Maharashtra Govt Introduces 'Free Higher Education' Program for Underprivileged Girls

Maharashtra Govt Introduces 'Free Higher Education' Program for Underprivileged Girls

By: WE Staff | Tuesday, 9 July 2024

The Maharashtra government is introducing a free higher education program for girls from Economically Weaker Sections (EWS), Socially and Educationally Background Classes (SEBC), and Other Backward Classes (OBCs) whose annual family income is or less than Rs 8 lakh, aiming to promote gender equality and increase educational opportunities. The initiative covers tuition fees and other costs, aiming to make it more accessible for girls from underprivileged communities and to continue their education beyond secondary school.

The cabinet meeting decided to waive tuition and exam fees to orphan students, both male and female, starting from the academic year 2024-25. The decision is expected to cost Rs 906 crore and will apply to female students seeking admission to recognized vocational courses through the Centralized Admission Process in government colleges, aided private colleges, and open universities. The fee will be offered to students from various departments, including medicine, pharmacy, agriculture, animal husbandry, and dairy development, with exceptions for students from private autonomous universities, management, and institutional quotas.

The initiative will cover the costs of students such as tuition, examination, library, and laboratory fees providing a comprehensive financial support scheme. The scheme will be implemented across government and government-aided institutions, including private ones. It aims to increase enrollment, reduce dropout rates, enhance employment opportunities, and empower women, aligning with gender equality and social justice goals.

The initiative will further offer various undergraduate, postgraduate, and professional courses, along with financial aid and support services like counseling and mentoring to assist students in their educational journey. It is eligible for both new admissions and students currently pursuing their education degree.

Additionally, the Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar announced several schemes, including Mukhyamantri Annapoorna Yojana, Yuva Karyaprashikshan Yojana, Krishi Pump Yojana, and Majhi Ladki Bahin Yojana.