Kolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday launched the year-long celebration on the occasion of 175 years of foundation of the Bethune Collegiate School.
Stating that the sapling, planted 175 years ago, is now a banyan tree, Banerjee said nobody used to think of women education at that era.
Harping on women empowerment and women education, the Chief Minister opined that no society can thrive if the girls are not educated and empowered.
Reciting a poem of Nazrul Islam, Banerjee said men and women are all equal. Girls should come forward in every sphere of life, she added.
Remembering Rabindranath Tagore, Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay, Raja Rammohan Roy and Vidyasagar, Banerjee said, ” Bengal is the soil of great minds. Bengal’s history is the history of pride. ”
She also announced the prestigious”Banga Ratna’ for the esteemed school and said, ” I am honoured to be a part of this programme. ”
174 years ago John Elliot Drinkwater Bethune, the then President of the Education Council of India, established ‘ Calcutta Female School ” and took a remarkable initiative towards spread of education amongst women on May 7, 1849, which is presently known as”Bethune Collegiate School “.
This noble initiative of educating women of that era brought significant changes in their lives and empowered them to be pioneers of the society.