Gujarat’s civil rights organization, Minority Coordination Committee (MCC), has regretted that the state government has refused to observe November 11 as the National Education Day, celebrated every year in the memory of India’s first education minister Maulana Abul Kalam Azad’s contribution in the field of education.
Pointing out that this is not a new development, and that this has been happening for the last several years now, MCC convener Mujahid Nafees, in a letter to Gujarat chief minister Vijay Rupani, said, this is particularly shocking against the backdrop of the fact that the state’s quality of education has been constantly nosediving.
Suspecting that the main reason behind not celebrating November 11 as the National Education Day could be the state government’s anti-minority policy, Nafees said, this day also happens to be the birthday of Azad, who was a prominent freedom fighter and was close to Mahatma Gandhi.
Nafees, who also heads the Gujarat chapter of the Right to Education (RTE) Forum, an all-India education rights network, alleged that the state government is planning to close down as many as 5,223 primary schools. Lack of computer teachers in schools has eroded computer education, there are no playgrounds in 6,921 schools, and there is a a shortage of 20,000 classrooms at the primary level, he added.
Pointing out that the state education department seems to be developing a policy of discrimination in the education sector, Nafees said, “We made a formal request to the state education minister and the chief secretary to observe the National Education Day to observe it on November 11. However, they appear to have ignored our suggestion. It should be investigated as why this happened and punish those those are responsible for adopting a discriminatory policy.