The Telegraph
Thursday , July 10 , 2014
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Govt mulls polytechnic upgrade

- Institutions will train 7500 youths from the region

Tura, July 9: The Meghalaya government is mulling an ambitious skill development course in the three state-run polytechnic institutions, which will train 7,500 students from Meghalaya and other northeastern states.

Chief minister Mukul Sangma said the existing polytechnic institution in Shillong, Tura and Jowai would be upgraded as a centre of excellence.

The centre will be set up at a cost of Rs 500 crore, of which the state will invest 10 per cent and the rest will be invested by multinational companies.

“Investors have assured to work with the state government to set up the centre of excellence,” he said. In each of the three polytechnic institutes, a total of 2,500 students will be admitted from across the Northeast.

“Courses will be designed in such a manner, which can fill in the job space available by harping on the potential youth energy. It will be attractive not only for the students of Meghalaya but for other northeastern states, who would be keen to take up the courses,” said Sangma.

China is rapidly getting older. Three decades ago, only 5 per cent of the population was over 65, today 123 million people, or 9 per cent of the population, are over this age. A report released by a government think tank forecasts that China will become the world’s most aged society in 2030. Further, by 2050 China’s older population will most likely swell to 330 million, or a quarter of its total population.

Addressing a gathering of young students at Tura, he said, “China’s ageing population has posed a threat to the economic giant and India has to take the opportunity to woo investment in different sectors like textile, construction and manufacturing.”

Making a blunt remark that China’s ageing population is set to affect the economic performance vis-à-vis provide scope for others, he said, “Meghalaya and the Northeast can fill in the gap, which will open a new vista for growth and job opportunities. We need to take advantage of the situation in China and create a workforce, which will attract investors to look beyond Delhi and Mumbai, when they think of India.”

Focusing on the trends, which indicate that there will be a drop in the productive labour force in China by 2020, he said, “India under its National Skill Development Council headed by the Prime Minister and chief minister at the state level has the mandate to prepare the required qualified workforce. Meghalaya has been working towards this end.”

He said the government of Meghalaya is looking at all categories of the youth in view of the job space.

“Investment is bound to happen as Meghalaya will have the workforce, skilled labour and land available for setting up an industry or a manufacturing unit,” he said.

Sangma has already made it clear that the government is working with different agencies to bring in investment in textile and automobile manufacturing.

On the sidelines of his three-day tour to Garo hills, he told The Telegraph, “International automobile giants and branded apparel companies have expressed their willingness to set up their units in Garo hills.”

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