India’s first university only for Dalit students to come up in Hyderabad by 2018
By the next academic session, an exclusive university for Dalits could start in Hyderabad as part of the Telangana government’s policy of free education to students from weaker sections.india Updated: Jul 06, 2017 16:36 IST
If the Telangana government has its way, Dalit students who wish to pursue their post-graduation in the state will have an exclusive university for them by next academic year.
A proposal to establish an exclusive university for Dalit students in Hyderabad is under active consideration of the state government, official sources said. The university is said to be part of the government’s policy of providing education free of cost to students from weaker sections from kindergarten to post-graduation (KG to PG) level.
The proposal was mooted by a government arm - Telangana Social Welfare Residential Educational Institutions Society (TSWREIS) which runs nearly 268 residential institutions for Dalit students from Class V to under-graduate level, besides the recently sanctioned 39 non-residential play schools with pre-primary education.
“We discussed the proposal for establishing an exclusive university for Dalit students with chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao recently and he has appreciated the idea. The modalities are being worked out and if everything goes as per the plan, we are likely to start the university by 2018-19 academic year,” TSWREIS secretary Dr R S Praveen Kumar told Hindustan Times.
Once established, it will be the first of its kind university for Dalit students in the country. At present, there are universities exclusively for women and religious minorities but not for weaker sections, though they are given reservations in various state-run universities.
Praveen said the objective of establishing an exclusive university for Dalit students is to provide them a comprehensive education, so that they would come out as complete and knowledgeable citizens. “Till a couple of years ago, we had been providing education to our students from primary school up to Intermediate. Later, we started degree colleges with under-graduate courses. At present, we have 30 degree colleges with over 3,500 students. In the next step, we want to groom them as post-graduates by establishing our own university. Thus, we want to empower our students with higher education so that they face any challenges in the world and compete with any other social groups,” he said.
Once the Dalit university comes into existence, all degree colleges which are now affiliated to other universities, would come under it.
“The medium of instruction in all our institutions from schooling to graduation is English. Our students are not inferior to students of any other English medium schools and colleges. Once the university comes into being, sky is the limit for them,” Praveen said.
The Dalit students of social welfare institutions have already been excelling in academics for the last few years. This year, a record number of 55 SC students got admission into MBBS and 15 others got into the BDS course by securing good ranks in the National Eligibility Entrance Test (NEET)-2017.
“We launched a special training programme called Operation Blue Crystal in June, 2015, for MBBS aspirants. Besides, MBBS, our students are getting admission into several prestigious institutions in the country, like Delhi University, Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), Lady Shriram College and Azim Premji University,” he said.