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In a year, Labour Dept alone registered over 84,000 unemployed youth in JK

Srinagar, Aug 10: The J&K Labour and Employment Department has registered a whopping 84,516 unemployed youths during the last financial year including in 39,195 Kashmir division and 45,321 in Jammu division. The data was revealed during a review meeting of the department chaired by Advisor to Governor K Vikay Kumar on Friday. Kumar stressed on the officials of Labour and Employment to be more proactive and work with extra zeal for the welfare and empowerment of the working class to enable them to play their role in nation building. Advisor said the government is “committed” to the welfare of the working class and to uplift their socio-economic status in the society and various welfare schemes are in place for the purpose that include Provident fund, Medical insurance, a package of Welfare schemes for building and construction workers, Rehabilitation of Child Labourers and Bonded labourers, conciliation between employees and employers in case of a dispute etc. He asked the Department of Employment to be more proactive to provide free coaching to the students for civil services besides providing career counseling in various colleges of the state. Meeting was informed that there are 698 Self Help Groups registered with the department involving 3147 engineers. Officials said 1282 works have been allotted to these SHGs and Rs 115.89 crore have been allotted to the SHGs. He was informed that the group so constituted shall necessarily have 40 percent of the members with degree in civil, mechanical, electrical, architectural engineering and 60 percent can have degree or diploma in any branch of engineering and are entitled to works upto the limit of Rs 50 lakhs for initial two years. Advisor asked the officers to regularly monitor the performance of the SHGs. Regarding Seed Capital Fund Scheme (SCFS), it was given out that the EDI is implementing agency of the program and as per guidelines the prospective entrepreneurs are to be provided trainings and later with seed capital equivalent to 35 percent of the project cost upto a maximum of Rs 4 lakhs for under graduates, Rs 5 lakh for graduates, Rs 6.50 lakhs for post-graduates and Rs 10 lakhs for professional/ technical graduates. Meeting was informed that in the last Financial year, EDI assisted in establishing 662 units in the state and Rs 3.63 crores were spent while an outlay of Rs 37.56 crores have been set for the current financial year. Under Youth Start-up Loan Scheme, it was given out EDI assisted in establishing 107 units and Rs 2.34 crores have been spend for the same during the previous financial year. During the meeting, Nahida Soz informed that the Women’s Development Corporation spend 36 crores and assisted in establishing 20 profit generating units under Women Entrepreneurship Programme. Advisor was further informed that during the last financial year, 30 job fairs were conducted at various districts in which 745 youth were offered jobs in various private sector companies, besides general awareness regarding various job avenues and Self Employment Schemes. While reviewing the performance of the department of Labour, advisor urged the officers to make the department more vibrant and active so that the unemployed young generation and the workers are benefitted. He said the department of Labour is the custodian of the rights of the laborers, workers and employees including the government and private employees. He said the officers should be aware of their responsibilities towards this vital section of the society and work for the betterment of them. He also asked the department to make the registration process more convenient and user friendly so that the workers don’t face hardships for registering themselves. The meeting was further informed that the department of labour disposes off at least 1126 cases during the last financial year under different acts including Workmen Compensation Act, Payment of Wages Act, Industrial Dispute Act, Minimum Wages Act, Payment of Gratuity Act while 1254 cases are still lying pending including the pendency from the previous years. Officials further informed that the department conducted 908 inspections to various factories under Factory Act during the previous fiscal and launched prosecution against 22 offenders. The department also conducted 23558 inspections under different acts and launched prosecution against 1625 offenders while 1151 convictions also took place during the financial year 2017-18. The meeting discussed threadbare the issues and the bottlenecks that come in the way of the proper implementation of various welfare programs.