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Skills ministry debating if less-productive jobs must be taught to boost village economy

The debate within the ministry comes as India continues to face a difficult job situation.

July 13, 2022 / 07:51 PM IST

The Ministry of Skills Development and Entrepreneurship is internally debating whether it should impart skills for less- productive jobs to reduce migration to urban centres and boost village economies.

"The data seems to suggest that whenever we skill people...many of them ultimately migrate to urban areas. That's where the jobs are," said Rajesh Aggarwal, secretary in the Ministry of Skills Development and Entrepreneurship.

"So should the skill ministry keep spending money for this kind of migration or should we also be focussing on maybe slightly less-productive jobs where we try to grow the GDP of villages? I don't know."

"In our ministry, we are having an intense debate that should we also focus on creating jobs or skilling of jobs where kids remain in the village only… (maybe) a 6,000-rupee job in the village is probably better than 10,000-rupee job 200 kilometres away or 20,000-rupee job 2,000 kilometres away. That's a debate we are having and we are quite ambivalent about it. So we will be experimenting on this," Aggarwal said on July 13 at the India Policy Forum, organised by the National Council of Applied Economic Research.