The 2 nd edition of ‘Awards for Excellence in District Skill
Development Planning’ (DSDP) were organised today with great fervour and fanfare at
Dr. Ambedkar International Centre in New Delhi where top 30 districts were awarded for
their innovative best practices in skill development in the region. Rajkot in Gujarat,
Cachar in Assam and Satara in Maharashtra respectively were ranked top three among
all participating districts.
District Collectors, District Magistrates and other representatives from across 30
States attended the award ceremony and shared their ideas & experiences and
presented the skill development work done at the grassroot level in their districts. Thirty
districts were selected, and awards were given under the following three categories:
Category I: 8 Awards for Excellence in District Skill Development Planning
Category II: 13 Certificate for Excellence in District Skill Development Planning
Category III: 9 Letter of Appreciation for District Skill Development Planning
Later in an interactive session, the officials met the Hon’ble Minister of Education and
Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Shri Dharmendra Pradhan, and Hon’ble
Minister of State (MoS) for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, and Electronics
and IT Shri Rajeev Chandrasekhar and shared best practices and work done in their
Shri Dharmendra Pradhan asked the District Collectors, District Magistrates and other
officials to carry out demand-mapping of the skilled workforce and drive awareness
about skill development initiatives at the local level. He said that skilling is a lifelong
process and the DCs should further the entire continuum of skill development and work
towards strengthening the skill development ecosystem through innovative planning at
the district level.
In light of recent disruptions brought by technology, districts were advised to adopt a
bottom-up approach towards skill development, from both the Ministers.
Guided by the Prime Minister’s vision of macro-planning for micro-implementation,
DSDP Awards act as a guide for DSCs in integrating district plans with state- and
national-level skill development planning.
Congratulating all participants, Shri Dharmendra Pradhan, Minister of Education and
Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, said all planning for skill development
should have a link to the local economy, and that the way to an Aatmanirbhar Bharat is
through the building of Atmanirbhar districts. Shri Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Minister of
State (MoS) for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, and Electronics and IT,
said the awards were reflective of the Centre’s intention to build an ancillary skill
ecosystem where multi-skilling opportunities gave rise to ‘village engineers’ and
increased livelihood chances. The science and method behind skill planning should aim
to catalyse the local economy by creating multiple avenues of skilling and multiple job
roles, he said.
Shri Ved Mani Tiwari, Chief Operating Officer and Officiating Chief Executive Officer,
National Skill Development Corporation, also presented the Skill India Digital Roadmap
highlighting future skills and opportunities for local administrations to focus their
attention on to boost local economy.
Lauding the work done by the districts, Shri Rajesh Aggarwal, Secretary, Ministry of
Skill Development & Entrepreneurship, said, “Riding on its unique demographic
dividend, India is on the path to fulfil Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s vision
of becoming the Skill Capital of the World. Many countries with ageing populations are
banking on India for skilled workers, and global companies are keen on starting
businesses in India. There is an urgent need to skill, reskill and upskill the country’s
youth and districts can play a pivotal role in fulfilling this mission. I encourage all district
magistrates to keep an eye on the global scenario and align their skill development
In order to build a high value addition economy, districts should ensure that trained
youngsters also get hands-on experience in the process. I congratulate all winners of
DSDP Awards and laud their excellent effort in creating functional and innovative plans.
I am certain with optimal utilization of district-level resources and institutions, we will
swiftly more towards fulfilling the vision of creating a Skill India,” he added.
Among winning districts, the Rajkot DSC has implemented several projects to augment
skill development in the district. With a strong focus on skilling Persons with Disability
(PwD), the district has supported people with learning disabilities and dyslexia.
Short shelf life and high transportation cost were posing a supply chain challenge to
pineapple farmers of Assam’s Cachar district, forcing them to dispose of large quantities
of the fruit and sell them at sub-par market prices. By setting up a processing unit for
manufacturing pineapple products locally, the Cachar DSC came up with a quick
solution to address the problem. This gave farmers the flex and the bargaining capacity
to sell pineapples at a handsome profit once more.
At Satara in Maharashtra, the DSC implemented various programmes to strengthen
skilling, and training a workforce for disaster management. The district has also owned
the responsibility of empowering women affected during COVID with skill training.
DSDP Awards were instituted under the Skill Acquisition and Knowledge Awareness for
Livelihood Promotion (SANKALP) Scheme by MSDE in June 2018 to promote
decentralised planning, acknowledge and reward the extraordinary and innovative work
done by districts in the field of skill development. The first DSDP Awards were held in
2018-19, with 228 districts from 19 states participating in the initiative. Districts with
plans of fostering innovation and enabling local livelihoods with skill development
initiatives were shortlisted for the awards.
MSDE envisages these awards will encourage all District Skill Committees (DSCs) and
will promote better understanding around DSDP by using capabilities for implementing
targeted projects at the district level. The project aims to maximise the impact of
SANKALP’s primary initiative, which is to strengthen institutional mechanisms for skill
development at the state and district levels.
IIT Delhi and IIT Kharagpur were chosen as evaluation partners to assess the award