Millennium Post

‘Skill-based training is vital’

What is the main objective of NIEIT? What purpose was it set up for?
NIEIT is basically the extended arm of Department of Electrics and Information Technology (DEIT) and the  purpose it was constituted was to work in the field of capacity building in the formal and informal sector, non-formal include those courses which are open to anyone and the students can opt for these courses anywhere. Formal courses include those which are recognised and approved by the AICT, we are running some formal courses like M. tech and MCA in places like Aurangabad, Srinagar and Calicut. We have introduced capacity building in other emerging areas too like e-governance, electronics sector design manufacturing, JIS and cloud computing. We also started conducting training for government officers in accordance with the DRPG directions at the level of directors and under-secretary. We do some research and development work too and besides that we do software consultancy jobs and undertake certain turnkey projects like National Population Register project which we recently completed.

What kind of programmes do you offer? Are they more skill-based or knowledge based?
We were initially conducting various formal and non-formal courses which were more knowledge based but since I have joined here I have brought
skill-development into perspective,  now we’ve started considering the component of skill-development quite important because I feel without skill-development it is very difficult to get
placements anywhere these days.

Can you tell us about the institutes’s scheme of  Empowering Women in Rural India through Digital Literacy?
We are conducting a lot of courses on women empowerment and SC/ST empowerment because we are operating on those locations which are very remote or far-flung like the northeastern regions where no commercial organisation will go for a venture. When people ask me about how our organisation is different from the others then I tell them that we are a government organisation, our mandate is to provide skill development in those areas where nowhere is going like Kekadi in Ajmer, Srinagar, Leh, Srikakulam. We are planning to set up almost 22 centres in northeast. We get funding and granting from the government of India, similarly, we have received sponsored project from DEIT for empowerment of women, we recently finished one project on empowerment of 25,000 women through capacity building in the form of BPO courses and other skill-development trainings.

Where are your main branches located, are you planning to come up with more institutions?
We have our centres in almost 60 per cent states of the country, our main focus is north east though, we have main centres and extension centres there. We also have a centre in Delhi, Chandigarh, Ajmer, Srinagar, Jammu, Aurangabad, Calicut. New centres are coming up in Rohpat, Srikakulam in Andhra Pradesh and many new extension centres in the northeast.

Can you tell us about some major achievements of the institute?
Yes, we are running one of the major digital literacy course called CCC (Concept on Computer), a couple of states have also made it as a mandate course and it is linked with increment, employment and bears minimum eligibility for a government job in states like Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh. We have conducted tests for 12 lakhs such government employees, our main aim is digital literacy. The course which we are running is a well-known one, a number of foreign countries like Japan, Taiwan and Singapore have accredited our courses too. Last month we signed a MOU with All India Council of Technical Education where we aligned our courses with theirs. We are providing training for the places where we feel that it will be difficult for a student to opt for a regular course. We have recently started conducting recruitment exams too like commercial pilot for Civil
Aviation Department.

Considering that digital literacy is one of your primary focuses, have you taken any steps to enhance or strengthen e-security?
Yes, definitely. Our Gorakhpur centre is very famous for e-security and cyber crimes, they have been conducting a lot of courses related to the cyber space there, we are trying to carry forward these courses to other centres also. We have already developed our course content in 22 different Indian languages for CCC course which is an 80 hours course and the same has been uploaded on the website of NIEIT which is available free of cost for anyone. Looking at the recent trend and demands, we have also started a new course on multimedia and we have started an e-governance course both of which are one year PG diploma programmes.

Can you tell us about your IT Literacy programme?
We have received three major projects from the IT department of Government of India and from the Panchayati Raj Department where we have to train almost a lakh Panchayati Raj officials, we have been taking it up further. Besides this we have received one project from the DEIT for training of the women entrepreneurs who are operating in Common Service Centres(CSC) in the remote areas, we have also created a PMU for taking other challenges in the field of digital literacy.
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