There are two notable training programmes under the auspices of the Labour Ministry for primarily skilled workers for the organised industrial sector.
The craftsman training is offered in nearly two thousand government run or privately managed Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs). The intake capacity of these institutes amounted to about 327,000 in 1987-88.
There are, in all, 64 trades of which 38 belong to the engineering group. The graduates of these courses find placement in organised public and private sector industrial and business establishments. Some of them go for self employment also. The ITIs offer both X+ and VIll+ level courses in nearly equal numbers.
Most of the courses range in duration from one to two years. The National Council of Vocational Training is the supreme coordinating and policy making body which awards certificates to students on completion of courses. The curriculum is highly practice oriented and the elements of general education are kept at minimum. An ITI graduate is not eligible for university education.
The scheme aims to regulate the programme of training of apprentices in the industry so as to conform to the prescribed syllabi of the Central Apprenticeship Council and to utilize fully the facilities available in the industry for practical training with a view to meet the requirement of skilled workers in industries. There are four categories of apprentice programme: Graduate Apprenticeship for engineering graduates, Technician Apprenticeship for diploma holders from polytechnics, Trade Apprenticeship for the graduates of ITIs and Technician (Vocational) Apprenticeship for the graduates of higher secondary vocational courses. There are 71 subjects and 12,000 technician apprentices training at a time.
In addition, the Ministry of Labour also runs advanced Vocational Training System and vocational training programmes particularly for women in separate institutes.
There are three councils at the national level to regulate the training programmes; in their respective areas such as the Indian Nursing Council, the Indian Pharmacy Council under the Ministry of Social Welfare. In other health and paramedical areas, the health departments of the state governments conduct their own training programmes to meet their health manpower requirements.
These courses, under the control of a variety of authorities, are marked by an absence of standardized course content and proficiency level. it is difficult to make an estimate of output of the health manpower training and production system. Hospital based training, as an internal supply system, is also a prevalent mode. The curricula have little theoretical content in many situations and almost always these courses lead to a dead end in terms of opportunity for higher education.
The Indian Council of Agricultural Research is primarily concerned with graduate and post graduate agricultural education and research. There are a few non formal training programmes for the rural youth through the Agricultural Science Centres and Agricultural Universities. There is hardly a system for production of middle level skilled manpower for the agricultural sector. In some states there are some government run agricultural schools but they often provide post induction training to village level workers and other personnel. A manpower production system aiming at vocational development for self employment hardly exists in India in the domain of agriculture.
The training system in the field of business and commerce is highly diverse. There are a large number of institutes and teaching shops throughout the country teaching many of the office trades and other vocations in salesmanship, marketing etc. There is no available estimate of the size of the supply system and the quality of its products.