This initiative will pave the way for girls from weaker section getting access to higher education in the country

To enable school girls belonging to the weaker socio-economic section to gain access to the higher education, the Government has launched Udaan scheme, Union Minister of Education Ramesh Pokhriyal 'Nishank' said while presenting the AICTE Lilavati Awards 2020 on women empowerment to the winners in New Delhi on Sunday.

He said, “We also started Pragati Yojana to give young women an opportunity to further their technical education.”

He said the new National Educational Policy has greatly emphasised on gender equality and students should participate in such initiatives to promote women empowerment.

The Education Minister welcomed the initiative of AICTE for instituting the Lilawati Awards and stressed that such innovative steps shall be great motivation for girls to join higher education.

This initiative, he said, will pave a path towards equality in education and innovation, for women.

Based on the theme 'Women Empowerment’, AICTE finalized the winners from a total of 456 entries who competed across 6 sub themes, which include, Women's Health, Self-Defense, Sanitation and Hygiene, Literacy, Women Entrepreneurship, and Legal Awareness.

After analyzing the initial entries, the top 10 entries under each sub-theme were invited for presentation before the two committees headed by Prof Sushma Yadava, Vice-Chancellor, B.P.S. Mahila Vishwavidyalaya Khanpur Kalan, Haryana and Dr. Vinita S. Sahay, Director, IIM Bodh Gaya.

SWEAT (Sona Women Entrepreneurship and Training) from Sona College of Technology, Tamil Nadu won the contest in the ‘Women Entrepreneurship’ sub theme. Under the 'Digital Literacy' sub theme, Bharatiya Vidyapeeth won the contest. Institute of Management and Entrepreneurship Development Pune won the award under the 'Literacy' sub theme.

WIT Women Health Coalition from Walchand Institute of Technology, Maharashtra won the award under the 'Women's Health' sub theme. Radiant Seetha from Thiagarajar Polytechnic College won the contest in the 'Legal Awareness' sub theme. Finally, Paritrana from St. Joseph's College of Engineering, Tamil Nadu won the award for the ‘Self Defense’ sub theme.

Bharatiya Vidyapeeth, who won the award under the digital literacy subtheme suggested that the internet revolution that has happened in India post-2014 has played a crucial role in empowering women in the nation.

“Post-2014, the internet revolution happened in India, and it has helped women in the country to grow, as information is accessible at their fingertips. However, even now, there are several women in the country who do not have sufficient digital literacy, and we should bring them too to the forefront of the society,” said Bharatiya Vidyapeeth.