The two-year effort by the government to study the problems faced by the women scientists finally seems to give fruitful results. The new offers by the department of science and technology (DST) holds a lot of promises to ease the working life of women scientists.
The main aim of the attractive offers of the package is to curb the dropouts among women scientists that seem to coincide with marriage and child bearing age. As a part of this, women with children below three years of age will be given opportunities to work from home. Flexible working hours and loans for such women to buy computers are some of the other offers.
'We have a major leak of women exiting science after their post-doctoral research. Many never come back,' said Vineeta Bal, a scientist at the National Institute of Immunology, New Delhi.
'When a promising young woman scientist goes away — it's not just her personal loss, it's a national loss,' Bal added.
DST is also planning to launch residential quarters and crèches with proper facilities in the scientific institutions for the women scientists. Plans to provide a grant of Rs 10 lakh over a period of five years is also on cards. DST is hopeful that these new ventures will help to regain lost talents and retain the women potential in the science field.
We can expect this good news to be announced on International Women's Day, during a two-day conference of women in science to be inaugurated by President Pratibha Patil.