Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram on Monday launched an interactive website aimed to facilitate job prospects for 40,000 youths from Jammu and Kashmir over a period of five years.

The website - www.nsdcindia.org/udaan - will be run by the National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC). It will act as a platform to bring the unemployed youth of Jammu and Kashmir in touch with corporates seeking talented workforce.

Eight corporate houses, including HCL, Wipro BPO and Future Group, also signed an agreement with the NSDC in the presence of Mr. Chidambaram, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah and Prime Minister's Economic Advisory Council Chairman C Rangarajan who headed the expert group to formulate a job plan in this regard.

"We are facilitating a unique programme that will be run by NSDC and the corporate sector. There are four firms (under the MoU) from the software sector, a couple (firms) in retail and others in services sector. This is a good beginning," Mr. Chidambaram said as he unveiled the website.

The youth of Jammu and Kashmir should be encouraged to take jobs in other states. The success of this initiative lies in the hands of NSDC, corporates and the youth, he said.

Chief Minister Omar Abdullah said it was an important step in increasing more employment opportunities for the youth of the State. "The youth in my state are devoid of skill sets...hence a scheme like Udaan assumes importance. This is a tentative start from today which will grow further," he said while lauding the corporates for showing interest in the initiative.