Marriage, domestic work, digital gaps and disrupted income regularly push Indian girls away from formal learning. On the occasion of Girl Child Day, and as schools and colleges reopen across the country, we look at ongoing efforts to bring girls back in touch with education
According to NSO data, 19.2 percent of the total girls enrolled in secondary education dropped out of school between 2017 and 2018. Illustration: Atul Jain
Stuti Yadav* from Malad Malwani, an underdeveloped area in suburban Mumbai, was made to leave school in 2017 and quickly married off by her father to someone in their village in Uttar Pradesh’s Jaunpur. Her mother, who has a hearing and speaking impairment, had no knowledge of this. “I did not want to drop out. I had just passed my ninth grade and wanted to study further,” says the 21-year-old, who was 17 at the time.