Vocational Trainers Allege Exploitation by Recruitment Agencies in JK

“Private Agencies exploiting us, minting money”; Appeal LG admin to intervene

“Private Agencies exploiting us, minting money”; Appeal LG admin to intervene

 Srinagar, Aug 16(KNS): Vocational Trainers (VTs) in various schools across Jammu and Kashmir (JK) are crying foul over alleged exploitation by recruitment agencies.

Startling revelations have emerged, with a large number of VTs claiming that they are being coerced into enrolling in paid skill development courses, including those offered by the Sector Skill Councils (SSCs), under the pretense of JK Government making it mandatory for VTs, an excuse nullified by the Samagra Shiksha Department.

The JK Government has outsourced the Skill training to students in Schools by hiring Private Agencies. VTs said they are being paid 18,000 to 22,000 salaries.

They alleged that these agencies after paying them salaries force them to go for some paid certification courses  on the pretext that JK government has made it mandatory for them.

The situation has reached a boiling point with VTs from agency " LAQSH Job Skills Academy Pvt. Ltd." stepping forward to expose what they consider blatant exploitation.

Under the guise of complying with JK Government directives, these VTs allege that they are being pressured into enrolling in costly courses offered by the very agencies that employ them. “One day they pay us consolidated salaries without mandatory CPF and the other day they are being coerced to go for paid curses and Rs 8,000 to 12,000 are charged from  us,” said a VT.

Another VT, who chose to remain anonymous due to fear of repercussions, said, "It's disheartening to realize that agencies that are supposed to support us are instead using our vulnerability to their advantage. We are struggling to make ends meet with our meager salaries, and now they're pushing us into these expensive courses."

Another VT from Laqsh agency, who has been teaching for several years, expressed frustration, saying, "I've dedicated years to imparting skills to students, and now I find myself in a situation where I have to choose between financial strain and keeping my job.Click Here To Follow Our WhatsApp ChannelIt's a lose-lose situation for us."

He said to avoid getting trapped, the agency has disabled the link for registration of these courses and is collecting cash from VTs for registration to avoid online transaction for tax evasion and evidence tampering. 
The allegations have brought to light a distressing reality: VTs, already earning modest salaries ranging from 18,000 to 20,000 rupees per month, are facing additional financial burdens due to the alleged collaboration between agencies and SSCs.

The courses being imposed on them not only drain their earnings but also potentially jeopardize their positions if they fail to comply.

Educational experts and concerned citizens have voiced outrage over the alleged collusion between agencies and SSCs.

"The very purpose of these skill development programs is being undermined by these unethical practices. It is crucial to ensure that VTs are not coerced into unnecessary expenses that erode their already limited earnings," they said.

Project Director Samagra Shiksha Er Deep Raj Kanethia said they have not made any certification course compulsory for the VTs . He said no such directive has been issued and assured that the agencies will be debarred from doing so. “They cannot compel and will be debarred from doing so”

Attempt to contact  LAQSH Job Skills Academy Pvt. Ltd. Turned futile. The story will be updated online as and when the agency mentioned will respond.(KNS).

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