Odisha: A Beacon of Excellence and Youth Empowerment

In a remarkable achievement that underscores the transformative impact of the Skilled in Odisha programme, the state has once again demonstrated its commitment to empowering youth with vocational excellence and skill development. Competing against hundreds of skilled youth from across India in the prestigious India Skills competition, Odisha has emerged as a frontrunner, leading the medal tally with the highest number of laurels.

This milestone not only highlights the effectiveness of the Skilled In Odisha initiative, but also sets a benchmark for other states to emulate.

The India Skills competition, known for its rigorous standards and intense competition saw participants from various states showcasing their proficiency in a wide array of trades and skills. Odisha’s stellar performance in this national skill championship is a testament to the state’s robust skill development programs. The competitors from Odisha exhibited exceptional talent, dedication, and professionalism, reflecting the high standards of training imparted through the various programmes under Odisha Skill Development Authority. For the second time in a row, Odisha’s success reinforces the program’s efficacy.

In 2021, Odisha secured 51 medals, propelling it to the top spot in the medal tally. This year, with 51 medals, including 17 Gold, 14 Silver, 9 Bronze and 12 Medallions of Excellence, Odisha has again showcased the potential and capability of its youth on a national stage. Competing against 900 participants from 30 states and union territories, Odisha’s contingent of 64 competitors excelled in 48 skill events, with 51 competitors emerging victorious. The results, announced on May 19, 2024, highlighted the outstanding performance of Odisha’s youth.

The success of Odisha in the India Skills competition can be attributed to several key factors, such as boot camps, comprehensive training programs and state-of-the-art training centers. The Skilled in Odisha campaign offers a holistic approach to vocational training, encompassing both technical skills and soft skills. This all-round training ensures that the youth are not only job-ready but also equipped to excel in their respective fields.

With world-class infrastructure and training facilities, Odisha provides an environment conducive to learning and skill development. These centers are equipped with the latest tools and technologies, enabling students to gain hands-on experience and stay abreast of industry standards.

Notably, girls from Odisha broke the glass ceiling by winning medals in traditionally male-dominated skills such as Welding and Plumbing & Heating. Kirteeparna Sadangi, a Gold medalist in Plumbing & Heating and a student of CV Raman Global University, expressed her excitement about representing India at the World Skills Competition in Lyon, France. “I am excited to represent India during World Skills 2024, and I am not going to stop my preparation for it,” she said, highlighting her dedication and perseverance.

“After winning Gold in Odisha Skills I was actively attending the boot camp in Delhi where I was the only girl among all 13 competitors in Plumbing & Heating skill. That boot camp has helped me practice & gain confidence to perform my best in the national level. It makes my parents very happy to watch me in the first position amongst tough competitors of India,” she added.

Odisha’s leading position in the medal tally at the India Skills competition is a source of immense pride and inspiration. The state’s competitors excelled in various categories, including information technology, welding, carpentry, and fashion technology, among others. Their achievements not only bring laurels to the state but also serve as a beacon of hope and aspiration for other young aspirants.

Kamini Kumari Ram, a Gold medalist in Welding and a student of CV Raman Global University, Bhubaneswar, shared her journey from a Bronze winner in the Odisha Skills 2021 edition to achieving Gold at India Skills 2024. “Competing against 22 participants looked tough initially, but my focus on winning Gold drove me to my destination,” said Kamini, underscoring her determination and hard work.

Competitors have won 17 gold in Bakery, Bricklaying, CNC Milling, CNC Turning, Electronics, Health & Social Care, Industry 4.0, Mobile Application Development, Plumbing & Heating, Restaurant Service, Robot Systems Integration, Water Technology, Renewable Energy, Electrical Installations & Welding.

The milestone achieved by the Skilled in Odisha campaign is just the beginning. The state is committed to continuing its efforts to nurture talent and provide opportunities for skill development. As more youth get trained and participate in national and international competitions, Odisha is poised to become a hub of skilled professionals, contributing to the state’s economic growth and development.

Expressing his happiness over Odisha’s performance, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik congratulated the winners and encouraged them to continue their hard work to bring laurels to the state and the country at the World Skills level. “The dedication, hard work, and triumphs of the participants have made the entire state proud. May they keep shining and inspiring all with remarkable achievements,” he said.

Chairperson of the Odisha Skill Development Authority, Alka Misra, remarked, “Congratulations Team Odisha, for achieving exceptional results in the #Indiaskills2024. Odisha topped the medals tally by a comprehensive margin and proved Skilled In Odisha as the best in the country. It’s a proud moment for the achievers and a day of glory for the state.”

The stellar performance of Odisha at India Skills 2024 not only highlights the state’s commitment to skill development but also sets a new benchmark for future competitions, inspiring more youth to excel and break barriers. As Odisha continues to lead by example, it paves the way for a skilled and empowered India.

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