People achieve self-dignity through education: Patil

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New Delhi, Nov 19 (ANI): President Pratibha Patil said here on Thursday that education is a very powerful tool for empowering people and for giving them self-dignity.

Addressing the silver jubilee celebrations of the Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) here Patil said: "The importance of education cannot be over emphasized. It is a very powerful tool for empowering people and for giving them self-dignity. It becomes even more important for a nation like ours that is in the process of harnessing its human resources for rapid economic growth."

Emphasizing the need of providing skill based training in schools and colleges, President Patil said: "Proper training, provisioning of skills sets and capacity building of its population are tools which shall make our human resources competent and confident to face the new set of challenges of a fast changing world."

Stressing on the importance of quality education Patil said: "While broadbasing access to education is important, one must not lose sight of the utmost importance which should be paid to the quality of education being given to students and the need for equity. This should start from the primary level itself."

In her address, Patil highlighted the need for spreading of education amongst women.

"By spreading education amongst them, not only is an individual educated, but rather the seeds of progress of the next generation are planted," she said.

"Therefore, reaching education to young girls and boys must occupy a foremost position on our agenda, if we are to be firmly positioned as one of the leading nations of the world," Patil added.

Expressing concern over the low Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER) in the country's higher education as compared to the world average, she said: "Strenuous efforts are required to reach our goal of enhancing GER in India to 20 percent by 2020."

"A massive expansion in higher education through new institutions along with efforts to improve educational standards, including through undertaking structural reforms in the higher education system and using all available methods to spread education," Patil concluded. (ANI)

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