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Posted at: Jun 15, 2017, 1:04 AM; last updated: Jun 15, 2017, 1:04 AM (IST)

IITs propose to earmark seats for girl students

Pushing girls for IITs

  • The IIT Council on April 28 decided to target B.Tech female enrolment of 14 per cent in 2018, 17 per cent in 2019 and 20 per cent in 2020.
  • The council approved 15 recommendations
  • Among the immediate step proposed to be taken was to add supernumerary seats for women in IITs
  • Other steps included providing merit scholarships, prizes and other incentives
  • During the next few years, the focus need to be on targeting bright schoolgirls from Class VIII and motivating them towards IITs and helping them prepare for admissions

Arun Sharma

Tribune News Service

Mandi, June 14

Wary of lesser number of girls enrolment in B.Tech courses, IITs have decided to encourage girl students, said IIT Mandi Director Dr Timothy A. Gonsalves, who heads a sub-committee formed to find solution to the issue.

IITs have targeted to increase the enrolment of women in B.Tech courses from 8 per cent to 20 per cent in 4 years. Dr Timothy said nearly 3 lakh women joined engineering in 2016 and 4,570 of them cleared JEE (Advance). However, a mere 848 of them joined IITs against nearly 75,000 enrolments available in all IITs. There were planning to increase the enrolments to one lakh. It was found that 1,400 women, eligible to get admissions in IITs, preferred other institutes, said the director. There were several factors, including societal biases (attitudes of parents, family, teachers,) and lack of sufficient role models, he added.

First, these biases resulted in much lower access to coaching. The choices for women candidates during counselling were also limited. They were allowed to opt only a few branches in a few IITs near their homes. “Further, due to very low number of women in IIT B.Tech, the schoolgirls, who aspire to do engineering, are unlikely to have any relative who did BTech in any IIT to serve as role models,” said Gonsalves.

He said to target such aspirants for admission in engineering courses, IITs would organise an open house to redress the reservations of women candidates at IIT Delhi. This time 7,137 girls qualified JEE (Advance), making 14.14 per cent of the total number of the qualified candidates. The Director, IIT-Mandi has written to each successful female candidate, urging her to take advantage of the unique programme.

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