Guwahati, June 17, 2019:
Serious charges of corruption have been leveled against Assam Minister Chandramohan Patowary. It has been alleged that funds amounting to Rs. 1,000 crores had been misappropriated in the state in the name of ‘Skill Development’.
Certain media outlets alleged that the current administration’s talk of generating employment in various sectors is mere “drama” and said that a web portal had been set up to run scams in the name of employment generation, whereas actual employment is close to nil. But the persons who have been named in this so-called ‘scam’ have rubbished these reports.
Responding to these allegations, Skill, Employment & Entrepreneurship Development Minister Chandramohan Patowary has said: “The entire project is worth only Rs. 113 crores, while some people have alleged that there is a scam worth Rs. 1,000 crores! Unfounded allegations like these will only serve to discourage the people associated with this project.”
Addressing the press here today, the Minister said that the Assam Skill Development Mission (ASDM) started functioning as an apex body of all skill initiatives in the state since Dec 2017 with the aim of creating a sustainable skill ecosystem for convergence of quality skills training and enhancing the employ-ability of the youth.
Chandramohan Potowary has also stated that the Government has accorded a sum of Rs. 113 crores for imparting skill training.
It has been pointed out that training is being provided at 597 training centres, 40,840 youths have been trained under this mission, while 49,787 are still undergoing training.
Vouching for the legality of the process, the Minister has asserted that post completion of the training, Assessment and Certification of the trained candidates is conducted by SSC which is recognised by MSDE, Govt of India.
ASDM Skill Training are imparted through Training Providers, the Minister clarified. “The target is awarded to the training Providers on fulfilling the guidelines of SSC norms in respect of lab size and equipment and requisite qualification of the trainer”, he said.
According to Patowary, no payment is made to the students and the mode of payment is through the training providers as per the Common Cost Norm defined by the Govt of India.
The entire life cycle of the candidate, depends on the no of hours being allotted for the job role and after completion of the training of the candidate, the assessment of the candidate is being conducted by Sector Skill Council and Certified by the Sector Skill Council which is recognised by MSDE Govt of India.
Chandramohan Patowary has also stated that once the Certification of the candidate is being done, then TP has to place the candidate and 3 month follow up to be done by the TP.
In this cycle, Patowary said, the mode of payment is made as 30% at the time of Candidates Registration is done, 50% of payment is done after the Assessment and Certification of the candidates and the last and final payment is done to the TPs after getting candidates placed and track record is maintained for three months.
In all this process, it takes a minimum 9 months to complete the cycle. To keep the proper track record of the candidates / TPs / TCs, ASDM has developed a State Specific MIS Portal with a total cost of Rs. 3.20 crore to be spent over 3 years. A separate fund is earmarked for development of the MIS portal and the fund of Rs 800 deducted for mobilization is not utilised for the same.
Mobilization fund is used for brand building and creating awareness about the skill training in the society ASDM is deducting Rs. 800 per candidate against the first instalment invoice submitted by the Training Providers.
The amount is not deducted as a whole from the sanctioned target. Out of the same amount, an amount of Rs. 350 is refunded to the TPs after submission of original Uniform Bills of the candidates. The remaining amount of Rs. 450 per candidate is being used for: Creating Awareness about ASDM across the state, Placement Drives/Job Fairs, Street plays, Work Shops and Seminars, Skill Conclaves, and Advertisement in newspapers, magazines and journals and Web Portal.
It may be mentioned that numerous other initiatives are also carried out under the aegis of the Assam Skill Development Mission such as the: North East Skill Centre (NESC), Karagar se Karigar, Swavalamban Scheme, National Urban Livelihood Mission, Skill City, the Technical Intern Training Program, etc.
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