National Education Day is celebrated on 11 November every year. The day commemorates the birth anniversary of freedom fighter Maulana Abul Kalam Azad.
In October this year, the UGC issued a release stating: "As a mark of befitting respect to our beloved leader, Ministry of Human Resource Development, Govemment of India vide its letter No.D.O.No.ll-2l2016-Pnl, dated 25th October, 2016, desired that Educational Institutions at all levels would be involved in the celebration of the National Education Day in organizing seminars, symposia, essay writing, elocution competitions, workshops and rallies with banners, cards and slogans on the importance of education and the nation's commitment to all aspects of education".
So why is Azad's birthday celebrated as National Education Day? Read on to find out.
1. On 15 August 1947, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad became the first education minister of independent India. He was a part of the first Nehru ministry.
2. He continued his term in the second Nehru ministry. He served as the education minister for 15 years till 2 February 1958.
3. In his tenure as India's first Minister of Education, Adaz paved the way for women's education with a special emphasis on rural areas. Adult literacy, universal primary education, free and compulsory for all children up to the age of 14 and diversification of secondary education and vocational training are some of his contributions to Indian education system.
4. The first Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) - IIT Kharagpur was established in 1951 under his leadership. It was also declared as an Institute of National Importance, later on.
5. To honour this man and his contributions in the field of education, the Ministry of Human Resource Development, on September 11, 2008 announced that his birthday will be celebrated at the National Education Day in India.