closed for them, as they are school drop outs."
"The only path they see open for themselves is robbing," the judge said.
Even after serving the term, some return to the same life laments the principal magistrate of the observation home that houses teenagers in the age group of 16 to 18 years.
"After getting out of the reformation home a few struggle to live a life with dignity. But many of them are lured by criminal gangs and they turn dreaded criminals later on," he said.
The judicial official hopes that the skilling course will enhance the chances of their returning to normal lives by providing them with livelihoods.
"They will not only acquire the skills to be good bakers and mobile phone mechanics but also a certification of their skill from NSDC after they complete the one-and-half month long course. The certification will enhance their chances to get jobs in the informal sector and also help them in moving on to the formal sector," he said.
Kuriakose said that the certificates they will be provided with will have no mention of the course being imparted in an observation home, and thus will help them to get rid of the social stigma attached to their past lives.
Though the official inauguration of the centre has yet to be done classes have already began.
"They are keen learners. The classes are going on for near about a week now, but not a single instance of unruly behavior has been reported yet," Singh said.
The NSDC is planning to not only extend this scheme to Tihar and Rohtak jail but also to link the produce of the jail inmates with e-commerce portals.
Updated Date: Jan 27, 2017 22:16:49 IST