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Karnataka, India to Transform Industrial Training Institutes into Technology Hubs

Karnataka has announced a programme to up-skill its youth workforce through Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs), by converting 150 of them into technology hubs. ITIs are post-secondary schools in India constituted under the Directorate General of Training (DGT) of the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship to provide training courses. According to a news report, the Chief Minister (CM), B.S. Yediyurappa, noted that the ITIs will be upgraded as part of an agreement with a private tech giant. The programme will refurbish 78 old labs and establish 72 new ones. It is expected to be completed by September.

Programmes for Upskilling

As the state has a population of 22.1 million between the ages of 16 and 35, several programmes have been initiated to improve economic and social development by technically skilling the youth to global standards. The CM announced that a Karnataka Skill and Livelihood Taskforce had been set up to create ten million job opportunities in the next five years. To provide an international-level quality of training, ITIs have tied up with leading industrial enterprises and the curriculum has been revamped. The programme is focused on apprenticeship, and 30,000 apprentices will receive incentives from the government. Currently, the state has 24 government tool rooms and training centres (GTTCs), six more will be added soon.

Another scheme, the ‘Knowledge Skill Initiative’ will be implemented in all the schools by the task force. The government will also open two more Karnataka German Technology Training Institutes (KGTTIs) at Belagavi and Mangaluru. This is in addition to the five such institutes across the state. The government is also launching a ‘skill hub’ which integrates all the skill development programmes initiated by various departments.

Further, the government recently signed Memorandums of Understanding (MoU) to begin courses related to the automotive sector in selected ITIs in Bengaluru, Ramanagara, and Tumakuru in collaboration with private players. Meanwhile, Deputy Chief Minister, Ashwath Narayan, who is in charge of skill development, entrepreneurship, and livelihood, said a programme named ‘Udyoga’ to offer new skill-based diploma courses would be launched in October.

Earlier this month, the state government opened the Karnataka Digital Economy Mission (KDEM) office as a part of its Beyond Bengaluru programme to create technology clusters in tier-II cities. The office will bring together industrialists, entrepreneurs, academicians, and start-ups. It will act as a bridge between the government and the industry. It is a public-private partnership venture.

As per a news report, the state government’s Beyond Bengaluru initiative plans to use the pandemic to create ecosystems in emerging IT destinations and leverage trained human resources by providing them employment opportunities locally. “The state government is committed to balancing economic growth and employment opportunities across the state. Beyond Bengaluru will transform the digital economy in clusters like Hubballi, Mysuru, and Mangaluru,” the Deputy CM said. The government has set a target to create 10,000 start-ups and 10,00,000 IT professionals by 2030, under the Beyond Bengaluru programme.

Last month, the state unveiled a new technology platform to facilitate and streamline Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) funding for various developmental activities. As OpenGov Asia reported, the online portal, Akanksha, was developed in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). It allows corporates to identify sectors where they want to put their CSR money. The collaboration also enables the CSR stakeholders to align their CSR goals with the state’s SDG (Sustainable Development Goals) priorities and showcase the best CSR practices for further scale-up. The CM called it a first-of-its-kind initiative in the country.

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