Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Wednesday unveiled measures to leverage India's "huge demographic advantage" and maximise the employability potential of the youth, and also announced a Rs 4,000-crore programme 'SANKALP', aimed at providing market relevant training to 3.5 crore youth across the country.
Presenting Budget for 2017-18 in Parliament, Jaitley described "energising youth through education, skills and jobs" as one of the government's 10 important focus areas.
He said the government proposes to extend Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Kendras to more than 600 districts across the country, from 60 districts at present.
Moreover, 100 India International Skill Centres will be established across the country to offer advanced training and also courses in foreign languages, which Jaitley said, "will help those of our youth who seek job opportunities outside the country".
The Finance Minister said that in 2017-18, a programme SANKALP (Skill Acquisition and Knowledge Awareness for Livelihood Promotion Programme) will be launched at a cost of Rs 4,000 crore. SANKALP will provide market relevant training to 3.5 crore youth.
Besides, Jaitley said the next phase of skill strengthening for industrial value enhancement (STRIVE) will be launched in 2017-18 at a cost of Rs 2,200 crore. STRIVE will focus to improve on the quality and the market relevance of vocational training provided in ITIs and strengthen the apprenticeship programme through industry-cluster approach.