Special councelling sessions on career, healthcare and education have started with an initiative of the Malviya National Institute of Technology (MNIT), Jaipur, students who regularly visit small towns and villages to hold workshops for the youths. Ganpat Yadav, a second year student of MNIT and his group started a project, Polishing Village Diamonds (PVD)', to empower village youths after being aware of an inspirational job of a group of engineering students working for rural development in all National Institute of Technology (NIT) across the country under the banner of National Institute for Technology for Villages (Nvil). Yadav is a resident of Mundro village in Sawai Madhopur district. Being well acquainted with the problems faced by rural students, he came-up with the project to create awareness on the various career opportunities available after Class XII. Currently, the group has 13 members. The group held many counselling sessions in nearby villages. “The high drop-out rate in villages is attributed to the lack of job opportunities for village students,” said Yadav sharing his experience. His group has also tied up with government schools and civic bodies in the villages visited and has plans to hold workshops for teachers. Among their activities is conducting street plays to educate farmers, women and students on various government policies meant for them. “There is clear divide between the urban poor and the rural poor. The latter is completely devoid of schemes in the absence of civil society support,” Yadav said. Pawan, a member of the group, said they have devised a quiz competition with the help of a psychologist to expand the imagination of students. “We have identified some villages with high drop-out rates. This quiz competition will be introduced in these villages at the start of admission season,” he said. The group is also chalking out plan to popularise RTE Act in villages. They felt that this Act meant for the economically disadvantaged groups, primarily live in the rural areas and are left out in absence of an awareness campaign. “This (RTE Act) is the biggest tool for the rural people to empower themselves by sending their wards to premier schools,” Yadav said. The creative arts society of MNIT has extended its support to the group. The society will bear expenses on posters, banners and travel allowances.
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