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Craftsmen Training Scheme

Craftsmen Training Scheme

Craftsmen Training Scheme

The Craftsmen Training Scheme (CTS) was launched to offer vocational and technical training that can bridge the skill gap and enhance employability. It is implemented by the Directorate General of Training (DGT) under the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE). It is designed to ensure craftsmen in the manufacturing and service sectors acquire necessary skills for lucrative jobs. Apart from training courses, the CTS also validates experienced technicians with no formal training. This will open up more opportunities for employment and self-employment. In this article, we will explore the process involved in obtaining a National Trade Certificate (NTC) through CTS.

Objectives of CTS

Most jobs available in the manufacturing or services sector require applicants to exhibit their skills through formal ways of authentication such as degrees, diplomas and certificates. Unfortunately, this sets back skilled technicians who do not have validation from relevant institutions. By letting them acquire certificates, the Craftsmen Training Scheme addresses the following problems:

  • Lack of stable, uninterrupted employment despite being skilled and experienced
  • Inability to meet eligibility criteria for certain jobs
  • Stagnation in career growth
  • Lack of recognition for skills and hands-on experience
  • Inability to capitalise on job vacancies despite being informally qualified

Salient Features

  • The Craftsmen Training Scheme covers untrained and trained technicians.
  • For candidates who are in need of training.
  • CTS allows them to attend courses of varying durations depending on the nature of the chosen field.
  • The training will be imparted by both private and government empanelled Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs).
  • After successful completion of the course, they must attempt the All India Trade Test (AITT).
  • Subject to clearing the AITT, they will be given the National Trade Certificate.

Technicians who have already gathered skills through years of on-field experience can get their NCTs by directly attempting the AITT as a ‘Private Candidate’.

Eligibility Criteria

To take up AITT as a private candidate through the Craftsmen Training Scheme, applicants must fulfil certain general and course-specific eligibility conditions. For the first three categories, these criteria are common:

  • The applicant must satisfy basic general educational qualification and specific conditions depending on the course. Criteria for all the 138 courses may be found at
  • Experience can be gained from any of the following entities:
    • Enterprises implementing the Apprenticeship Training Scheme (ATS)
    • Enterprises registered with Apprenticeship Portal
    • Registered MSMEs
    • Other entities registered under any level of government
    • Shops registered through Factories Act or Shops and Establishments Act

All the relevant Annexures with details regarding the courses may be found at

The specific criteria for the four different categories of candidates are as follows:

  • Successful pass-outs from ITIs: This category includes trainees who have already been certified for any of the courses under CTS.
  • Such candidates may apply for AITT in any other allied trade
  • On the date of application, the candidate must have gathered at least one year’s worth of experience in the chosen trade in any of the entities listed above.
  • Current and ex-trainees under Centre of Excellence (CoE) scheme: This category includes applicants who have already received or are receiving training through CoE scheme.
  • Applicants are allowed to appear only for that trade.
  • Applicant must maintain a gap of at least one year from the time of declaration of results for the CoE course and the time of application as a private candidate.
  1. The gap year must be used to gain experience in the chosen trade at any of the above-listed entities.
  2. This category consists of all other candidates who are not covered in the previous three categories. These applicants must fulfil the following conditions:
    • Minimum age for application is 21. There is no maximum age.
    • The applicant must have at least three years’ experience in any of the listed entities.
    • SCVT trainees from August 2019 batch onwards are also covered.
    • State Council for Vocational Training (SCVT) applicants:
      • This is applicable only for trainees admitted until the August 2018 session. Such candidates may appear for AITT.
      • Trainees admitted after August 2018 cannot appear as private candidates under this category. Instead, they are granted equivalence for obtaining the National Apprenticeship Certificate (NAC).

Implementation Strategy

Implementation of the Craftsmen Training Scheme for private candidates is dependent on the ITIs and state directorates. The ITIs which can admit private candidates will meet some conditions as well:

  • Only the government and not private ITIs
  • Grading of at least 2.0
  • Affiliation for relevant trades
  • Regular admittance of CTS applicants for affiliated trades
  • Admittance of private candidates in stipulated proportion

State directorates will take responsibility to ensure that:

  • Only eligible ITIs in the state admit private candidates under CTS
  • List of eligible ITIs is published in the respective state portal
  • Applications are called for along with details regarding eligibility criteria, etc
  • Entrance test may be conducted if the number of applicants exceeds the number of seats
  • Private candidates list is frozen three months ahead of the regular AITT
  • Selection and uploading of selected candidates list is smooth and transparent

Examination Structure

Upon selection, a list of successful candidates will be published on the DGT MIS portal. Some important details regarding AITT for private candidates under Craftsmen Training Scheme include:

  • Examination fees shall be determined by DGT and may differ from state to state.
  • Candidates will be issued hall tickets before the test and must bear their expenses for reaching their exam centres.
  • For courses under one year, candidates can appear based on the academic year exam schedule. For two year courses, all the papers meant for both years must be cleared.
  • Private candidates will appear for the exam along with regular candidates and will have the same number of attempts.
  • Marking scheme is as follows:


Subject type Max. marks

Passing mark

Trade theory Professional knowledge



Workshop calculation and science Core skill



Engineering drawing Core skill



Trade practical Professional skill assessment



Employability skill Core skill





Candidates who qualify all the papers and clear the AITT in their chosen trade shall receive an e-Marksheet and an e-National Trade Certificate.

Application Procedure

The steps involved in the application process of the Craftsmen Training Scheme for private candidates are:

Step 1: State directorate shall call for applications online and offline.

Step 2: Subject to fulfilment of eligibility conditions, interested candidates may apply offline or online at the relevant state portal.

Step 3: Applicants may be asked to attempt an entrance test if needed.

Step 4: Approval of application after verification of documents and information.

Step 5: Candidates will be assigned ITIs for AITT by the state directorate and list of selected candidates will be put up online.

Step 6: Candidates will be given registration number from DGT MIS portal and receipt of acknowledgement.

Step 7: Payment of stipulated exam fees by the candidate and receipt of admit card.

Documents Required

Documents and details needed for application as a private candidate under the Craftsmen Training Scheme (CTS) may include:

  • ID proof
  • Photograph
  • Address proof
  • Personal details like contact number and e-mail ID
  • Marksheet establishing minimum required educational qualification

Documents proving experience: Payslips or bank statements, copy of registration of entity in Apprenticeship Portal, etc.