Families in India which do not allow educated women to pursue their dream careers are examples of "first grade tragedy" as the country misses the opportunity to harness their talent, Telecom Secretary Aruna Sundararajan said today.
Citing example of her home state Kerala which leads the nation in terms of literacy, Sundararajan said women there are highly educated but families get them married after they acquire certain degrees.
"In Kerala, we have peculiar syndrome where women outnumber men as students but majority of them never go out to realise their professional dreams because their parents believe that once they have acquired a degree then they should get married. That is a first grade tragedy because number of people in India who get access to higher education is very small," she said at the Indira Gandhi Delhi Technical University for Women (IGDTUW).
The Telecom Secretary launched 'Cisco thingQbator' makerspace to drive innovation in the areas of Internet of Things (IoT) and other emerging digital technologies.
Sundararajan said that McKinsey in a study has said that India could add full one-third more GDP to the current level of USD 2.5 trillion if the country increases participation of women workforce by 10 per cent in the entire labour force.
"They (McKinsey) said that India more than any country in the world has more to gain and more at stake from not letting its women participation. The number of women who get access to higher education is extremely small. The fact that country is unable to harness their talent is extremely sad," she said.
The telecom secretary said that India is on the verge of becoming USD 1 trillion digital economy within the next five years and there is an important role of young women in catalysing this.
The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) will play the role of mentor organisation for the Cisco incubator being set up in IGDTUW. The collaboration between DoT and Cisco will help in providing direction to the students by helping them identify problems and come up with relevant solutions with the help of mentors.
Sundararajan said that Silicon Valley can give technology platform for use but technology is required to solve deep rooted problems from people of the country.
Cisco India and SAARC for Managing Director Public Affairs Harish Krishnan said that the incubator is aimed at enabling students to get hands on with technology and conceive digital solutions to local problems.
(This article has not been edited by Zeebiz editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)