Friday, August 07, 2009

'After Hunar, girls equipped with auzar'

PATNA: Noori Parvin smiles behind her veil. She has not only completed her one-year training course under Hunar programme in the first batch but

also received Rs 2,500 on Thursday to procure tools to begin her profession. "I'll purchase a sewing machine and pursue a sewing profession," said the teenager from Phulwarisharif showing her bank pass-book which she received from chief minister Nitish Kumar at a function at S K Memorial Hall on Thursday. Gulshan Bano, Hina Kausar, Shabnam, Shama and other girls, too, were simply over the moon after receiving the money. The Hunar programme was launched on July 2 last year by Nitish in which 13,768 girls were covered of which about 12,000 completed their respective vocational courses and passed the test conducted by the National Institute of Open Schooling (NIOS). The state HRD and Bihar Education Project (BEP) organized the function to distribute Rs 2,500 to each successful girl through bank or post office pass-book for purchasing tools. Nitish gave the pass-books to some girls and officials said the accounts would be opened in the name of each of the 12,000 girls so that they can deposit the money there. Speaking on the occasion, Nitish said the programme envisaged extending the available scheme to girls belonging to other disadvantaged groups. He said 25,000 Muslim girls and an equal number of girls from Mahadalit, Dalit and EBC sections would be covered under the Hunar scheme in the second phase. The fund for the scheme would be raised to approximately Rs six crore. Hundreds of training centres under the scheme had been opened by faith-based Muslim organizations __ Imarat Shariah, Idara-e-Shariah and Rahmani Foundation __ across the state and a large number of Muslim grils showed keen interest in it. The objective behind the scheme was to introduce the girls in the formal education structure, promote and motivate them to enroll in schools and also promote retention in school through the incentive of free vocational training programme. "The training has helped the girls in developing their self-confidence, courage and a sense to do something with their own skill and capability," Nitish said. He also said computer training would be included in the list of vocational courses. Referring to the programme "Akshar Aanchal" to be launched on August 9, Nitish said 40 lakh women would be made literate in six months and Rs 53 crore had been sanctioned for the scheme. He advised the girl students, who have been provided with bicycles, to give time and help in making women literate. Earlier, HRD minister Harinarayan Singh, principal secretary Anjani Kumar Singh, BEP director Rajesh Bhushan and representatives of Imarat Shariah, Idara-e-Shariah, Khanquah Mujibia and eminent cleric Maulana Shamim Munaami addressed the beneficiaries. Though Hunar is a collaborative project of the state government and Union HRD ministry, the year-old scheme has not been launched in any other state so far.