Image of private security guards set for a makeove

New Delhi, Nov 22 (IANS) The sloppy and slouchy image of private security guards — an industry estimated to touch Rs 64,000 crore ($9 billion) by 2018 — around the country is set for a huge makeover to turn them into smartly trained personnel with skills of international standards.

Aimed at tapping the growing international and national demand for Indian private security guards, the public-private Security Sector Skill Development Council (SSSDC) is coming up with centres of excellence across the country that will act as a veritable assembly line of private security personnel.

SSSDC has tied up with the Ministry of Defence and the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, along with several international institutes, for the centres of excellence that are to come up across all the parliamentary constituencies in the country.

“Not just domestically, there is a huge requirement of Indian private security personnel internationally. Once these centres of excellence are fully operational, they will open up flood gates of opportunities for Indian youth,” SSSDC chairman Vikram Singh told IANS.

“They will be not just trained in terms of security management but also provided other skills, including communication and language. The centres will be an assembly line of smartly-trained, international-standard security officers,” added Singh, who also heads the Central Association of Private Security Industry (CAPSI), which, along with the National Skill Development Corporation, set up the SSSDC.

The first such centre will come up in the National Capital Region in the next two months.

“The new centres will incorporate global standards and best practices for the private security industry,” said Singh.

“Besides the ministries of defence and skill development, we have tied up with British, Australian and Irish institutions for the centres, and the curriculum has been drawn up as per the National Skill Policy of the Indian government,” said Singh.

Currently employing over seven million people, the private security sector is anually growing at 25 per cent. Quoting an FICCI report, Singh said the industry is slated to reach Rs 64,000 crore by 2018.

Along with the growing urbanisation, the retail boom and increasing security concerns in society has boosted the industry, which has received a further push thanks to the demonetisation process initiated by the Narendra Modi government.

“The demand for Indian private security personnel in the international arena has been steeply growing, particularly in the Middle East, Africa and Europe. The centres of excellence are being set up to cater to that burgeoning demand,” said Singh.

With a share of nearly 90 percent, manned guarding is the largest component of the private security services industry — the rest being cash services which involves ATM replenishment, cash pick-up and delivery for banks and large corporate houses.

The SSSDC’s initiative comes in the wake of Union Minister of State for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Rajiv Pratap Rudy harping on the need to provide security guards various skills required to compete in the global markets.

Addressing the recently held Security Skills & Leadership Summit 2016 in Bengaluru, Rudy said it was very important for the security industry to focus on product presentation and quality services.

“Our security guards need further smart training and skilling to enter global markets.With enhanced skilling, the industry can train security guards for global markets,” Rudy said at the summit.

The private security sector currently has over 300 SSSDC standardised training centres across India, producing skilled security guards engaged mainly in manned guarding and cash services.

(Anurag Dey can be contacted at anurag.d@ians.in)

–IANS

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