Bangalore: In response to a significant drop in the enrollment of Muslim students in higher education, the Karnataka chapter of the Students Islamic Organisation of India (SIO) has initiated a state-wide Higher Education drive campaign from January 16 to February 15. The campaign aims to raise awareness among youth, particularly focusing on Central Universities and other prestigious institutions. Data from UDISE+ and AISHE revealed an alarming 8.5% decline in Muslim student enrollment in higher education during the 2020–21 academic year, dropping from 21 lakh to 19.21 lakh.
During the campaign launch at Hoode on January 19, SIO Karnataka President Rameez EK stressed the importance of empowering students in the community to pursue higher education. He highlighted the need for an inclusive environment and emphasized that earning a degree alone is insufficient. Rameez called for universal access to postsecondary education, urged the government to ensure student safety, and encouraged the selection of central universities.
The campaign’s objectives include informing minority and economically disadvantaged students about higher education and fostering parent-student cooperation. Dr. Dada Hayat Bawaji, a recent Ph.D. graduate from Kannada University in Hampi, was honored at the event, emphasizing the urgent need for such initiatives to empower individuals across social, political, and economic domains through higher education.