Updated: Thu, 08 Sep 2022 11:21 AM IST
International Literacy Day is celebrated on September 8 every year to spread out the importance of literacy to individuals and communities. On 26th October 1966, the United Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) declared September 8 as International Literacy Day at the 14th UNESCO General Conference. It was first celebrated in 1967.
Literacy is the basic ability of a person to read, write and express himself/herself in society. Literacy is a pillar for innovation which helps in the development of wider society, helps in reducing infant mortality rates, and empowers individuals. It not only helps in development but furthermore impacts the economic growth of any country.
We live in a world with ultra technologies being updated momentarily, still, the Literacy system of our country is on a slow but constant path of growth. According to the reports of the National Survey of India, the Literacy rate of India was recorded at 73% in 2011 and 77.7% in 2022. The literacy rates are low in India because of factors such as high population, poverty and poor health conditions.
As per the Indian Census, amongst the 28 states of India, Kerala has the highest literacy rank whereas Bihar stands at the lowest. The most Literate Union Territory is Lakshadweep with an approximately 91.8% literacy rate. The least in Jammu and Kashmir with a 68.7% literacy rate. Whereas, Delhi being the Capital of the country has a literacy rate of 86.2%.
According to UNESCO, around 775 million people still lack fundamental literacy skills. About 60.7 million children are out of school and some attend school irregularly and then drop out. The repercussions of the pandemic caused nearly 24 million people not to return to formal education, out of which, 11 million are anticipated to be girls and young women.
Regarding the celebrations of International Literacy Day, UNESCO always includes certain themes. The theme of 2022 is Transforming Literacy Learning Spaces to reconsider the salient significance of literacy learning spaces for fostering resilience and guaranteeing high-quality, equitable education for all. This day is celebrated all over the world to spread awareness about literacy.
This day enacts as an opportunity for the governments and the accountable authorities to highlight improvements and advancements in literacy rates and develop a space for people to grab opportunities. The government can plan some breakthrough plans to achieve respectable literacy rates that will eventually benefit society.
Though the literacy rate is a major concern since our Independence, there are many initiatives inaugurated by the Government to improve the literacy rates. Everyone deserves opportunities to learn and grow, so if you get an opportunity, grab it, and don't let it go!