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Sonu Sood aims to help 2 crore migrants find employment, ties up with Schoolnet arm

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MUMBAI: Actor Sonu Sood, who helped migrant workers reach home during the Covid-19 related lockdown, aims to help at least two crore people get employed over the next five years through his new initiative, Pravasi Rozgar, he told ET.

Sood launched the initiative to support migrant workers in getting jobs by providing a platform to connect job seeking youth to the companies for the entry level blue collar jobs. Has tied up with Learnet Skills, a joint venture between Schoolnet India ((formerly IL&FS Education and Technology Services) and National Skill Development Corporation, to provide handholding and mentoring support to these individuals.

“Everytime I sent someone home, they would tell me we will come back if we get work.They would call me from their villages and say ‘sir kaam dila do’ (please help in getting a job). I realised that there was a gap in their skill sets and the jobs that were available. Most of them did not have access to information on jobs either,” Sood said.

Sood, an engineer by qualification, reached out to friends and connected with professionals from skill training, technology and even non-government organisations to set up this platform.

The initiative includes a website which will act as a ‘Skill Exchange’ which will digitally connect job providers with the job seekers. On one hand, it will collate data of job seekers, help them create a profile, assess their skills and if needed train them; on the other hand, the team is reaching out to companies across sectors to assess their job requirements and get commitments from them.

“We have commitments for almost one lakh jobs in hand from companies like Amazon, Flipkart, Havells India, Motherson Sumi, among others. A total of 450 employers from different sectors are on board,” said RCM Reddy, managing director and chief executive officer of Schoolnet.

‘Pravasi Rozgar’ will tap into Learnet Skills’ physical centers to reach out to migrant workers. Workers to counsel and train them. The initiative has also set up call centres to help them remotely.

“We have been training people and helping them get jobs. But the Covid-19 experience has to some extent broken the confidence between the employers and employees. That’s where the trust these migrant workers have on Sonu Sood helps us connect with them. We are leveraging on the strength of each other,” Reddy said.

The initiative will use partnership with the local community based organisations, NGOs, Panchayats, government supported entities like Common Service Centres for community outreach.

“There is an immediate need for helping these people with jobs so I launched this initiative on my own. I have roped in professionals to help, who are giving their time and resources driven by altruism,” Sood said.

In the first 24 hours of its launch, the initiative received 50,000 requests from migrants through the website (www.pravasirojgar.com) and call centres (+1800121664422).

Sood said that the platform will be scaled up in terms of numbers of people that it can reach out to and the scope of work.

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