Skill development is key to empowerment of minority youth – Najma Heptulla

Skill development is key to empowerment of minority youth – Najma Heptulla
The Union Minister for Minority Affairs, Dr. Najma Heptulla has said that the government is laying greater stress on skill development of minorities to increase their employability and help them become self reliant.
Interacting with media persons in Mumbai on Saturday, after an extensive meeting with the Central and State departments concerned with minority affairs and members of the Wakf Board, Dr. Heptulla said reservation for minorities does not address the problem of unemployment completely; instead skill development would make minority youth self sufficient.
Outlining the government’s resovle, Dr. Heptulla said the activities of the National Minority Development and Financial Corporation (NMDFC) and the Maulana Azad National Academy for Skills (MANAS) are being expanded across the country.  She said the New Delhi based NMDFC is opening four Regional Offices in Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata and Guwahati.  The soon to be opened Regional office at Mumbai will cater to the entrepreneurial needs of minorities in the states of Maharashtra  and Gujarat.
Under the MANAS initiative it is targeted to provide jobs to 10,000 youth upto 31st March, 2015.  Those who opt for self employment, concessional finance would be made available, she said.  MANAS is finalizing tie up with 5 Sector Skill Councils in the areas of retailing, banking insurance and financial services, construction, gems and jewellery of beauty and wellness.  These Councils will impart employment related training to the minority youth in the states of Maharashtra and Gujarat.  It is also making efforts to identify and preserve traditional arts / crafts / trades of minorities which are languishing due to globalisation and technological advancement.
MANAS has been established as an ambitious and overarching skill development architecture.  It is expected to provide All India Training Framework with tie-ups with National /Inte3rnational training organisations under PPP model.  Imparting training will be in skills currently in demand.  MANAS has unique feature of integrating training with extending concessional credit to trainees for undertaking training, setting up of new business / expansion of existing business and loan for meeting expenses for overseas placement.
PIB Release/IVJ (MD)