Development of human resource is crucial for the industrial development of any nation. Upgradation of skills is an important component of Human Resource Development. Training imparted in Institutions alone is not sufficient for acquisition of skills and needs to be supplemented by training in the actual work place.
Apprentices Act, 1961 was enacted with the following objectives :-
· To regulate the programme of training of apprentices in the industry so as to conform to the syllabi, period of training etc. as laid down by the Central Apprenticeship Council; and
· To utilise fully the facilities available in industry for imparting practical training with a view to meeting the requirements of skilled manpower for industry.
EVOLUTION OF APPRENTICESHIP TRAINING SCHEME
· National Apprenticeship Scheme started in 1959 on Voluntary Basis.
· Apprentices Act was enacted in 1961 and implemented w.e.f. 1.3.1962.
· Initially the Act envisaged training of Trade Apprentices.
· The Act was amended in 1973 to include training of Graduate and Diploma Engineers as "Graduate" & "Technician" Apprentices.
· The Act was further amended in 1986 to bring within its purview the training of the 10+2 vocational stream as "Technician (Vocational)" Apprentices.
· It was further amended in 1997 to amend various sections of the Act as regards definition of “establishment” and “worker”, termination of apprenticeship contract, number of apprentices for a designated trade, practical and basic training of apprentices, obligation of employers, penalty for contravening the provisions of the Act and cognizance of offences.
· The Act was again amended in 2008 to amend various sections of the Act as regards reservation for candidates belonging to Other Backward Classes (OBCs), expenditure on Related Instruction (RI) shall be imparted at the cost of employer and the employer shall, when so required, afford all facilities for imparting such instructions and to provide flexibility in respect of ratios prescribed for apprenticeship seats.
· The act was further amended in 2014 replacing Trade-wise regulation by a band of 2.5% to 10% of the total strength of the workers, introduction of optional trades, extending the scope to Non-engineering occupations, doing away with imprisonment for non compliance and limiting the penalties to fine only. Allowing outsourcing of Basic Training and bringing the establishments operating in four or more states into the fold of Central authorities for easy interface, etc.
MONITORING OF THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE ACT
· DGE&T is responsible for implementation of the Act in respect of Trade Apprentices in the Central Government Undertakings & Departments through six Regional Directorates of Apprenticeship Training (RDAT) located at Chennai, Faridabad, Hyderabad, Kanpur, Kolkata, & Mumbai.
· State Apprenticeship Advisers are responsible for implementation of the Act in respect of Trade Apprentices in State Government Undertakings/ Departments and Private Establishments.
· For Graduate, Technician & Technician (Vocational) Apprentices, Department of Education in the Ministry of Human Resource Development is responsible for implementation of the through four Boards of Apprenticeship Training located at Chennai, Kanpur, Kolkata , & Mumbai.
CENTRAL APPRENTICESHIP COUNCIL
· It is an apex statutory body. It advises the Government on laying down of policies and prescribing norms & standards in respect of Apprenticeship Training Scheme (ATS).
· It was reconstituted with effect from 27th March, 2014 for 3 years.
· It is obligatory on the part of employers both in Public and Private Sector establishments having requisites training infrastructure as laid down in the Act, to engage apprentices.
· 259 groups of industries are covered under the Act.
· 28,500 establishments engage apprentices.
· 2.12 lakh training seats for the trade apprentices have been utilized against 3.92 lakh seats identified under the Act.
· 0.43 lakh training seats for Graduate, Technician and Technician (Vocational) Apprentices have been utilized against 1.22 lakh seats identified for these categories.
· The minimum rate of stipend per month payable to trade apprentices is as follows:
Stipend (Year wise)
Minimum Rate of Stipend
70% of minimum wage of semi-skilled workers notified by the respective State or Union territory.
80% of minimum wage of semi-skilled workers notified by the respective State or Union territory.
Third & Fourth Year
90% of minimum wage of semi-skilled workers notified by the respective State or Union territory.
· The expenditure on stipend for trade apprentices is borne by the employers.
· The rates of stipend for Graduate, Technician & Technician (Vocational) apprentices are Rs. 4984 p.m., Rs. 3542 p.m. and Rs. 2758 p.m. respectively. (with effect from 19th December, 2014)
· Expenditure on Stipend for the categories of Graduate, Technician & Technician (Vocational) apprentices is shared equally between the employer and the Central Government.
· Minimum age is 14 years.
· Qualifications vary from Class VIII pass to XII class pass (10+2) system.
· Period of training varies from 6 months to 4 years.
· Training comprises Basic Training and Practical Training followed by Related Instructions as per prescribed syllabus for each trade.
· 259 trades in 39 trade groups have been designated.
· Numbers of seats for apprentices are calculated in the band of 2.5% to 10% of the total strength of the workers.
· Every apprentice and employer has to enter into a contract of apprenticeship training, which is registered by the Apprenticeship Advisers.
· Employers and apprentices have to fulfill their obligations under the Act.
· All India Trade Tests (AITT) for trade apprentices are conducted by National Council of Vocational Training (NCVT) twice a year ( October/ November and April/May).
· National Apprenticeship Certificates (NAC) are awarded to those who pass the AITT.
· NAC is recognized for employment under Govt./Semi-Government departments/ organizations.
· With a view to fostering healthy competition among apprentices as well as establishments, skill competition is organized at local, regional & All India levels.
· Skill competition is held for 15 trades namely; Fitter, Machinist, Turner, Welder (Gas & Electric), Electrician, Mechanic (Motor Vehicle), Tool & Die Maker (Die & Moulds), Tool and Die Maker(Press Tool, Jigs & Fixture), Instrument Mechanic, Draughtsman (Mechanical), Mechanic Machine Tool Maintenance, Wireman, Mechanic(Diesel), Refrigeration & Air-Conditioning Mechanic and Electronics Mechanic.
· 126 subject fields have been designated for the category of Graduate & Technician apprentices. [Annexure IV]
· 128 subject fields have been designated for the category of Technician (Vocational) apprentices. [Annexure V]
· Period of post qualification training for these categories is one year.
· Seats are located based on managerial/supervisory posts and training facilities.
· Training programme is prepared in joint consultation between Apprenticeship Adviser Establishment concerned.
· Certificates are awarded on completion of training by the Deptt. of Education, Ministry of Human Resource Development.