Through Yuva skill development programme, Delhi police is providing a new source of livelihood to the vulnerable, college dropouts, drug addicts and youth with past criminal record.
Ranjana, a 21-year-old single mother of two girls, is not new to adversities. She was married off at the tender age of 15, and her husband is now serving time in prison on charges of murder. Financial problems and lack of support from parents forced her to take up odd jobs and become a domestic help. While struggling to provide for her children with her meagre earnings, she chanced upon Delhi police’s skill development initiative.
Zeshan (name changed), a habitual pickpocket, has spent a considerable time of his youth in a constant tug of war with the police. After getting caught in yet another robbery, Delhi police suggested that he too should get himself enrolled for their initiative.
Today, after completing their training from Yuva, a Delhi Police initiative under Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY), these two individuals like thousands of others are earning a daily livelihood. Ranjana earns a monthly salary of Rs 11,500 and is currently employed with Star Imagine and Pathlab Pvt. Ltd.
KP Krishnan, Secretary at Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, says,
Project Yuva with an aim to keep the youth away from crime and to provide street children and unemployed youth with relevant skills training across various job roles will not only help us in moving a step closer to becoming a ‘skilled nation’ but will also help witness a decrease in crime. These young adults enter into wrong practices due to the lack of employment opportunities for them.
Focus on the vulnerable
Inaugurating the Yuva programme, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh said,
These kinds of initiatives improve the image of the police among common man. The Police should engage with the youth who are prone to drug addiction and other crimes. It is the collective responsibility of the police and the society to bring the youth of the country on the right path.
The National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) in collaboration with Delhi Police, under the Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY), has opened skill development training centres in the police stations with the aim to train 2,700 youngsters between the age group of 16 to 25 years. Project YUVA trains candidates living in JJ clusters, including those who are school dropouts or are addicted to drugs under different job oriented short-term courses. The Delhi police provides the infrastructure and also helps in the enrolment of candidates).
Sanjay Beniwal, Special Commissioner of Police (Airport, Modernisation, and Women Safety) said,
Many youngsters NSDC has trained have already got jobs. Earlier, the police station was a place where people came only when they were in distress. We also want to change this.
Youth involved in petty crimes have also been roped into the project to bring them back into the mainstream so that they do not get involved in criminal activity again.
20-year-old Rahul Yadav (name changed) was among the 10 individuals, with prior criminal record, who opted for a change of livelihood. He was previously involved in a minor theft and taken into police custody when found gambling in a park near his place.
This project was then in its beginning phase. The police officials of Kirti Nagar counselled him to take admission in YUVA scheme and upon their persuasion, Rahul enrolled himself for computer hardware course. He is today employed by Star Imagine and Pathlab Private limited as an Assistant Engineer.
The Delhi Police identified over 3,000 youth coming from vulnerable backgrounds — either from economically weak background or from the families whose members have been jailed.
The programme began on August 29, 2017, and total of 2269 candidates got enrolled. The initiative hopes to provide 70-80 percent of the youth under this project with employment.
Till date, 250 candidates have been placed in Hero MotoCorp, Vodafone, café Coffee day, Fortis Hospital, Burger King.
A new chance
Training not only succeeds in making these individuals employable, but the police also hopes that this would reduce the recidivism rate (tendency of falling back into criminal activities). Across Delhi, eight police stations have been chosen to drive the first phase of this initiative. Training centres have been set up as per the guidelines of NSDC.
Under Phase-I of the project, five police stations namely Shahadra, Rohini, Kirti Nagar, Lajpat Nagar and Ushmanpur have been identified to train the youth. In the next phase of the project, 32 police station premises have been identified to be used for the skill training of the youth.
The candidates gain skill development training in various job roles such as field technician, computing and peripherals, domestic data entry operator, make-up artist, front office associate, F & B Service, etc. Besides, personality development and English-speaking classes have been introduced for the youth.
Further, the dropout rate has been zero percent till now.
Youth coming for skill training in a police station could be seen as a huge step in building up their confidence and faith in police organisation and it will go a long way in constructing a positive image of the police.