As many as 70,000 youth have benefited from this scheme till date and efforts are on to cover maximum youth under its ambit and the conditions for availing benefits under the scheme have been significantly liberalized, the state government spokesman said.

Now the youth having passed middle school examination and aged between 16 years and 36 years are eligible to avail benefit under this scheme and the condition of registration in the employment exchange for at least two years has also been waived off.

Further, the minimum educational requirement has also been waived off for training in skills like masonry, carpentry, blacksmith, plumbing, etc.

The state government has now decided to bring BSc Nursing course under the fold of Skill Development Allowance to provide relief to thousand of girls pursuing BSc Nursing courses in Government and Private Nursing Institutions in the State.

Most of the skill development courses can be completed in three months to two years and the allowance is being given to unemployed youth whose family income is below Rs 2 lakh per annum.

Bank loans up to Rs 1.50 lakh would be available at interest rate of 4 per cent after completion of skill training, if the trained youth are inclined to start their own self-employed ventures.
    
If an unemployed youth intends to take up self employment then he could apply for loan to a bank or to the Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribe, and Other Backward Classes Corporations.
    
The Himachal Pradesh Government is providing an interest subvention of 4 per cent up to project cost of Rs 1.50 lakh for next five years.

"Since over 90 per cent of our population lives in rural areas, the stress is being laid on upgrading skills of rural youth and over 8,000 Rural Youth belonging to BPL category would be covered under the National Rural Livelihood Mission and 5,000 youth from the urban area would be covered under the National Urban Livelihood Mission during the current financial year," an official spokesman said.

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