Of the 125 crore people of the country, 58 per cent were job seekers and they should be turned into skilled workers, Mukherjee emphasised.
He was addressing a gathering while inaugurating the academic campus of Ghani Khan Choudhury Institute of Engineering& Technology, near here in Malda district.
The President said only one third of the present work force in the country were skilled while others were unskilled or semi-skilled.
Stating that those unskilled or semi-skilled workers should be given training to turn them into skilled ones, he said the opportunity for doing so was maximum in the manufacturing sector.
"Within a few years we have to develop skill in 50 crore people," Mukherjee said.
The Ghani Khan Choudhury Institute of Engineering & Technology was established in 2010 by the Union Ministry of Human Resource Development in the memory of former union minister ABA Ghani Khan Choudhury, who contributed a lot in developing Malda.
The President, who planted a sapling in the compound, said Ghani Khan Choudhury had nurtured a dream to set up an institute like this where there would be innovation in both teaching and learning.