• The three-month old Captain Amarinder Singh led Congress Government in Punjab seems to be seriously trying to do some out of the box thinking in an effort to bring the state back to somewhere near the predominant position it once held in the country. And one of these efforts is visible in the field of skill development.

In another step towards forging direct alliances between its own planned international skill training centres and reputed foreign technical training institutions, Punjab Government on Thursday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the UK Government to impart internationally valid skill development training to youths in Punjab.



Photo By: Life in Chandigarh

The MoU was signed by UK Deputy High Commissioner Chandigarh Andrew Ayre and Punjab Additional Chief Secretary, Technical Education & Industrial Training, G. Vajralingam in the presence of state Technical Education Minister Charanjit Singh Channi, and Adviser, Punjab Skill Development Mission, Sandeep Singh Kaura.

Speaking on the occasion, Channi said the state government was setting up International Skill Training Centres for providing quality skill training to youths in Punjab for rewarding careers in the country and abroad. The British Deputy High Commission Chandigarh has assured a facilitative role in building linkages between Punjab Technical Education and Industrial Training Department, Punjab Skill Development Mission and skill providers in the UK, he added.

In what can be viewed as a very ambitious move, Channi said Punjab Government is keen on setting up its own technical education and skill development college in the UK, where students from the state can be educated and trained by highly qualified trainers and teachers in that country. Preliminary talks have been held with the UK embassy in New Delhi in this regard and the initial response is positive, he shared.

The minister said the purpose behind signing MoUs for direct tie-ups with reputed foreign universities and colleges was to prevent exploitation of youth at the hands of private agents. As part of these associations with foreign institutes, students of four-year courses would get an opportunity to study two years abroad, he added.

Andrew Ayre said this was a first of its kind MoU signed with the Punjab Government in the field of skill development, and is expected go a long way in forging a lasting partnership between Punjab Government and the UK.

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