Increase women enrolment in Higher Education

The Indian woman not only is industrious, possessing instincts of performing in each and every field of activity with precision, highly devoted to the assignment whether in office , field or in home but also has been leaving behind an indelible mark of intelligence and performance in academic sector . We experience, day in and day out , women not only performing superbly and exquisitely in the examinations but coming out among the enviable toppers. Name any field, right from medicine, education, defence to engineering, judiciary, police including the forces guarding borders to flying civil and fighter planes to great contribution towards literature and music, sports and the like where one does not find successful participation of Indian women. Her contribution being so impressive and performing has, however, the other face in respect of their enrolment in higher education system in the country being relatively low , if not as much to cause concern. That needs to be addressed towards which President Ram Nath Kovind referred to recently, while addressing a gathering at the launch of the HRD Ministry’s national rankings of Higher Educational Institutions for this year.
Let a cursory peep be made into the early days of 1890s, the concept of Kendriya Mahavidhyalia in the country in response to the need to impart to the women not only elementary but higher education to enable them adapt themselves to the new challenges and demands made by the educated men in the families without losing their cultural moorings. It is worth noting that among the founders of this education net work, especially in the then combined vast Punjab were women who even fought and resisted conservative and obscurantist opinions thus lending credence and the extreme import to participation of women in Education. It was greatly as a result of great stress laid on imparting education to Indian women by great social reformer, thinker and Vedic icon Dayanand Saraswati. The torch was kept continuously burning and glowing by many social reformers and educationists which hastened the process of more participation of women in the field of education . The genesis of the institutions like the one referred to here, paved the way for upgrading of the schools to colleges and then to higher platforms where the girls could participate and ultimately radiate the society with their geniuses . The Reform Movement of the early nineteenth century had the women’s education as its central position which we find today blooming in such a magnificent form. However, much needs to be done.
What the President , however, wanted to convey was that there was not enough enrolment of women in higher education system while it was experienced that very often, women were among the dominators in the toppers and medallists in the convocations . It is an admitted fact that the Ministry of Human Resources Development, over the years has been doing a good job in this respect but the spread, even now, appears to be not evenly managed . In other words, in eastern institutions much is needed to be done. The natural corollary is that when girls can outshine boys in schools and colleges , they equally are expected to do the same in higher education system which is corroborated by the available data. The question is regarding allowing not only the opportunities but adequately and evenly spread. The prejudices and the reservations in some families against their daughters in respect of going in for studying in higher educational institutions not on account of monetary constraints but as social “considerations”, if any wherever prevalent, must be fought out to result in better results and more participation of women in the nation building.


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