SKILLING &TRANSITION IN THE INDIAN ARMY
“A Prospective Retiree acquires an aspiration linked skill, is suitably placed in a job
on retirement,Thus harnessing his inherent potential in nation building &
empoweringhim to lead a dignified lifeas a veteran”
The Indian Army raised the Directorate of Indian Army Veterans (DIAV) directly under the Adjutant General for the sole purpose of providing Single Window Redress and Welfare mechanism for our Veterans, Veer Naris/ Widows and NoKs. In the recent past the media in all its forms have brought out the plight of our veterans especially owing to their inability to find suitable jobs post retirement. The issue that drew immediate attention of those who matter, stems from the fact that every year the Army retires as many as 50,000 troops in the rank of Junior Commissioned Officers (JCO) and Other Ranks (ORs). This is driven by the national security requirement of keeping our army young, in order to ensure its battlereadinessto keep the nation secure from all forms of threats – External and Internal. The concern emerges from the fact that the bulk of these troops are in the age bracket of 36.5 years of age to 43.5 years. A phase in life, where personal responsibilities are overwhelming and the pay cuts to half – a veteran begins to draw pension. This is where DIAV steps in, to facilitate a smooth transition through structured Orientation, Awareness, Counselling, Empowering and Enabling phases.
The empowerment programme for prospective retirees was launched in May 2016 under the Government’s flagship scheme, ‘Pradhan MantriKaushalVikasYojna’ (PMKVY), through National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC). There is a continuous process of reviewing the initiative to improve and better serve the target population. The initial fillipto the Skilling Initiative was through integral resources of the organisation at various regimental centres. With no resources at these establishments authorised for the purpose, in fact led to multitasking available manpower and related assets. It was then decided that it is essential for the Centres to remain focussed on their primary tasks of recruit training, in-service training and demobilise drill for retiring troops. Towards this, NSDC recognised Training Partners (TP) have been taken on-board for Skill Training Delivery at various Centres. This model has been termed as the Technical Training Partner (TTP) Model in our Skills Ecosystem. Further, the TTP Model binds the TTP through a financial liability in ensuring suitable job connect for job-seeking skilled prospective retirees. Skill courses for prospective retirees are currently offered in varied sectors like Automotive, Agriculture, Capita Goods, Construction, Healthcare, Tourism & Hospitality, Security, Telecom, Electronics, Retail and Logistics.
The Skilling Initiative since its commencement has witnessed nearly 20,000 prospective retirees enrolling for various skill courses. The aim, is to provide one such opportunity to every prospective retiree, this will leave the prospective retiree with a sense of security that, if not immediately, whenever required, there is a recognised vocational qualification that may stand him in good stead in his hour of need. TTP-Model is likely to mature in the coming months that will essentially lay down a job connect as also enhance skill training capacity.
Army Skill Training Centres are driven by Compassion and Purpose to Enable and Empower army Spouses and wards to become Mainstream Contributors in their Household
Through NSQF Certified Courses, thus enhancing their true self-worth
Efforts have been ongoingto enhance the canvas of possibilities for empowering army spouses and wards through NSQF aligned skill courses. In the first year, eight Army Skill Training Centres (ASTCs) have been established and are successfully conducting skill courses. The change that ASTCs have brought in the overall personality of the army spouses attending various skill courses is encouraging and satisfying. ASTCs have provided these ladies the platform to realise their own potential, have made them confident, capable and enhanced their self-respect manifold. There has been a discernible change in the manner their children and husbands perceive them after successful completion of the Skill Course. Infact the ASTCs have truly contributed not only to ‘Skill India’mission but also to ‘BetiParhao’ and ‘BetiBachao’ missions of our government. There are 14 ASTCs due for launch shortly and another 28 in pipeline, thus taking the tally of ASTCs to 50 in the coming year. These ASTCs are coming up across the country at various cantonments and military stations giving opportunities to many. Those who have successfully completed skill courses have constantly been motivated to put their skills to good use, either through self-employment or jobs. Success stories of ASTCs are on the anvil with pioneers who will serve as motivators to all.
Army’s Skills Initiative encompassing wide spectrum of the Army fraternity is in its Stabilisation Phase, where focus remains on facilitating suitable options for viable jobs for our veterans as also for army spouses. While at this stage there are humble beginnings, DIAV is resolute in its determination to arrive at a model for Skilling& Transition where job connect becomes an inherent part of the overall initiative. Ingenuity coupled with innovative approach has ushered in a new phase in Skilling & Transition with the launch of TTP-Model to skill prospective retirees where job connect is in-built. DIAV remains in constant touch with various stakeholders to periodically review its approach to best serve the aspirations of our target population.