Jaipur, April 8: Hindustan Zinc, a part of the Vedanta Group, has completed 20 years of its initiative in Rajasthan's Sikar district to impart higher education to the rural and tribal girls in the vicinity, managing to change the lives of some 3,000 such undeprivileged students.
"The Vedanta Post Graduate Girls College at Ringus in Sikar, Rajasthan, is one of the projects of Hindustan Zinc that is providing quality education to rural and tribal girls since its inception in the year 1995 in a fully integrated sustainable environment," the company said.
"Besides education, girls are also excelling in liberal arts like painting. One such exhibition was organised recently by these girls which was inaugurated by Dwarka Prasad Agarwal, or Babuji, the founder of Vedanta Foundation," the company added. The group also gave some examples of this initiative.
Sugna Salvi, who lives in Peepawas village with her parents and two younger brothers, was good in her studies, completed her 12th with 1st division in 2011 and wanted to join college. But with a monthly income of just Rs.4,000, her painter-father was unable to fund her studies.
The Hindustan Zinc team which came to know about Sugna, convinced her unwilling family, told it about Vedanta College and assured them of a protective environment. Sugna has completed her second year of graduation in science with first division and now is in final year.
Similar was the case with Lalita Khati, a daughter of a small farmer, from Khatikhera village in Bhilwara District, who was sponsored by Hindustan Zinc and is now seeking to complete her master's degree. For Reshma Meena from Gram Panchyat Singhatwara, things were a little different.
She intended to drop out of studies due to family's income, and family pressure. But on selection in 2011-12 for a bachelor's degree in arts at Vedanta Post Graduate Girls College, she is in final year. "Education in rural girls is a necessity.
India has the second largest educational system in the world, but less number of enrolments of girls from school to colleges, primarily in rural areas, is a matter of concern," said the company.
"Early marriage, distant schools, household chores, lack of transport, lack of safety, absence of female teachers and most importantly poverty are some of the many reasons not permitting girls' education."