The Vice President, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu today stressed the urgent need to bridge the skill gap in the youth to make them competent for the new market demands and to improve the productivity of our workforce. ‘This is critical to accelerate India’s economy in the coming years,’ he said.In this regard, Shri Naidu called upon the leaders in the industry and social sector to supplement the efforts of the government in training and skill development such as the Kaushal Vikas Yojana, Udaan, etc. He urged the industry to take this up as a ‘noble social mission’. He appreciated the efforts of Indian companies who have been imparting such vocational training through their corporate social responsibility and generating sustainable livelihoods for many poor people. He also noted the crucial role of skilling in uplifting and empowering women financially and socially.Visiting the GMR Varalakshmi Foundation's Centre for Empowerment and Livelihoods in Hyderabad, Shri Naidu interacted with the staff and the participants undergoing training at the centre. He suggested that skill up-gradation must also match the emerging demands of the 21st century in order to remain competitive in the job market. He advised the trainees to be abreast with the latest technological developments.Later, the Vice President also visited GMR Chinmaya Vidyalaya and interacted with the teachers and students. The founder-chairman of GMR Group, Grandhi Mallikarjuna Rao, officials and staff of the GMR Varalakshmi Foundation and others were present during the visit.