Coronavirus lockdown | Uttar Pradesh launches skill mapping of returning workers to provide jobs within State

Migrant workers headed towards Uttar Pradesh huddled in a truck. File   | Photo Credit: A.M. Faruqui

The plight of the inter-State worker returning home has loomed large over the crisis caused by the COVID-19, with Uttar Pradesh being one of the first States to undertake skill mapping and announce policies to try and assure employment to returning workers within the State. It had launched a skill mapping exercise of all returning workers to get an assessment of what employment can be provided in situ. The results of this exercise are trickling in and provide an interesting picture.

Through affidavits placed before the Supreme Court, it is now clear that more than 75% of all Shramik expresses were taking these workers home to Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. Uttar Pradesh, according to the State government’s own undertaking, has received 26 lakh of its workers back from where they had migrated for work.

“Of these 26 lakh people, we have completed the skill mapping exercise for 18 lakh,” said a senior source in the Uttar Pradesh government.

According to the figures made available to The Hindu, construction workers comprised the largest skill set with nearly 16 lakh people having been employed in that sector. This includes contract labour, those with skills regarding specific works like flooring, painting and carpentry. An additional 55,000 people have experience in furniture and fittings and interior decoration. “Over 10,000 people previously employed as drivers have returned as have 5,000 and more information technology electronics technicians (data operators and low level jobs) and around 6,000 home appliance repairmen,” said the source.

Around 2,000 technicians related to the automobile field have also returned home along with 1,300 beauticians, paramedics, pharma assistants and handicraft workmen and carpet weavers. The effort, say government officials, is to conclude the mapping fast and register them under the Kaamgaar Shramik Kalyan Aayog set up for them and put in place some insurance policies as well.

According to Minister for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) in the State, Siddharth Nath Singh, “The MSME Ministry has entered into four MoUs with industry associations like FICCI, Laghu Udyog Bandho, Indian Industry Association and NADRECO for providing jobs to 11 lakh skilled and semi skilled workers. The first step to that is the skill mapping exercise,” he said.

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Printable version | Oct 20, 2021 10:39:48 AM |

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