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National Youth Day 2024: Government schemes to empower India’s Youth

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On the occasion of National Youth Day 2024, Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the 27th National Youth Festival in Nashik, Maharashtra on Friday. Addressing the gathering, the Prime Minister said that the day marks the occasion of India’s youth power and is dedicated to the great personality of Swami Vivekananda who filled the county with new energy and enthusiasm during the period of slavery. The Prime Minister conveyed his best wishes to youths across the nation on the occasion of National Youth Day which is celebrated on the birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda.
Addressing the youth at the festival, the PM said, “This guidance of Swami Vivekananda is a great inspiration for the youth of India today in 2024. Today India has come in the top five economies of the world and the power of the youth of India is behind this. Today, India has come in the top three startup ecosystem of the world, and the power of the youth of India is behind this. Today India is making one innovation after another. Today India is filing record patents. Today India is becoming a big manufacturing hub of the world, so its basis is the youth of India, the potential of the youth of India.”
On the occasion of National Youth Day 2024, The CSR Journal takes a look into some of the ongoing schemes by the Government of India for the welfare of youth. These schemes are aimed at youth empowerment, employment, skill development, personality and leadership quality enhancement, and encouragement of sports.

Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY)

The Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship is implementing a flagship scheme under Skill India Mission, which is known as Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY). The scheme is aimed at skilling youth under Short Term Training, Recognition of Prior Learning and Special Project across the country. The objective of this scheme is to enable a large number of Indian youth to take up industry-relevant skill training that will help them in securing a better livelihood.
The scheme is being implemented through two components known as Centrally Sponsored Centrally Managed, which is being implemented by National Skill Development Corporation and Centrally Sponsored State Managed which is being implemented by State Skill Development Missions of the States and Union Territories popularly known as State- Engagement Component of Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana.
Further, an end to end customized entrepreneurship orientation module has been integrated under the Life Skill Course module in the Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) Courses so that candidates undergoing PMKVY skill training receive orientation in entrepreneurship.
PMKVY was launched in 2015 to encourage and promote skill development in the country by providing free short duration skill training and incentivizing this by providing monetary rewards to youth for skill certification. The overall idea is to boost both industry and employability of youths. During its pilot phase in 2015-16, 19.85 lakh candidates were trained.
After the successful implementation of pilot PMKVY (2015-16), PMKVY 2016-20 was launched by scaling up both in terms of Sector and Geography and by greater alignment with other missions of Government of India like Make in India, Digital India, Swachh Bharat, etc. The Scheme is currently being run as PMKVY 4.0

Rural Self Employment Training Institute (RSETI)

RSETIs or Rural Self Employment Training Institutes are managed by Banks with cooperation from the Government of India and respective state governments. There are dedicated institutions to ensure necessary skill training and skill upgradation of the rural underprivileged youth. These are promoted and managed by banks with cooperation from state governments.
One RSETI is established in every district in the countr which is managed by the lead bank in the district. The Government of India provides one time grant assistance up to a maximum of Rs. 1 crore for meeting the expenditure on construction of building and other infrastructure. After successful completion of the training, youths are provided with credit linkage assistance by the banks to start their own entrepreneurial ventures.
The Rural Self Employment Training Institute scheme is being implemented as a sub-scheme of National Rural Livelihood Mission (NRLM). As on August 2023, 590 RSETIs are functioning in 572 districts across 33 States and UTs led by respective Banks and funded by Ministry of Rural Development under the scheme. These RSETIs are extending training to unemployed rural poor youth free of cost.
Welfare of marginalized sections like SC, ST and OBC is taken care by way of training the poor rural unemployed youth free of cost and by ensuring settlement of the trained candidates for taking up self-employment ventures by extending necessary support.

Rashtriya Yuva Sashaktikaran Karyakram Scheme (RYSK)

The Scheme Rashtriya Yuva Sashaktikaran Karyakram (RYSK) is the flagship Central Sector Scheme by the Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports. The Umbrella Scheme has been continuing since 12th Five Year Plan. The Scheme aims to develop the personality and leadership qualities of the youth and to engage them in nation building activities.
The primary objective of the RYSK Scheme is to motivate the youth to strive for excellence in their respective fields and to bring them to the forefront of the development process. It seeks to harness the immense youth energy for national – building. The RYSK Scheme aims at promotion of National Integration, Adventure, Youth Leadership and Personality Development, Development and Empowerment of Adolescents, Technical and Resource Development.
The beneficiaries of this scheme are youth in the age-group of 15-29 years, as per the definition of ‘youth’ in the National Youth Policy, 2014. In case of programme components specifically meant for the adolescents, the age group is 10-19 years.
The 7 sub-schemes under scheme RYSK are:
1.Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan.
2.National Youth Corps.
3.National Programme for Youth and Adolescent Development.
4.International Cooperation.
5.Youth Hostels.
6.Assistance to Scouting and Guiding Organisations.
7.National Young Leaders Programme.
With a view to achieving the objectives of developing the personality and leadership qualities of the youth and to engage them in nation building activities, the Government announced in February, 2022 that it has decided to continue the Scheme over the 15th Finance Commission Cycle (2021-22 to 2025-26) at an outlay of Rs 2,710.65 crore.

Khelo India – National Programme for Development of Sports Scheme

The Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports has been running its flagship Central Sector Scheme, namely, ‘Khelo India – National Programme for Development of Sports’ Scheme since 2016. The scheme, which combines three previous schemes, was re-introduced during the 2017-18 fiscal year, merging the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Abhiyan (RGKA), Urban Sports Infrastructure Scheme (USIS), and National Sports Talent Search Scheme (NSTSS). The scheme mainly benefits youngsters between 10-18 years.
Under the ‘Khelo India Centres’ component of the Khelo India Scheme, as a part of Government’s vision to strengthen the sports ecosystem in the country at the grassroots level, a low-cost, effective sports training mechanism has been developed. State governments can engage former sportspersons as coaches and mentors for youngsters. Further, Sports Authority of India (SAI), an autonomous body under the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, provides opportunity to former sportspersons to be employed as coaches in various sports disciplines.
One of the sub-components of this scheme namely ‘Promotion of rural and indigenous/tribal games’, is dedicated to development of rural and indigenous/tribal games in the country. Under this sub- component of the Khelo India Scheme, Mallakhamb, Kalaripayyattu, Gatka, Thang-Ta,  Silambam and Yogasan  have been  receiving support for infrastructure development, equipment support, appointment of coaches, training of coaches and scholarships to athletes.

Prime Minister Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP)

Launched in August 2008, Prime Minister’s Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP) is a credit-linked subsidy scheme, administered by the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME). PMEGP aims to generate employment opportunities through the establishment of micro-enterprises in the non-farm sector for rural as well as urban areas. The scheme has been approved for continuation over the 15th Finance Commission cycle i.e., for the period of five years from 2021-22 to 2025-26.
PMEGP was formed by merging the two schemes that were in operation till 31st March 2008, namely Prime Minister’s Rojgar Yojana (PMRY) and Rural Employment Generation Programme (REGP). An outlay of Rs 13,554.42 crore has been approved for PMEGP for five Financial Years (2021-22 to 2025-26) to set up about 4,00,000 projects.
The PMEGP scheme is implemented by Khadi and Village Industries Commission functioning as the nodal agency at the national level. At the state level, the scheme is implemented through State KVIC Directorates, State Khadi and Village Industries Boards (KVIBs), District Industries Centres (DICs) and banks. In such cases KVIC routes government subsidy through designated banks for eventual disbursal to the beneficiaries / entrepreneurs directly into their bank accounts.
Any individual, above 18 years of age can apply for this scheme. The candidate has to qualify at least VIII standard for projects costing above Rs.10 lakh in the manufacturing sector and above Rs. 5 lakh in the business / service sector. Only new projects are considered for sanction under PMEGP.