Patna: Patna Women’s College (PWC) is all set to become Bihar’s first women’s university with chief minister Nitish Kumar making an announcement to the effect at the annual day function of the city’s premier college for girls on its campus here on Thursday. “It would be a matter of honour not just for the college but also for the state if PWC becomes Bihar’s first women’s university,” the CM said.
Asking education minister P K Shahi, who was also present at the event, to look into the modalities and facilitate the process, Kumar said he always put emphasis on educating girls. “I pledge my government’s full support for converting PWC into a university,” he said amid thunderous applause.
The CM’s announcement followed the college principal Sr Doris D’Souza’s plea that developing PWC into the state’s maiden women’s university was the need of the daughters of the state. “Founded in 1940, PWC is the first women’s college of the state. Now it should be developed as the first women’s university on the lines of SNDT Women’s University-Mumbai, the first of its type in India,” D’Souza pleaded to the CM while delivering her welcome address.
Saying that PWC was unimaginable without present principal Sr D’Souza, Kumar said, “I have got to know Sr D’Souza would retire in the next ten months. I suggest she become the first vice-chancellor of the proposed university.”
It was Kumar’s maiden visit to the college’s annual function. As the college students cheered at the announcement, the CM added in a lighter vein, “Even the students and parents are endorsing my view.”
Talking to TOI, a visibly elated D’Souza later said the process of setting up the university would start soon and it should be completed in a year or two. “We have been demanding it for many years and I am very happy that it would become a reality now.”
The CM also promised Rs two crore for the establishment of a ‘central research laboratory’ in the college and inaugurated an e-library on the college campus. Five students of the college received ‘Principal’s honours’ on the occasion. They are Sudha Kerketta (outgoing premier), Komal Kriti (best cabinet), Divya Lahiri (best stage artist), Swati Kumari (sports outdoor champion) and Khushboo (sports indoor champion).
The college is also set to start postgraduate courses in business administration, commerce, environmental science, mass communication, English, psychology, geography, political science and education from the coming academic session.
The students presented a colourful cultural programme featuring folk, western and classical dance performances as well as qawwali on the occasion. Also present were Patna University VC Arun Kumar Sinha, Aryabhatt Knowledge University VC S N Guha, principal secretary (education) Amarjeet Sinha and principal secretary to the CM Anjani Kumar Singh.