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Dear sir,

We the Kashmiri students, pursuing studies in Dehradun, the capital city of the Indian state of Uttarakhand, are much worried about our families as we have no contact with them since last four days.

Due to ban on mobile service we are not able to connect with our family members.We are too much worried about our families. We are running out of money and we are not able to contact family due to phone gag.

We have completed our exam and we have to return home now but we don't have any contact with our family, moreover we don't have single penny in our pocket. We don't have even money for Transportation fare.

Now, we request Authorities to restore the  Mobile  services in Kashmir valley so that we can contact with our parents.


Nasir Khuehami,

Saleem Wani,

Iqbal Bhat 

Faheem Aslam.

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  • “The way to revolution through educated ones needs to stand out of the box”

Had education been only the runner for gross, it would had died an unobtrusive casualty but being the whole and sole pillar of debonair for generations to come its worth at net can never be projected. Be it in formal, moral or any other form, the veiled shine and masked gift of a being goes to toss until education upholds the candle till end of the tunnel.Education theatres its important role in the opening out of an individual, nurturing the intrinsic worth, broadening the mental picture and clearing the blurriness that might prevail otherwise, it is beyond doubt a combat force for all the tribulations. Understanding education in Kashmir requires traverse in the variance. It has been in crossroads as conflict takes its due toll on the same.  

The uprising from the school bags started after lopsided show of might against students in Pulwama, when students and their school bag literary became so heavily loaded critic for the state, that need for authoritarian vigil arose. The wrangle between the students and the paramilitary for seizure of the former’s freedom resulted in more than 60 students being injured. The occupying forces entered inside the campus and a full use of the might was on display that resulted in the further alienation of the already alienated ones. So students all over the region decided to resist and rest is known to one and all. From north to south via central every single institute of learning standed tall against the foyer and untenable use and might against the children.

This unfortunate pulwama incident where the state police trespassed into the campus and flexed their muscles acted as a tipping point for the contained anger of the children of conflict against agencies of the state. Ever since then Hundreds of school going children have suffered physically and mentally, their mental space has been dented to a far greater extent from where the counseling will hardly have any desired upshot. The bootlace and necktie role reversal from shining armor to slingshot, the book bag for enlighten to supporting the retort to the fury. They have put everything at stake and have no fear to hold back. Indubitable and powerful in uniforms, these school and college students have been in front of every plan of might be it pellets tear gas shells or bullets. The current generation of school and college students have grown up witnessing frisking, crackdowns, disappearances, summons to police stations and unprovoked killings, so the sentiment of being autonomous runs deep in this generation.

These protests were entirely bungled from the very start by the people at the helm of affairs, all they did was the same old chalked out plan to curb the dissent by the use of force. In all this mishandle, scores of the youth have been bruised by pellets and shells which has added much more to their baulk. The brutal use of force by the state against the future of the state has bankrupted the way to illumination. The youthful, opinionated children of conflict have been in the crossroads of conflict often delimited by the clatter of blazing guns and barred wires around. In its place for a resolution to grasp the estrangement from creating a split, the state acted in creating one between the Gen next and the state. The lack of political imagination of the elected govt has failed the populace and Govt of the day has taken shelter behind the security uniform. The mode of denial and managing the conflict rather solving has plagued Kashmir. The student protest was actually a break to make things better but the Govt of the day which has its scent as occupying force has lost occasion to espouse peace.

We were yet to come out of the miseries of the last summer which took away the sight of bright future and Govt of the day started to create new ways to darken the life of the children. That is a worrying trend as social order without inherited educated will die an appalling death. Youth has power to change thing at the centre but then with violence gripping damage is wholly of ours. We as a society can’t afford bloodshed as it smashes-up the capabilities of our young ones who could do wonders in resolving the Kashmir issue. High lightening the tyranny at gross through several other fronts will confront and corner the occupying forces. The pen is mightier than many thousand guns needs actual recognition among the future of the state.

Although the ultimate goal of the uprising among the college/ school going children remains in line with the other masses but their way can be much sophisticated and can bring wonders in resolving the long pending issue. They are the ones who have to contribute in sorting out the mess without any bloodbath and in line have to stop the hampering of their education. As forerunner of the valley their thinking towards deciphering the conflict should be out of the box, away from the traditional protests. Drafting novel Ideas and implementation of those strategic plans to get rid of conflict in the trodden terrain can help out. Let the sane voices in the rest of countryside get to know the ground realities IST hand rather than distorted facts from the TPR hungry new channels. The biased media has opened Pandora’s Box for the people of valley, atleast the various public medium if set up by students will make it happen for us to debate the ongoing leading which will certainly translate to the acceptance of the dispute by the occupying forces.              

On the other front the govt of the day which almost dashed away people to the non-negotiable point have to pass hurdles.  The mere enquires of Govt will bear neither has in past bore any fruits until action oriented tasks are placed on the ground. These investigating reports which are left for investigation sake need to put in proper action, book culprits who have trespassed and used might against the budding students to book. Pin your ears back to the grievances and address the dissent in the saner way rather than having muscular approach to everything.  Under no circumstances, should the future careers of the student community be allowed to get exploited or jeopardized in any manner.

They, have a crucial role in the process which will lead in accepting, grasping and then resolving the proportions of the conflict by the concerned. If and when this is done, Kashmir will be at peace. If, not then, Kashmir, in all probability, there will prevail periods of deceptive calmness and sudden violence which will move across generations to come.

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‘Skill building’ and ‘knowledge’ are quintessential for economic growth of any country in today’s world. More so for a country like India where 13 million youth are estimated to enter the job market annually. There is another reason too which makes ‘skill building’ an imperative for the growth of country’s economy. While the labour force in the industrialized world is expected to decline by 4%, in our country it will increase by 32% in 20 years time. This is an indicator that India is poised to become a hub for skilled labour force.Skill development is, therefore, an urgent priority for the government.Taking into account the estimated requirement of skilled manpower in future the government has set a target of creating 500 million strong skilled manpower by 2022.

The challenge is huje considering that so faronly 4.69 per cent of total work force in India has received any formal skill training. This is much lower than even some of the developing countries and  far behind the  developed nations where  the percentage  of skilled manpower ranges from 52 per cent in USA to as high as  96 per cent in South Korea.

In order todevelop a robust policy framework and programme of action for scaling and speeding up skill development efforts, NDA Government set up aseparate Ministry of Skill development and Entrepreneurship in December 2014. In addition, to fast track and upgrade existing skill development programmes, several new schemes have been initiated with timelines for achieving the set targets.

An ambitious skill development programmePradhan Mantri Kaushal VikasYojana was initiated in 2015.. Later PMKVY was approved for another  four years on 2ndof October last year with  a target to skill ten million youth  with greater focus on improving placement opportunities through high quality training .Under this Scheme, Training and Assessment fees are fully borne by the Government. The scheme being  implemented through the National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) envisages linking  aptitude, aspiration, and knowledge of the skilled workforce it creates with employment opportunities and demands in the market.


Another schemePradhan Mantri YUVA Yojanawas launched in November last year which is being implemented in association with Wadhwani Operating Foundation as its Knowledge Partner. On line Entrepreneurship Education  will be provided to  about 15 lakh students across the country through 3050 Project Institutes consisting of Institutions of Higher Learning; Schools; ITIs and Entrepreneurship Development Centres, both Government and Private. The Ministry would also provide financial assistance to these institutions for different activities under the Scheme. The five-year Scheme is expected to witness setting up of more than 23,000 enterprises thatwillcreate more than 2.30 lakh direct and indirect jobs in the country.The Scheme providing for financial assistance to both Government and Private Institutions would cover 84,000 students in the current fiscal.

National Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme

Apprenticeship Training is considered to be one of the most efficient ways to develop skilled manpower . It provides for an industry led, practice oriented, effective and efficient mode of formal training. This is first of the kind scheme that offers financial incentives to employers. Under the scheme ,twenty five percent of the prescribed stipend payable to an apprentice would be reimbursed to the employers directly by the  centre . 50 Lakh apprentices are expected to be trained by 2019-20  under this initiative by working pro-actively with the industry including MSME.


It was in the 1950’s that Industrial Training Institutes were established under the Craftsman Training Scheme by the Centre  forimparting skills in various vocational trades to meet the manpower requirements for technology andindustrialgrowth of the country.In the period 2014 to 2017 , 3342 new ITIs  have been set up increasing  the seating capacity to 5,85,284.The ITI have helped lakhs of youth  earn their livelihood  through  employment or starting  their own work.

A scheme to up-grade Government ITIs into Model ITIs  was initiated in December 2014 . The  main objective was to develop a benchmark for industry oriented ITI which would serve as a model for other ITIs and would also raise dignity of ITI education. These Model ITIs were to establish links with the Industrial clusters in their vicinity to enable them  to function as a solution provider to the cluster group.Gunjan Gautam  who was trained motor vehicle  mechanicin 2014 from Govt. Modal ITI Nalagarh District Solan, Himachal Pradesh is now  a proprietor in dealership venture having branchs at Hamirpur, Nadaun and Jawalaji in Himachal Pradesh and over  60  Mechanics/Workers work  under his establishment.

 In all 25 ITI  were identified  for  upgradation as model ITI.

With regard to a scheme for  Up-gradation of 1396 Government ITIs through Public Private Partnership(PPP), a total of 1227 Govt. ITIs have been covered in 31 States and Union Territories.  Government has also initiated  several  other incentive driven schemes including awards for giving  push to skilling in India to match  international standards.  

India is one of the youngest nations in the world . More than 62 per cent  of its population  is in the working age group  of (15-59 years), and more than 54 percent of its total population below 25 years of age .Its  population in the 15-59 age group is expected to expand  over the next decade .This is  in contrast to developed countries like USA, Europe and Japan   where the average age  would be in the range 45 to 49.  As pointed out earlier. India could reap this demographic dividend in  a big way but the  challenge is  to equip its workforce with employable skills and knowledge  for the economic growth of our country.


*Author is a New Delhi based independent Journalist and writes regularly in Newspapers on social sector issues. Views expressed in the article are author’s personal.