The Telegraph
Thursday , May 31 , 2012
 
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Bitiyas to get books, uniforms

Chief minister Arjun Munda, after his narrow escape in the chopper crash-land, had said that the “blessings” of Jharkhand’s bitiyas were one of the reasons that saved him.

He is sure to get more blessings, as the state secondary education directorate has decreed that girl students of government high schools should receive two sets of uniforms, textbooks and even solar lamps — the last item so that they can do their homework in places without electricity.

The order was issued by the directorate on Tuesday to all the district education officers (DEOs) to list the total number of girl students enrolled between Classes IX and XII, so that they could receive their gifts from the state.

Across Jharkhand, there are 377 state-run high schools, with 30 having plus two (classes XI and XII).

Mamta (she only uses her first name), who is the director, secondary education, told The Telegraph that they were working out the modalities.

“The entire proposal will be finalised very soon. This scheme is especially meant to facilitate girl students to complete their Plus Two studies. Many girls lack the basic things needed to pursue their studies, which we will provide. It will bring down dropout rates also,” she said.

Mamta also said that gender bias did play a role in girls dropping out of school.

“Many parents don’t want to spend money on their textbooks or uniforms. Boys don’t have to face all this. The incentives have been finalised based on practical needs,” she added.