Special Concession for Third Gender in State Joint Fees

In a significant move towards fostering gender inclusivity in the field of engineering, the West Bengal State Joint Entrance Board has announced a pioneering initiative to encourage female students and candidates of the third gender. The introduction of a special discount on the application fee, effective from the State Joint 2024 examinations, aims to level the playing field and promote equal opportunities for all aspiring engineers.

Education Minister Bratya Basu, speaking at X Handel on Tuesday, shared insights into the government's decision, emphasizing that this step resonates with the ideals of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. The initiative seeks to actively encourage girl children to pursue education, particularly in the challenging domain of engineering. Minister Basu expressed optimism about the positive impact this move would have on motivating female students to take a more active role in the engineering entrance examinations.

"The online registration for the West Bengal Joint Entrance Examination, 2024 will start from December 28. This year, the registration fee is being reduced for unreserved, reserved category female candidates, and transgender candidates," Minister Basu announced, marking a significant change to facilitate increased participation from traditionally underrepresented groups.

Malayendu Saha, Chairman of the State Joint Entrance Board, addressed concerns about potential bias, stating, "We are not judging students. However, the participation of male students is much higher than that of female students in the joint. We feel that female students should also be motivated so that they come forward to study engineering." He emphasized the importance of creating an environment that encourages inclusivity and equal participation.

Saha further noted the increasing presence of individuals from the third gender at the graduate and post-graduate levels and underlined the need to provide them with equal opportunities in the engineering domain. "Now we see more of them at the graduate and post-graduate level. Why will they lag in engineering there? I did it to encourage them too," he remarked during the announcement.

The State Joint Entrance Board's decision reflects a commitment to breaking down gender barriers in engineering education and fostering an environment where all students, regardless of gender, can pursue their academic aspirations with equal opportunities. The reduction in registration fees for female candidates and candidates of the third gender is a tangible step towards achieving this goal and creating a more inclusive landscape for future engineers in West Bengal. 

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