Following the World Economic Forum Report which ranked Pakistan at 151th position among 153 countries on global gender parity index, the Vice Chancellor University of Okara (UO) Professor Dr Muhammad Zakria Zakar, while talking to the media, told that the district-based young universities have the potential to reduce gender gap and increase gender participation by providing opportunities of higher education to the women of marginalized sections and rural areas.
He was referring to a recent survey, conducted at the UO, which revealed that there are about 75 percent such female students who, if not provided higher education facility at the district level, could not be able to continue their education and thus, they would be excluded from the social mainstream.
Dr Zakar argued that we had persistently failed to recognize the importance of gender equality and gender participation in the social and economic development domains.
“It is an established fact that women participation positively contributes to reduce poverty, crime, infant and maternal mortality and child malnutrition. And the women participation in economic and social life could only be increased by improving their access to higher education”, claimed the VC.
He further said that in 21st century where technology driven jobs empower women to generate lot of wealth, our women were still working to collect fodder, take care of cattle or engaged in traditional embroidery.