Overseas Employment Corporation turns out to be damp squib

Rs 13 Lakh Spent On Travel, Salary; No Youth Got Job Under ‘Flagship’ Program



Srinagar,Nov 1: Despite spending lakhs of rupees on creation of much-hyped Overseas Employment Corporation (OEC) which was supposed to ensure jobs for youth outside the country, the Government has failed to provide employment to even a single person under the flagship program during the past two years.
 Official information accessed by Greater Kashmir reveals that around Rs 13 lakh were spent by the government on salary, travel, accommodation and other facilities provided to the corporation officials in and outside state during 2011-12.
 The expenditure included more than Rs 5.5 lakh as Travelling Allowance (TA), Rs 3.6 lakh as rent, Rs 2.71 lakh as salary, Rs 21,435 as OE and Rs 10,807 as telephone bill during 2011-12.
 “The spending must have grown to over Rs 16 lakh as of now,” said an official. 
 The Director Employment Department is the ex-officio Managing Director (MD) of the OEC while some other officials from the department at division and district levels are too working as ex-officio employees of the Corporation.
 However, the General Manager Marketing, OEC posted at New Delhi, is working as an employee of the body which was designated as recruiting agency after its registration with the Ministry of Indian Overseas Affairs in December 2011. 
 An official said around 2500 youth -2000 from Kashmir and 500 from Jammu- have registered with the Corporation.  Most of them are from engineering and medical backgrounds.
 Each youth, based on his qualification, is required to pay Rs 250 to Rs 500 as registration fee. The Corporation has so far collected more than Rs 7 lakh as fee from aspiring youth.
 “But no youth has been provided job under the program,” said the official.
 The Corporation was claimed by the government as a “landmark initiative” under the Sher-e-Kashmir Employment and Welfare Program for Youth (SKEWPY).
 Under the initiative the Employment Counseling Centers set up at the district level are tasked to collect the data about unemployed professionals.
 The Corporation through its New Delhi based office is mandated to tie up with the outside Governments and private companies for recruitment of the youth.
 “There is no problem as far as data collection is concerned,” said a source. “But there is no forward movement on recruitment front.”
 According to an official survey J&K has around six lakh unemployed youth including a large number of jobless professionals.
 An official said in August 2011 following a visit of a delegation from Saudi Arabia to J&K around 17 doctors were recruited in the gulf country.
 However, the placements were ensured through Overseas Development and Employment Promotion Consultant of Kerala.
 Officials apprehend that the program would face challenges in meeting the demands at international level due to lack of facilities in the state to polish the expertise of the youth coming from different technical backgrounds.
  “The whole idea of the Corporation is still at conceptual stage,” said the official.
 Minister for Employment Abdul Gani Malik while admitting that no person was provided job through OEC so far said the establishment of the Corporation was a “tedious task.”
 “We will now start looking for jobs for our youth outside state and abroad and by the end of this year we expect that a good percentage of our youth will be placed through the Corporation,” Malik said.

Lastupdate on : Thu, 1 Nov 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 1 Nov 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 2 Nov 2012 00:00:00 IST

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