National Education Day: its history and significance


What is National Education Day?

National Education Day is an annual observance in India to commemorate the birth anniversary of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, the first education minister of independent India, who served from 15 August 1947 until 2 February 1958.

When is this day celebrated?

National Education Day of India is celebrated on the 11th of November every year.

History of National Education Day

The Ministry of Human Resource Development announced on 11 September 2008, “The Ministry has decided to commemorate the birthday of this great son of India by recalling his contribution to the cause of education in India. November 11 every year, from 2008 onwards, will be celebrated as the National Education Day, with declaring it as a holiday.” All educational institutions in the country mark the day with seminars, symposia, essay-writing, elocution competitions, workshops, and rallies with banner cards and slogans on the importance of literacy and the nation’s commitment to all aspects of education.

Some quotes which are popularly used on this day

Here are some inspiring quotes by Maulana Abul Kalam Azad. They are:

  • “We must not for a moment forget, it is a birthright of every individual to receive at least the basic education without which he cannot fully discharge his duties as a citizen.”
  • “One who is not moved by music is unsound of mind and intemperate; is far from spirituality and is denser than birds and beasts because everyone is affected by melodious sounds.”
  • “Science is neutral. Its discoveries can be used equally to heal and to kill. It depends upon the outlook and mentality of the user whether science will be used to create a new heaven on earth or to destroy the world in a common conflagration.”
  • “Educationists should build the capacities of the spirit of inquiry, creativity, entrepreneurial and moral leadership among students and become their role model.”
  • “Climbing to the top demands strength, whether it is to the top of Mount Everest or to the top of your career.”
  • “No program of national education can be appropriate if it does not give full consideration to the education and advancement of one-half of the society that is the women.”
  • “Art is the education of emotions and is thus an essential element in any scheme of truly national education. Education, whether at the secondary or at the university stage, cannot be regarded as complete if it does not train our faculties to the perception of beauty.”
  • “Be more dedicated to making solid achievements than in running after swift but synthetic happiness.”
  • “You have to dream before your dreams can come true.”
  • “To succeed in your mission, you must have single-minded devotion to your goal.”

Significance of National Education Day

On National Education Day, India remembers Maulana Azad’s contributions to nation-building. The day is seen as to remember Abul Kalam’s contribution in laying the foundations of the education system in an independent India.

November 11 is celebrated every year in schools by conducting various interesting and informative seminars, symposia, essay-writing, rallies, etc. Students and teachers come together to talk about the importance of literacy and the nation’s commitment to all aspects of education.

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