Radheshyam mulls survey to ascertain number of illiterate persons

IMPHAL,8th Sep: Observing that literacy is the foundation for advancement of a society, education minister Thokchom Radheshyam has stressed the need for an extensive survey to ascertain the number of illiterate persons in the state so that steps could be taken up to make them literate. The minister was speaking as chief guest of the celebration of International Literacy Day, 2018 held at Manipur State Film Development Society (MSFDS) Auditorium, Imphal on Saturday. Department of Adult Education & State Literacy Mission Authority jointly organised the event under the theme ‘Literacy and Skill Development’.

Radheshyam said that illiteracy is the biggest obstacle to human development. There is need to create mass awareness to increase literacy rate of the state as it is only 76.92 per cent with gender gap of 13.32 per cent, and to catch up with the ranking of neighbouring state Mizoram which stood third in the national literacy ranking at 91.33 per cent and gender gap of only 4 per cent.

He also emphasised that school dropouts need to be encouraged to resume formal education. Every household has a student and if the students are given assignment as part of their school project to literate the illiterate adults of their family this could do wonder in spreading the light of literacy in the society, he said, while urging students to unite and work for the development and progress of the country.

Higher & School education commissioner H Deleep said that illiteracy is like a disease that can be cured through mass awareness on the importance of literacy. Literacy, if addressed, at school level with a little extra care and effort, will be efficient enough to overcome the challenge. The target to increase literacy rate of the state should be at par with the state or developed country with higher literacy rate, he maintained.

While highlighting the importance of literacy, adult education commissioner Th Gopen said that the issue of literacy is a key component of the UN's Sustainable Development Goals and UN's 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. This year's theme explores integrated approaches that simultaneously support the development of literacy and skills, to ultimately improve people’s lives and work and to contribute to equitable and sustainable societies. Certificate of appreciation were also distributed to eight volunteer teachers for their contribution in “Let’s learn Meetei Mayek”.

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