“Slowly, we have to move towards this point – ‘Walk to Work’ so that leaving their place (home) for work is the last priority for blue-collar workers,” Modi said during an interaction with experts through video link on Tuesday. “Such workers would prefer a job near their village or in their tehsil, so that they can return home by evening.”
Modi sought to know if a digital platform, using artificial intelligence, could suggest availability of skilled manpower in a particular district in high numbers so that when a company decides to expand, it is able to pick a location where skilled manpower of its requirement already exists and “they don’t need to worry about housing and transportation”.
NITI Aayog is developing a portal that will connect 200 million blue-collar and grey-collar workers with job providers in line with the PM’s vision to provide them livelihood in their home states. Niti Aayog’s CEO Amitabh Kant and secretaries of the ministries of labour and employment, textiles, OSD in the health ministry, and senior PMO officials participated in the meeting.
Modi urged them to incorporate the same in a digital platform for livelihood access for blue- and grey-collared workers, on which a presentation was made.
The prime minister also asked for a provision for up-skilling workers to help increase their income. It would help address the demand-supply gap in skills and jobs as well, he said.
“Our country has a mismatch. The kind of people we need – they are not available. And the ones who have the capacity, those opportunities are not there. Hence, our employability rating is low. Can this digital platform offer an analysis to the governments about the kinds of job opportunities companies offer, but skilled manpower of the same is less? If the courses of ITIs have not changed with time – they can use this analysis to change their syllabus and know which courses to teach so that people in that area get employment for years to come,” Modi said.
The PM also said that blue-collar workers generally look for jobs in areas where the couple can get jobs together, and would prefer a company that offers something to take care of their child’s education.
“You should do a study. A majority of blue-collared workers would say they want a good education for their children so that they do not do the same job as their parents did. If this is addressed, it will lead to stability for workers and stopping migration. The digital platform can look at giving better ratings to companies that offer to help these workers in the way of their child’s education. This will help workers choose companies which fulfill their requirements,” the PM said.
He also asked for a global job market mapping and linking India’s job-seekers with the same, saying this was a big need as demand for Indian teachers and nurses abroad is high if they know the relevant foreign language.
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