Pakistan University Will Give Free Education to Trans People

The university wants to help trans people overcome stigma and become involved in society.

A university in Pakistan announced it will give free education to trans people.

Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU) based in the capital Islamabad was Asia’s first distance learning university.

It’s motto ‘education for all’ helped frame its decision to provide free education to the country’s trans community.

AIOU wanted to help trans people become productive members of society. Trans people will be able to choose any subject to study from matriculation to PhD.

‘There are a lot of stigmas in our society due to which transgenders are shunned by society,’ AIOU Vice-Chancellor Shahid Siddiqui told DawnNews.

‘By offering them free education and training, we hope to make them a part of mainstream society.’

Education for all

AIOU is known in Pakistan for bringing education to people who often are not able to access it, such as women, disabled people and people in jail. The trans scholarship program is an extension of AIOU’s efforts to offer ‘education for all’.

Siddiqui said the university has already started to receive applications to the program.

‘We have decided to launch a programme for the amelioration of transgender people of Pakistan,’ he told The News.

‘Through this programme, we hope to return their long-lost self-respect and dignity to them and make them responsible citizens of the society.

‘We have received a positive response from the community and have already started receiving applications for the programme.’