- Indian Army embarked on a mission of empowering the army spouses, widows and their dependents by undertaking National Skill Qualification Framework (NSQF) accredited Certification courses in various skills under the Government Flagship scheme of Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) in year 2016. This initiative is being steered by National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC), Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) at national level. A common logo is being used by ASTCs across the country to reflect upon the partnership between Indian Army, NSDC and AWWA. Directorate of Indian Army Veterans (DIAV), AG’s Branch is the nodal agency for steering the skill development training on behalf of Indian Army to include approval of ASTC, facilitating accreditation, selection of civil professional training partner, compliance of guidelines and disbursement of funds.
- The one of its kind, Army Skill Training Centre (ASTC) was inaugurated on Aug 2016 at New Delhi and was designated as an Iconic Centre. 37 ASTCs have been established all over the country in last four years. ASTCs have currently subscribed for Short Term Training (STT) courses in five skill sectors namely, Beauty & Wellness, Apparel, IT, Food Processing and Telecom. Professional civil training partners are hired by ASTCs to provide qualified trainers for running the course as per NSDC guidelines. Complete funding for the course ranging from ₹ 12,000-₹16,000 is free of cost to the candidate and is paid under the PMKVY Scheme by the Govt. Induction Kit, training handbook and raw material are also provided to each candidate.
- Apart from the laid down course curriculum by respective Sector Skill Council on the skill sets required for the particular job role, sessions on Personality Development, English speaking, Entrepreneurship and Job Preparedness are also conducted for the overall benefit of all candidates. A Start up kit is also presented to successful candidates as a special provision for ASTCs by the Govt. Candidates are encouraged to seek a job on completion of the course, AWPO also assists in placements of willing candidates. All candidates who pass the assessment, are issued with a NSQF accredited certificate which is recognised all over the nation for seeking employment and enables them to seek MUDRA loan up to ₹ 10 lakh in addition to Life Insurance of ₹ 3 lakhs to each candidate for a period of three years.
- Nearly 12000 candidates have been enrolled and benefitted with this scheme since 2016 with nearly 300 candidates have confirmed starting own business/getting employment. The success stories of these candidates are an inspiration for others to emulate. It is desired that ASTC’s should be steering the mission of empowerment of our spouses and widows in times to come.
Present State of Training (as on 01 Sep 20)
The PMKVY scheme has completed its mandate on 31 Mar 20. MSDE is likely to announce the PMKVY 3 scheme shortly, fresh instructions, revision of job roles and creation of new ASTCs can be facilitated once the new scheme is announced. Meanwhile, nearly 94 batches in all ASTC have been suspended since 18 Mar 20 due to national lockdown because of COVID 19. Training is likely to resume from 21 Sep 20 after a gap of six months with some additional safety precautions for all candidates.
View List of ASTCs