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CSDC Felicitates Construction Champions, Worldskills 2022 Participants

As part of Vishwakarma Day celebrations, Construction Skill Development Council (CSDC) felicitated the winners of the Indiaskills competition at a convocation and felicitation ceremony held in Gurugram. Several other construction champions, who have completed their skilling and upskilling training programs, were also presented certificates in the presence of industry stakeholders. It is appropriate that CSDC felicitates construction champions on the birthday of Lord Vishwakarma, who is revered as the deity of architects and those who work with tools and instruments.

CSDC conducts skill competitions at the district, state, and national levels for various trades, which culminate in the Indiaskills competition. The national winners at Indiaskills 2021 were Chheetar Sen (concrete construction work), Mohit Prakash (concrete construction work), Mohd Monish Kamal (bricklaying), Amit Kumar Singh (plastering & drywall systems), Keval Solanki (digital construction) and Sanjiv Kumar Sabavath (wall & floor tiling). 

These six finalists will represent India at the Worldskills Competition 2022 special edition, being organised across several countries following the cancellation of the event in Shanghai, China in the wake of Covid-19.

“Skilling of workers is essential if the Indian economy is to reach its goal of $5 trillion. It is equally important to give workers due respect for their labours. This can happen only when the workers are duly registered under EPF and ESI Acts and their workplaces are made compliant with the prescribed safety rules,” said Sanjay Kumar, IAS, additional secretary with the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, while speaking at the convocation and felicitation ceremony. He applauded CSDC’s efforts of increasing engagement with the industry for achieving wider coverage of workers under various skilling programs. 

To put in context, the construction sector is the largest employer in India after agriculture, engaging over 51 million workers and contributing 9 per cent to the country’s GDP. Indian construction was the second largest recipient sector of FDI in 2020-21 and is expected to emerge as the third largest construction market globally by 2025. 

The CSDC conclave also saw the signing of an MOU with infrastructure major L&T, for providing skilling, apprenticeship, and job opportunities to construction workers in various trades. 

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“It is construction workers, besides health workers, who took the entire country to safety during the Covid-19 pandemic. They were instrumental in building a vast network of hospitals, vaccination logistics and other covid-related infrastructure within a very short span, which was needed urgently to keep our people safe. We should salute these fearless craftsmen, who put themselves on the frontlines of the pandemic in service to the nation,” said R Ganesan, head of L&T Corporate Centre, on the occasion of the MOU signing.

Ganesan also highlighted the importance of soft skills, such as communication and leadership, in the career growth of construction workers. “The professional environment of construction workers is becoming global and soft skills will provide them with a competitive edge. Our training should also become gender neutral, as most of the operations can be handled by men and women equally. It is quite encouraging to note that CSDC felicitates construction champions and helps transform their talent into skills through competitions, campaigns, and mentorship.” 

Reminding that the infrastructure pipeline in India was going to become even stronger in the coming years, Ganesan advised CSDC to focus on safety, and expedite basic certification in the interest of workers’ growth. India Investment Grid, a Government of India initiative, hosts the National Infrastructure Pipeline (NIP) and lists 6,562 projects across 655 districts worth $113.46 billion. 

During the conclave, CSDC chief executive officer Narendra Deshpande presented Prayas, the council’s awareness campaign for highlighting the importance of skills in the lives of workers. The audio-visual campaign was launched in July this year and exhorts workers to ‘own a qualified skill set’, which could be an answer to enhanced earnings and self-fulfilment. 

The five-episode campaign explains the stages of construction and specific skills that are required at each stage. It also showcases workers who have been able to transform their lives through skill building and continuous assessment, moving from being day-wagers to supervisors, and yet aspiring for more.

“As CSDC felicitates construction champions, it sends out a message that craftsmen only can give shape to the vision and dreams of designers and creators. At CSDC we are committed to taking this message far and wide, so that our workers benefit from skilling, and contribute to making India the skill capital of the world,” Deshpande said.

CSDC represents the construction sector at National Skill Development Corporation, which is the execution arm of the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship. 

The schedule for construction industry skill competitions at Worldskills 2022 is as follows:

19—22 October (Bordeaux, France) 

  • Plastering & Drywall system

3—6 November (South Tyrol, Italy) 

  • Wall & Floor Tiling
  • Digital Construction

24—26 November (Salzburg, Austria) 

  • Bricklaying
  • Concrete Construction Work
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