Union education minister, Dharmendra Pradhan, informed the Lok Sabha yesterday that the percentage of women graduates in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) subjects is higher than those of developed nations like the US, UK, Germany and France. The minister shared the data from the All India Survey on Higher Education (AISHE) and the World Bank, in response to a written question submitted to his office, and revealed that at the tertiary level of education, Indian women in STEM have been outshining those from other nations during certain years.The data shows that Indian women graduates in STEM in 2016 accounted for 42.72 per cent of graduates in the field, while the US had 33.99 per cent, Germany had 27.14 per cent, the UK had 38.10 per cent, France had 31.81 per cent, and Canada had 31.43 per cent, during the same year. This trend continued in 2017 and 2018, when the percentage of women graduates in STEM was 43.93 per cent and 42.73 per cent respectively.The AISHE data also revealed that while the number of Indian men graduating in STEM decreased from 12.48 lakh in 2017-2018 to 11.88 lakh in 2019-2020, the number of women graduating in STEM increased from 10 lakh to 10.56 lakh during the same period. The minister also shared data from the World Bank, which showed that at least in 2016, the number of women graduates in STEM was higher than those provided by other nations.The government under the Department of Science and Technology has taken several steps to increase the participation of women in STEM for higher education, the minister said. This includes the implementation of women-exclusive schemes like Knowledge Involvement Research Advancement through Nurtuting (KIRAN, to encourage women in the field of science and technology. He also mentioned that a mobility programme which helps address the relocation of women scientists, the Indo-US Felowship for Women in STEMM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Medicine), and the Consolidation of University Research through Innovation and Excellence in Women Universities (CURIE), have all helped enhance Indian womens participation in research and development in the field.