This is being suggested by NITI Aayog to ramp up the popularity of the National Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme (NAPS) both among candidates and reduce the financial burden on companies. The finance ministry has received a proposal to increase apprenticeship stipends from the current maximum of Rs 1,500 to Rs 5,000 or in other words from a maximum of 25% to 50% of the monthly stipend payout to candidates. The proposal is said to receive consideration after the general elections when Skill India Mission 2.0 gets rolled out.

A senior official from the MSDE said on condition of anonymity, “The government has to decide on its priorities and money can be found. Apprenticeship training is a must, but with the current rate of reimbursement not too many employers are coming forward to provide apprenticeship training as it calls for the additional financial burden on them.”

The NAPS has seen very low uptake since its launch in 2016; at best 3 lakh apprentices as against the government’s ambition to engage 50 lakh apprentices by 2020. The Rs 10,000 crore budget to bear the cost of reimbursements under the NAPS has also been heavily underutilised due to lack of active industry participation.

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