Phagwara, January , 2019: Women’s Science Congress, as part of of the 106th Indian Science Congress, was kicked off by Union Minister for Textiles Smriti Irani at the Lovely Professional University near here.
This is the eighth chapter of the Women’s Science Congress since it started in 2012. The objective of the Women’s Science Congress is to showcase the work of women scientists. Many leading women scientists and distinguished women from other disciplines are participating in talks and discussions in the Congress.
Women’s Science Congress Kicks off at Lovely Professional University
Speaking after inaugurating the Women’s Science Congress, Union Minister Smriti Irani said that women are facing serious challenges in the world of science. “Only about 14% of the scientists and engineers of the total 2.8 lakh people working in Indian research institutes are women. This shows that there is a male-bias in this field,” she lamented. “Gender bias starts at home when a parent buys a doll for the baby girl and a car or a lego set for the baby boy,” she said urging women to come out of the stereotype.
Majority of the Indian scientific journals or material is in English and most students from rural areas are not very familiar with English language, Smriti Irani said, calling upon the Indian Science Congress Association, the body which organises the Indian Science Congress, to come out with science journals in Indian languages to facilitate scientific fervour among rural students.
Mr Ashok Mittal, Chancellor of the Lovely Professional University, which is hosting the Indian Science Congress, said that his university has ensured gender parity by having more than 50% of women in the staff. “Majority of our senior management team is represented by women in our university,” he added.
Dr Namita Gupta, scientist with the Department of Science and Technology, Dr Purvi Mehta from Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Ms Suja Warrior from Infosys, Dr Shakuntala Das from State University of Newyork are among the women who will deliver lectures on various topics.
Before inaugurating Women’s Science Congress, Mrs Irani also unveiled the 55 feet tall Robot structure ‘Metal Magna’ at the gates of the Lovely Professional University. The Robot structure is made up of 25 tons of steel and was built in 2 months by 50 students from the Mechanical and Civil Engineering departments of Lovely Professional University.