Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU), the largest open university in the country declared to waive the tuition fees of all transgender students across all the programs it offers.
By this move they are making higher education more accessible to those people of society who desire to study but were held back by the general culture of the education system in India.
After this announcement was made, transgender people danced and celebrated across the streets of IGNOU that finally their people are being recognized and valued.
The University has already received more than 100 applications from various transgender students. Speaking with Indian Express, Vice Chancellor of the University, Ravindra Kumar, said,
An NGO approached our Regional Director in Delhi last year for enrolling transgenders into our programmes, to give them some sense of respect. Once they take to some course in IGNOU, they feel elevated and slightly better because of their social status. If they take to education, their lot will improve substantially. So once the officials approached us, we welcomed (the idea).
Also, according to a report by Indian Express, a notification signed by the Registrar of the Student Registration Division, said,
The competent authority is pleased to approve fee exemption in all programmes for transgender candidates. Any certificate issued by the Central/State government/medical officer/any other competent authority/Aadhaar card etc., may be sought for the purpose.
IGNOU offers more than 200 programs to approximately 30 lakh students. This step taken by the university will benefit 4,000 transgender students who were earlier discriminated against due to their lack of education and sound background.
The course is designed in such a manner that those who have not completed 10+2 can also join the B.A program and learn the basics and elementary information.
To be eligible, they just have to show a certificate by state or central government or Aadhar card. The university’s decision was declared on July 2 and since then more than 100 application have received by IGNOU.
This enormous victory for the third gender says much and places them at par with other people.
As reported, JNU vice chancellor, M Jagadesh Kumar, urged the teaching community to give precedence to quality of life rather than standard of living.
Former vice chancellor of Telangana’s Kakatiya University, Y Vaikuntham, advocated spending 6 percent of the GDP on education. He said,
The government should give freedom and spend 6 percent of the GDP on education. Main thrust should be to devise effective strategies to address the challenges to the growth of education in India and to realise the potential of the country’s demographic dividend as envisaged in the national education policy of 2016.