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Multi disciplinary skill development programme in Assam

This content provides information about the Multi-Disciplinary Skill Development Programme (MDSDP) in Assam.


One of the major initiatives taken by the Department of Industry and Commerce, Government of Assam, is the Multi-disciplinary Skill Development Programme (MDSDP), started since 2011-12 with a mission to impart market demand-driven skill training to 2 lakh youth in Assam by 2019. The programme has special emphasis on youth from vulnerable social groups like Tea & Ex-Tea Community, Flood & Erosion affected people, people residing in Char areas and to facilitate linkages for gainful employment and self-employment through collaborations with public, private and non-profit entities.


The objective of the MDSD Programme emanates from the learning of two ground breaking studies conducted by the Department of Industries & Commerce which are:

1. Resource Mapping Survey:

A resource mapping survey conducted at block levels of all the 27 districts of the state looked at availability of local resources and on-going traditional activities especially in the sphere of crafts. It also identified the traditional 'flare' and skills of local artisans in different clusters and requirement of skill up-gradation and diversification in these traditional crafts. For e.g. traditional weaving in Assam's villages needs skill up- gradation in terms of demand oriented designs. Again, "Sital Pati" (a kind of mat woven from local reeds) weavers can diversify their skills into making bags and other utility products.

2. Employment Engagement Survey of Youth of Assam outside the State:

Another study conducted by Industries & Commerce Department throughout the country to ascertain number of youth of the state working in different parts of the country (outside the state) has revealed that:

  1. Around 8 lakh youth work in different parts of the country with approximately 84% of them working in the Southern part of the country (Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh & Telangana and Puducherry).
  2. Western part of the country (comprising of states like Maharashtra, Goa, Gujarat, Rajasthan, etc.) where around 11% of the youth are working.

The key trades where these youth are employed are:

  • Industries & Construction (43%)
  • Private Security Agencies (29%)
  • Retail Trade (10%)
  • Hospitality Services (6%)
  • Information Technology/Engineering Services (6%)

From both these studies the important takeaway is that the youth of the state possess certain inherent flares in both traditional and also in new generation employment activities in industrial and commercial sectors.

Therefore, the objective of the MDSD Programme is to:

  • facilitate imparting of skill training to rural and semi-urban youth for gainful employment in new generation industrial and commercial activities
  • facilitate further consolidation of their 'flares' by upgrading traditional skills both in terms of design and technology


To achieve the above objective, the programme has adapted a four- pronged strategic approach, viz:

  • Dedicated MDSD training centres in each development block
  • Collaboration with the best National level Training Service Providers (TSPs)
  • Creating platforms/tie-ups for
  • Linking trained youth to industries and commercial services organizations for placement.
  • Linking trained youth start-up capital and banks for their self-employment activities.
  • Building capacity of local organizations (both profit and not-for-profit) to become efficient Training Service Providers (TSP).

Key takeaways

The focus is on enhancing inclusivity by reducing divisions such as male/female, rural/urban, organized/unorganized employment and traditional/contemporary workplace. The programme identified the traditional 'flare' and skills of local artisans in different clusters and requirement of skill up-gradation and diversification in these traditional crafts. Skill development initiatives support the supply of trained workers who are dynamic to the changing demands of employment and technologies.

For more information, click here.

Source : Skilling for employability - Best Practices

Romen Chakraborty Sep 27, 2018 05:47 PM

Although the Assam Skill Development Mission & National Skill Development Mission are very proactive in regard to implementation of skill development initiatives, but the net output does not appear to be very encouraging. For one reason or the other, the PPP partners are not discharging their social responsibilities properly and the Government training centres are suffering from shortage of training materials and non-availability of trainers. In my opinion, a periodical assessment of the trainer institutions by persons of proven track record of skill and integrity should be put in place, so that corrective measures can be initiated promptly.

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