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Apprenticeship in India

The Apprentices Act, 1961 was enacted with the objective of regulating the program of training of apprentices in the industry by utilizing the facilities available therein for imparting on-the-job training. As the 1961 law was old and with changing times needed revamping – Government of India has brought about comprehensive reforms in the Apprenticeship Act in 2014 & the Apprenticeship Rules in 2015 to make apprenticeship more industry friendly.

Features of the act and key changes made are –
 
  • Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) & Ministry of Human Resource & Development (MHRD) are responsible for implementation of the Act.
  •  Any company or establishment with headcount >6 is eligible but it is Mandatory as per law for any company or establishment with headcount >40 to engage apprentices.
  •  An apprentice is paid consolidated monthly stipend, without statutory ESI and EPF contributions and deductions.
  •  An apprentice cannot be an employee of the organization – Section 18 of the Apprentices Act, 1961 stipulates that the apprentices are trainees and not workers. The provisions of any law with respect to labour shall not apply to or in relation to such apprentice.
  • Removal of prescriptive, quota based apprenticeship norms and the introduction of a flexible need-based band minimum 2.5% to a maximum of 10% of total headcount to be engaged.
  •  Introduction of Optional Trades under the apprenticeship programme, which shall be designed by industry. This will train the youth to become industry ready with workplace relevant skills.
  •  Including the service industry under the ambit of the act.
  •  Linking short term skill development programs and training to the apprenticeship programme.
  •  You can choose the apprentice you want – fully at liberty to follow the normal selection process.
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