World-class Skill Development Programme is a Positive Initiative

Published on 29 Feb, 2008

New York: February 29, 2008 - Aranca, a global provider of end-to-end financial and business research services, believes that the Union Budget of India 2008-09 presented today is populist but inclusive budget, given the prospect of general elections in mid 2009. The increase in the income tax exemption limits, loan waivers for farmers and higher provisions for social expenditure all point out to a feel-good budget. Buoyant tax receipts gave the freedom to the Finance Minister to increase social spending while reducing the budgeted fiscal deficit targets.

In an interesting initiative, the Finance Minister has allocated a budget of Rs. 15,000 crore for creating a non-profit corporation aimed at creating world-class skill development programme in India. When compared with a total outlay for the education sector (including NER) of Rs.34,400 crore for 2008-09, this is significant. While the details on the actual contours of this initiative and the charter for the corporation are still unknown, this programme seems promising especially for talent-starved knowledge-driven companies and research companies.

"With nearly 225 million people in the age group of 10 -19 years, most of whom are likely to join the active work force in next 3-5 years, the need for providing skills other than pedagogical cannot be emphasized more," said Madhusudan Rajagopalan, Director, Aranca India Operations. "If we want to benefit from the $12 billion knowledge process outsourcing opportunity, then we need to have a nation-wide programme focusing on skill development that turns graduates and post-graduates into employable resources for world-class research work," he said.

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