Bathinda: The School of Education of the Central University of Punjab under the patronage of Vice Chancellor Prof. Raghavendra P. Tiwari organized a Webinar on ‘Inclusive and Equitable Higher Education’. The keynote speaker of this programme was Dr. Sanjay Kant Prasad, Deputy Chief Commissioner of Persons with Disabilities, Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Govt. of India.
While introducing the programme theme Dr. Shankar Lal Bika, Head & Dean, School of Education, CUPB said, the concept of Equitable & Inclusive Education will be realized when all the students regardless of their challenges are placed in general education classes in their own neighbourhood Schools and Higher Education Institutions (HEIs).
Keynote speaker Dr. Sanjay Kant Prasad stated that India is a diverse country with different groups of diverse people who are somehow deprived of \mainstream education and higher education. He described various types of human diversities and considered Persons with Disability (PwD) having diverse group and who requires larger support from academicians and policymakers to actualize the vision of diversity, equity and inclusion in the higher education sector in India. He shared that that NEP-2020 has introduced innovative reforms to make quality higher education opportunities available to all individuals of society. He talked about various types of disabilities as described in ‘Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016’ and discussed various Government Schemes to enhance the accessibility of primary and higher education programmes to every person and make PwD the productive citizens of our society. He stressed the need for the development of resources, developing the structure of resources and development of an accessible environment for the effective utilization of resources to create an equitable and inclusive society. He referred to various software and, aids and appliances to impart education to PwDs and emphasized the need to adopt action and empirical research to find out need-based solutions for every student in the classroom. He also shared that the ‘Rehabilitation Council of India’ has designed rehabilitation professional education programmes for various types of disabilities and the same can be made available by universities with the approval of UGC to achieve the objective.
In his presidential address Prof. Raghavendra P. Tiwari, the Vice Chancellor, stated that our ancient Indian holy scriptures, saints and social reformers have enlightened us to work towards creating an inclusive and equitable society. He underlined the need to change the existing vertical structure of resources to the horizontal structure, so as to increase the accessibility of resources to every section of society. He emphasized that change can be possible at the societal level when we appreciate the special abilities in every differently-abled person and consider them as an important part of our society.
Prof. R.K. Wusirika, Dean Incharge Academics, gave concluding remarks and extended a formal vote of thanks. Faculty and students of the university attended this programme.