Awantipora: The Islamic University of Science and Technology celebrated International Women’s Day, which witnessed wide participation of students, scholars, faculty, and staff. The function was presided over by Prof. Shakil Ahmed Romshoo (Vice-Chancellor, IUST). Prof. Parveena Pandit, (Consultant, Admissions and Academic Affairs, Central University of Kashmir), Prof. Deeba I Sarmad (Dean Cluster University of Srinagar), and Dr. Shabnam Bashir (Senior Consultant Breast, Colorectal, and Peritoneal Surface Malignancies) were special invitees on this occasion.
In his address, Prof. Romshoo talked about the importance of this day and the need for dismantling the inherited biases plaguing our society against women. He emphasized the need of implementing a gender-favorable policy framework for uplifting women. Highlighting the role of educational institutions in furthering women empowerment, the Vice Chancellor stressed that education is an empowering tool that paves the way for inclusive and sustainable development. Referring to this year’s Women’s Day theme ‘DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality’, he said, that the use of technology helps in transcending the boundaries and breaking of glass-ceiling that traditionally undermined women.
In her address, highlighting the challenges faced by women at professional and personal levels, Prof. Deeba Sarmad, said that programs like these play an instrumental role in spreading awareness and celebrating women’s empowerment. She identified the initiatives that are needed to do away with gender disparity and achieve an equitable world. She also stressed that women need to overcome hesitancy in taking up higher responsibilities as they are second to none.
Dr. Shabnam Bashir gave a detailed presentation highlighting the need of embracing equity to envision a better society, free from gender discrimination and breaking traditional stereotypes that confine women to particular roles. She also talked about the problems encountered by women in accessing health care and the consequences of gender bias.
Prof. Parveen Akhtar Pandit said that women were historically considered meek and docile, but despite the challenges, they have proved their mettle in all walks of life. She said that respect towards women must begin at home, and educational institutions must imbibe values among the youth respecting women’s dignity.
Prof. Romshoo complimented Dr. Ruheela Hassan and her editorial team for bringing out the third issue of the university community newspaper ‘Naad’ which was released on this occasion along with a special women’s Day Radio Series of Peshkadam produced by the Department of Journalism and Mass Communication.
The event was coordinated by Shaiqa Nasreen (Assistant Professor, Department of Electronics and Communication) under the ambit of Dean Students IUST. Welcoming the guests and the participants, Dr. Asifa Baba, Dean Students IUST talked about the importance of the day and throw light on its historical perspective.