Reaching the inaccessible

Online Education

Atul, a boy in grade 5 used to be a bright and talented student until the pandemic began. Due to the closure of schools, he like many of his friends were unable to continue classes and studies. His mother who used to work in a nearby shoe factory had to give up her job. His father, too, who used to sell vegetables lost out on daily earnings. This cumulatively impacted the livelihood of many families and affected many boys and girls alike Atul. Atul’s school, though, was adaptive enough to start sharing class notes and study materials on the smartphones. Atul and his family could not access such a smart education as we call it. So, he and some of his classmates were left out with the education system not providing any alternative umbrella beyond smartphones. Thus, here we see a large segment of deprived students. Some also just because of no internet connectivity.

Students who do not have access to any such digital medium through which they can continue their studies have lost out on their future to the pandemic, it seems.  Atul’s life reality paints a picture altogether for lacs of rural and semi urban societies for whom free or subsidised education meant nothing as they couldn’t access it. That’s where our hearts cry out! Are we going to let a chunk of our population go uneducated?

Besides the rural – urban divide, think about the substantial effects that the disparity of accessing education will throw us at. Closures of educational institutions hamper the provision of essential services to children and communities, including access to nutritious mid-day meals, affect the ability of many parents to work, and increase risks of violence against women and girls.

A recent UNESCO report says, the pandemic-induced disruption has affected more than 90 per cent of the world’s student population, accounting for over 120 crore students and youths across the planet. The estimate for India is that more than 32 crores of students have been affected, of which about 14 crore are primary and 13 crore secondary level students.

Education experts say that many children may not be able to recoup from the poverty ditch and go back to school for some years, widening the gap between rich and poor and jeopardising the prospects of tens of millions of children trying to pull themselves out of poverty.  Can we think about any social or financial packages or stimulus here, at this juncture when the harrowing Covid gaps are still present?

However, there are a few silver linings. Research says, a few schools have gone out of their way creatively. Some schools in MP started broadcasting their classes over loudspeakers, while outdoor group classes have also been organised in some villages there so that pupils can keep a safe distance while they learn. Also, reports of broadcasting study lessons on specified television channels is another good idea here.

We as individuals, technology providers, organisations can do our bit too if we realise education is one of society’s greatest equalisers. Just donating money won’t help. A thought to ponder upon!

Happy Reading!
Sharmila Das
Editor

All Editorials

Empowering Choices: A Path to Sustainable Consumerism

Exploring the wide array of consumer choices reveals both positive and negative trends that significantly impact the market, the environment, and society. On the positive side, there is an encouraging shift towards informed consumerism, with individuals prioritizing...

Legal Landmark, Fintech Diplomacy, and Progress in India

In a ground-breaking legal development, the Nagpur Bench of the Bombay High Court has made a resounding decision. The Court has nullified the CP Rules, the Selection Committee, and the examination conducted for the selection of Presidents and Members of District and...

A Historic Moment for India and a Global Commitment to Health

History was scripted when The Constitution (One Hundred and Twenty-Eighth Amendment) Bill, 2023, seeking to reserve 33% of seats in Lok Sabha and state Assemblies for women, was passed unanimously by Rajya Sabha, a day after it sailed through Lok Sabha. The passage of...

Addressing India’s Taxpayer Base and Refunds: A Step Forward

India's tax landscape is showing positive signs of growth and participation, as highlighted by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. In the fiscal year 2022-23, 2.24 crore individuals out of the total 7.4 crore taxpayers diligently fulfilled their tax obligations,...

Artificial sweeteners aren’t sweet for your health

Let’s start off with something related to our health, shall we? For those of you who choose diet coke or zero-calorie soda as a means to control your weight, there is some concerning information. The World Health Organization (WHO) recently released new guidelines...

Controversies and many more

A recent video on the super high sugar content of Bournvita by a social media influencer went viral. The Mondelez India-owned health drink company dismissed charges of excessive sugar content, calling the video "unscientific" and accusing it of "distorting facts and...

Is India Growing?

The Union Health Ministry is preparing to alter the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act, a significant step that will require OTT (over-the-top) platforms or streaming services to display health warnings during smoking scenes in motion pictures and Web series...

 ‘India: Growing by leaps and bounds’.

Let's start off on a positive note, shall we? An International Monetary Fund (IMF) official predicted that India would contribute 15% to world growth in 2023. In the approaching year, it is anticipated that China and India will each contribute 50% to global growth...

Some Exciting News

Let’s start off with something encouraging, shall we? According to data made public by the Ministry of Statistics & Programme Implementation (MoSPI), India's retail inflation rate reduced slightly from the previous month and continued to fall below the Reserve...

A New India

Let’s start off with some good news, shall we? According to the most recent monthly Refinitiv-Ipsos Primary Consumer Sentiment Index (PCSI) report, consumer sentiment among urban Indians has improved and increased by 1.1 percentage points in December 2022. Amit...

Changing demographics in India

Let’s start off with some good news, shall we? According to the trade group Consumer Electronics and Appliances Manufacturers Association (CEAMA), the Indian Appliances and Consumer Electronics (ACE) market is anticipated to nearly double over the next three years,...

Dynamic subtle changes in India

The Unified Payments Interface (UPI) has changed the country's payment system, thereby promoting economic growth. Since UPI was first launched, life has become easier. UPI is currently accepted everywhere, including by taxi drivers, valet parking services, malls, toll...

Positive Economic Outlook

23 per cent of the world's milk production is contributed by the dairy sector of India. It ranks first across the globe. But the rising cases of the Lumpy Skin Disease have thrown the nation out of gear. The lumpy skin disease is a viral infection commonly occurring...

Plastic Straw Ban On: Fight against Pollution

The Central Government has banned 19 single-use plastic items from July 1, including straws. This ban has led to companies including Dabur India Ltd. and Parle Agro Pvt, racing to replace them with imported paper versions. Of the 380 million tons of plastic produced...

Agneepath and Agniveer: In a Nutshell

In a historic decision by the Union Cabinet, an attractive recruitment scheme for Indian youth to serve in the Armed Forces has been introduced with the name AGNEEPATH. The youth selected under the Agneepath scheme will be categorised as Agniveers. With the...

Cut in Fuel Prices, Subsidy on Cylinders: Easing the Burden

With the announcement by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman of the cut in fuel prices, the citizens of India as a whole heaved a sigh of relief. With the price of petrol coming down by ₹ 9.5, diesel getting cheaper by ₹ 7, it is a sharp cut in central excise duty on...

E-commerce complaints tops list in national consumer helpline

Out of the almost 60,000 odd complaints that reach the central government's national consumer helpline (NCH) every month, about 36% is for e-commerce. In 2020, the national helpline received 6, 54,192 grievances of which 28.5% was e-commerce related issues. Banking,...

Is the Budget 2022 Middle Class Friendly?

The Finance Bill 2022 presented by India's Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on February 1 announced measures for a number of sectors. It aimed at boosting growth amidst growing inflation added with the uncertainties of the Covid-19 pandemic. PM Modi hailed the...

Why India is so cryptic about crypto?

Well, true!  Cryptos have been quite popular in India and now with the imposition of 30% tax on all digital incomes including NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens) and cryptos made the investors community lose a heart again. My introduction to crypto happened just a few...

The other Covid Effets

When we just thought we are in the endemic stage and the worst is over, we’ve variant, Omicron now. It has hit the world. India too has reported 21 cases so far including 7 in Jaipur, 1 in Delhi, 11 in Maharashtra and 2 in Karnataka as I write this piece. I’m sure the...

Festivals lighted up consumption. But will it last?

Festivals, especially Deepawali, the festival that Indians observe to celebrate the return of Ram from his 14 years of exile reminded us of the triumph of good over evil. Indians across the regions celebrate the day differently, however, the ethos across the country...

Veganism and India

FSSAI’s recent Vegan logo announcement is a remarkable development in the popularity of vegan foods in India. Going by different reports, it comes to a surprising fact that there was a 47% rise in the vegan related searches in the year 2020. The growing interests for...

What can we learn from Olympians?

What can we learn from Olympians?To be resilient should be the first lesson irrespective of what work you are doing. Irrespective of the time and severity, you will be knocked down at some point and the mental strength to bounce back and punch a blow on the "face of...

The Vaccination Mirage

There was a popular tweet doing the rounds lately. It said, India’s vaccination drive is like going for a marriage. At first, the groom wasn’t ready for it, then there was no suitable match and then the groom, because of not getting what he wanted, had to settle with...

Why consumption is good

There is an amazing capacity of consumption. I feel, we consumers are the happiest souls when we consume something of our choice. Be it a slice of pizza, driving a newly launched SUV, consuming content (print and digital both or mere a book). The bottom line is- our...

Stories of hope in pandemic

The deadliest is again on us. It is dangerous than ever before, took lives of thousands already and showing no sign of settling soon. Where there are numerous stories floating every day on nonavailability of many healthcare facilities, medicines, oxygen and doctors;...

Enquire Now

    X
    Enquire Now