Drivers’ Training, Testing and Skill Building of Unemployed Youth by Tata Motors and Tata Trusts in Silchar

Worldwide, the transport sector has emerged as the biggest employer: one commercial vehicle provides employment to 13.3 people; a car provides employment to 5.3 people. It is believed that the vitality and growth of the Indian economy depend on the road transportation and this sector also opens a door of opportunity for unemployed youth with relatively fewer educational qualifications.  To sustain business growth the transport industry which needs drivers in the future, aims to create employment opportunities for unemployed youth.

On the safety side, if we look at the Indian scenario, a large number of road accidents take place on roads resulting in more than one lakh deaths every year. The causative analysis of various road accidents studies carried out in the past, infers that a majority of road accidents occur due to the driver’s fault. The report indicates that nearly 80% of all road accidents are due to the fault of the driver. The sector demands multiple skills at various levels such as driving skills, including safety procedures, technology skills, industry understanding and managerial skills and the current vocational training framework for the sector is not equipped to cater to the widening skill gap at a rapid pace.  Despite having adequate provisions in Commercial Motor Vehicle Rules which directly as well as indirectly helps in ensuring good driving skills and knowledge of rules of road regulation among drivers, there is an urgent need to impart driving training, both theoretical and practical to existing and aspiring drivers.

Vocational training through channels, such as apprenticeship, on-the-job training, and financial and technical support to industrial training institutes, and the provision of decent employment opportunities are the backbone of the skill development programs of advanced countries. In India, a need has also been felt for setting standards and monitoring driving training and issuing Driving Licenses based on an objective scientific process of testing skills. Keeping this is context, the professional Driver Training and Skills Institutes have been established across the country by some of the state government on a public-private partnership (PPP) mode.

Tata Motors under the Tata GRAM III flagship program has the objective of providing training to local youth and motor drivers who will not only fulfill the increasing demand of trained drivers but also help in improving the living standards of the poor and underprivileged. Tata Motors will work with the National Institute for Automotive Inspection Maintenance & Training (NIAIMT) for a year for which the Tata Trusts will support the cost involved in training of 1000 youth. The training which is residential based will consists of:

  1. Heavy Vehicle Driver Training Course – HMV (18 working days)
  2. Light Motor Vehicle Driver Training course – LMV (28 working days)

Centre for Microfinance and Livelihood along with NIAIMT, Silchar will be the implementing agency for the program.