UP Governor calls for providing online education to transgenders

In 2019, government data revealed that no transgenders were enrolled in central universities in India, whereas 814 transgender students were enrolled at IGNOU
Pic: Edexlive
Pic: Edexlive

Advocating for online education to be used as a vessel to expand the reach of education, Uttar Pradesh's Governor Anandiben Patel said that online education should be provided to transgenders. "The open university can play an important role in educating all sections of the society," said Patel in her virtual address at the Foundation Day celebrations of the UP Rajarshi Tandon Open University. Patel also batted for online education to be provided to youth detained in jails so that they can "earn their livelihood by doing some constructive work in the society after completing their sentence," according to a report by PTI.

Back in 2019, the Union Government had, in response to a question on the number of transgender people enrolled in central universities in India in the Lok Sabha, said that while there were no transgender students enrolled in central universities, 814 students were enrolled at the Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU). Minister for Education at the time, Ramesh Pokhriyal, had also said that there was no transgender teaching and non-teaching staff in various central universities of the country.

As per the National Education Policy 2020, a National Digital University is in the works and reports suggest that an announcement from the University Grants Commission is expected on the same in the coming days. Commenting on Twitter on the importance of online education, UGC Chairman, M Jagadesh Kumar said, "Online programmes provide a window of opportunity to many students who are unable to join physically in a college or University. There is a steady increase in the number of enrolments in online programmes."

The Chairman added that an announcement on the National Digital University and "flexible online education regulations" should boost the number of students enrolling in online programmes. "We need to take advantage of modern digital technologies to prepare engaging digital content and reach out to students using growing internet availability. At an affordable cost, students can access high-quality education to become skilful and knowledgeable," the Chairman added.

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