Craftsmen Training Scheme (CTS)

The Directorate General of  Training (DGT) (erstwhile DGE&T, Ministry of Labor and Employment) in the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Government of India initiated Craftsmen Training Scheme (CTS) in 1950 by establishing about 50 Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) for imparting skills in various vocational trades to meet the skilled manpower requirements for technology and industrial growth of the country. The second major phase of increase in ITIs came with the oil-boom in West-Asia and export of skilled manpower to that region from India. Several new private ITIs were established in 1980’s in southern states mostly in Kerala, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh, etc. from where trained craftsmen found placement mainly in Gulf countries. In 1980, there were 830 ITIs and the number rose to 1900 ITIs in 1987. During 1990’s, the growth of ITIs had been steep and presently there are over 10,750 ITIs (2275 in Govt. & 8475 in Private Sector) having a total seating capacity of 15.22 lakhs. Under the constitution of India, Vocational training is the concurrent subject of both Central and State Governments. The development of training schemes at National level, evolution of policy, laying of training standards, norms, conducting of examinations, certification, etc. are the responsibilities of the Central Government, whereas the implementation of the training schemes largely rests with the State Govts./UT Administrators. The Central Govt. is advised by the National Council of Vocational Training (NCVT), a tripartite body having representatives from employers, workers and Central/State Governments. Similar Councils termed as State Councils for Vocational Training are constituted for the same purpose by the respective State Governments at state levels.

Trade Syllabus

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Apprenticeship Training Scheme (ATS)


Development of human resource is crucial for the industrial development of any nation. Up-gradation of skills is an important component of Human Resource Development. Training imparted in institutions alone is not sufficient for acquisition of skills and needs to be supplemented by training at the workplace. The Apprentices Act, 1961 was enacted with the prime objective to utilize fully the facilities available in industry for imparting practical training with a view to meeting the requirements of skilled manpower for industry. Initially, the Act covered the apprenticeship training for the trade Apprentices and subsequently amended in 1973, 1986 and 2014 to bring the Graduates, Technician, Technician (Vocational) and Optional Trade Apprentices respectively under its purview.

Apprentices Act, 1961 was enacted with the following objectives :-

  • To regulate the program of training of apprentices in the industry so as  to conform to the syllabi, period of training etc. as laid  down by  the  Central   Apprenticeship Council; and
  • To utilize fully  the  facilities available in industry for imparting practical training with a view to  meeting the  requirements  of skilled manpower for industry.


  • Directorate General of Training under Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship monitors the implementation of the Apprentices Act in respect of  Trade Apprentices in the Central Government  Undertakings &  Departments and establishments operating business 4 or more states through six Regional   Directorates    of Apprenticeship  Training (RDAT) located at   Chennai, Faridabad, Hyderabad, Kanpur, Kolkata, & Mumbai.
  • State Apprenticeship Advisers are responsible for implementation of the Act in respect of Trade Apprentices    in   State   Government   Undertakings/ Departments and Private Establishments.
  • Department of Education in the  Ministry of  Human Resource Development is responsible for  monitoring the implementation  of  the Act in respect of Graduate, Technician  &  Technician (Vocational) Apprentices. This monitoring is done   through four  Boards of Apprenticeship Training located at Chennai, Kanpur, Kolkata and Mumbai.


  • It is an apex statutory body. It is tripartite by constitution with members from Government both Central and States/UTs, Employers etc.
  • It advises the Government  on laying down of policies and prescribing norms & standards in respect of Apprenticeship Training.

Fields of apprenticeship training

Apprenticeship training can be provided to apprentices both in designated and optional trades.
(i)      Designated trade
          Designated trade means any trade or occupation as notified by the Government. 

(ii)     Optional trade
          Optional trade means any trade or occupation decided by an employer. 

Categories of apprentices
There are five categories of apprentices:
1.  Trade apprentices
2.  Graduate apprentices
3.  Technician apprentices
4.  Technician (Vocational) apprentices
5.  Optional trade apprentices


  • It is obligatory on the part of employers having manpower strength 40 or more and having requisite training infrastructure as laid down in the Act, to engage apprentices.
  • Employer shall engage of apprentices in a band of 2.5% to 10% of total manpower strength of the establishments including contractual staff.
  • The total engagements of apprentices in the band with of 2.5% to 10% include all categories of apprentices engaged by establishment.
  • The establishments /Employers can decide the categories of apprentices and trade(s) in which the apprentices to be engaged depending upon the facility available with them for imparting on-the- job training/ practical training at his workplace. 


  • The minimum rate of stipend per month payable to trade apprentices is as follows:

Stipend (Year wise)


Minimum Rate of Stipend

First Year

70% of minimum wage of semi-skilled workers notified by the respective State or Union territory.

Second Year

80% of minimum wage of semi-skilled workers notified by the respective State or Union territory.

Third & Fourth Year

90% of minimum wage of semi-skilled workers notified by the respective State or Union territory.

  • The expenditure on stipend for trade apprentices is borne by the employers.
  • The rates of stipend for Graduate, Technician & Technician (Vocational) apprentices are Rs. 4984 p.m., Rs. 3542 p.m. and Rs. 2758 p.m. respectively. (with effect from 19th December, 2014)
  • Expenditure on Stipend for the categories of Graduate, Technician & Technician (Vocational) apprentices is shared equally between the employer and the Central Government.


  • Minimum age is 14 years.
  • Qualifications vary from Class VIII pass to XII class pass (10+2) system.
  • Period of training varies from 6 months to 4 years.
  • Training comprises Basic Training and Practical Training followed by Related   Instructions   as   per prescribed syllabus for each trade.
  • 259 trades in 39 trade groups have been designated. 
  • Numbers of seats for apprentices are calculated in the band of 2.5% to 10% of the total strength of the workers.
  • Every apprentice and employer has to enter into a contract of apprenticeship training, which is registered by the Apprenticeship Advisers.
  • Employers and apprentices have to fulfill their obligations under the Act.


  • All India Trade Tests (AITT) for trade apprentices are conducted by National Council of Vocational Training (NCVT) twice a year ( October/ November and April/May).
  • National Apprenticeship Certificates (NAC) are awarded to those who pass the AITT.
  • NAC is recognized for employment under Govt./Semi-Government departments/ organizations.


  • With a view to fostering healthy competition among apprentices as well as establishments, skill competition is organized at local, regional & All India levels.
  • Skill competition is held for 15 trades namely;  Fitter, Machinist,  Turner, Welder (Gas & Electric), Electrician, Mechanic (Motor Vehicle), Tool  &  Die  Maker (Die & Moulds), Tool and Die Maker(Press Tool, Jigs & Fixture),  Instrument Mechanic,  Draughtsman  (Mechanical),  Mechanic Machine Tool  Maintenance, Wireman, Mechanic(Diesel), Refrigeration & Air-Conditioning Mechanic  and Electronics Mechanic.


  • 126 subject fields have been designated for the category of Graduate & Technician apprentices. [Annexure IV]
  • 128 subject fields have been designated for the category of Technician (Vocational) apprentices. [Annexure V]
  • Period of post qualification training for these categories is one year.
  • Seats are located based on managerial/supervisory posts and training facilities.
  • Training program is prepared in joint consultation between Apprenticeship Adviser Establishment concerned.
  • Certificates are awarded on completion of training by the Dept. of Education, Ministry of Human Resource Development.

The Apprenticeship Rules, 1992
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Apprentices Act 1961
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