With a view to imparting skills in various vocational trades and to meet the requirement of skilled manpower for fuelling industrial growth in the country, in 1950 the Government initiated the Craftsmen Training Scheme (CTS) and about 50 Industrial Training Institutes (ITI) had been set up in the country. Later, several private ITIs were established. In the year 1980, there were 831 ITIs, which rose to 6906 in 2009. In the last decade, the number has reached 13,353 ITIs, of which 11,000 are Private, while growing at the rate of 15%. Hence, there has been a huge expansion in the ITI system. These ITIs provide a seating capacity of 21.94 lakh.
However, mushrooming of ITIs have not correspondingly helped in supplying increased skilled manpower in the country. Quality has suffered in our pursuit of quantity. On several occasions Quality Council of India (QCI) had compromised with the quality of affiliation and accreditation process. In many cases, QCI had not followed the prescribed norms in respect of building infrastructure, machinery and equipment, faculty/staff and also the general safety norms had not been adhered to. It was observed that the trainees from these institutes with poor level of skills are not as per the industry standards. A huge volume of public grievances and court cases indicate that QCI is not functioning in a proper manner.
In some cases, approval was given even without proper building for conducting classes was in place. It was also found that two ITIs were run from the same premises. In some cases, ITIs were run from tin sheds.
However, after receiving severe comments on the state of affairs of ITIs in the country the Government has taken an initiative to review existing Civil Infrastructure norms and affiliation procedure for setting of new ITIs in future. These include civil infrastructural norms Building Completion Certificate (BCC) and Occupancy Certificate, fire and safety norms and greater involvement of State Government. As per records available, 385 ITIs have been de-affiliated by DGE&T in last 5 years.
The government has also decided to do the grading and star rating of the ITIs to improve their performance. The objective of conducting grading exercise for ITIs is to provide Star Rating to the performing institutes and give an opportunity to the institutes lagging behind in some of the parameters, to improve upon. The government is aiming to identify at least 500 ITIs to become World Class training institutes which are recognized for their training standards and practices, not just in India but abroad. These ITIs will act as model institutes for others to emulate and will provide strategic direction to industrial training in India. In addition, students of such ITIs shall be given preference for training opportunities outside India through various collaborative efforts of Government of India with other countries. The rating of these best institutes will be declared and displayed separately to support their improved positioning in skills ecosystem.