Union minister Nitin Gadkari on Wednesday highlighted the need for policy measures to create jobs in rural areas and check migration to cities for employment. The minister also called for a detailed study to find out ways to skill people in tribal, agriculture and rural sectors, pointing out that skilled manpower was the biggest requirement in the country.

Gadkari said”Our country’s biggest problem is unemployment…Another issue in front of us is migration. People are moving from villages to cities in search of jobs. Once (Mahatma) Gandhi said 85% of the population is in villages. Now percentage wise it has come down to 60 per cent. We will have to find out ways to provide them job opportunities in their villages so they don’t need to leave their homes. And keeping this in mind, making policy will be useful for the country.”

While suggesting some ideas that can help create jobs, Gadkari said in transport there is a requirement of 22 lakh drivers and if driving training schools are opened then a lot of people will be benefitted.

He further said more than 25 varieties of honey are produced in the country which can be used in manufacturing of biscuits and other bakery products, there by letting the farmer getting extra income.

Nagpur oranges are already being used by Mother Dairy to produce ‘orange burfi’ sweet, a product he said is always out of stock.

The packaging industry can also help in promoting local products such as Madhubani paintings from Bihar and silk products from Varanasi in international markets.

“The country’s MSME sector has huge potential to create new job opportunities, there is a need to identify the areas where people can be skilled and given jobs. Country’s total 29 per cent growth/GDP comes from MSME sector, 49 per cent export is from MSME sector, till now 11 crore employment opportunities have been created, he said.

The minister also asked big companies across sectors to run skill development programmes and hire people according to their skills.

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