All colleges in J&K will introduce a 30 credit voluntary skill certification programme this year, the Principal Secretary Higher Education Department (HED), Rohit Kansal announced on Monday.He further said that these courses will be in addition to the curriculum prescribed by the UGC for the undergraduate programme, adding that the aim is to give the students an additional skill certification leading to their higher employability.Kansal made these remarks while speaking at the two-day Conference on ‘NEP-2020: Preparedness & Implementation’ here at Lalla Arifa Auditorium of Government College for Women, MA Road.The conference is jointly being organised by four city colleges, viz. Amar Singh College, S P College, Islamia College of Science and Commerce and Women’s College M A Road.The Principal Secretary also informed that in addition several other innovative and reformative steps such as a uniform academic calendar, fidelity of the time table and exam schedule, student and institutional feedback, ERP support and biometric attendance will be introduced from this year onwards.Terming the NEP 2020 as a revolutionary policy, Kansal said that the policy promises to change the entire higher educational ecosystem in India and its focus on flexibility, multidisciplinary and equity are unique and unprecedented. He reiterated that NEP 2020 had come into being after extensive stakeholder consultations and discussions, deliberations and suggestions from all concerned.“Now it is time to implement the package. And when it comes to the implementation of policy, all of us have a role to play. Universities have a very important role being norm setting institutions and the guardians of our academic standards; but in the actual implementation at the ground level the colleges will have to lead the way,” Kansal said while addressing the inaugural session of the conference.During his address, Vice Chancellor Cluster University, Prof Qayoom Hussain talked about the importance of NEP 2020 and the preparedness of the University in drafting the syllabus and all related activities.While speaking on the occasion, Vice Chancellor University of Kashmir, Prof Neelofer Khan expressed confidence that the NEP 2020 would be fully implemented across all the educational institutions of J&K. She outlined the efforts of the University of Kashmir in this direction and promised all support to the Higher Educational Institutions in the implementation of the policy.Director Colleges J&K, Dr Yasmeen Ashai gave a brief about the conference and said that the conference would help in effective and wide consultations with stakeholders and academicians and will set a roadmap for better implementation of NEP 2020.Principal Government Women’s College Srinagar, Prof (Dr) Ruhi Jan Kanth gave a brief overview of NEP 2020 and said the policy envisages multidisciplinary and holistic education with creative and logical thinking coupled with extension of technology.She said that the deliberations of the conference would be used to roll out NEP’s implementation in the Union Territory of J&K.On the first day of the two day conference, a technical session on ‘Multidisciplinary & Holistic Education’ was also held which was chaired by VC University of Kashmir, Prof Neelofer Khan. A total of 4 technical sessions will be held during the course of the conference wherein eminent academicians and administrators will participate in panel discussions to deliberate on the different aspects related to the implementation of NEP-2020. The Sessions will be chaired by Vice Chancellors of several Universities.The conference was attended by eminent academicians, VCs of various universities, Principals of different colleges of Kashmir, faculty members and others.