Nov 11 - Azad Birthday - Now National Education Day

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New Delhi, Jul 18 (UNI) Maulana Abul Kalam Azad's birthday, November 11, will henceforth be observed every year as National Education Day without being declared a holiday, it was announced this evening.

''There have been consistent demands from various sections of the society'' for a befitting observance, the Human Resource Development Ministry said in a statement.

The statement recalled Maulana Azad was ''a great freedom fighter, an eminent Educationist and the first Union Minister of Education'' and said several State governments have also supported such a demand.

A stalwart of India's independence struggle, Maulana Azad was regarded as a symbol of Hindu-Muslim unity. He was born in 1888 and died in 1958.

The HRD Ministry ''has decided to commemorate the birthday of this great son of India by recalling his contribution to the cause of education in India,'' the announcement said.

Educational institutions at all levels will be involved in seminars, symposia, essay and elocution competitions, workshops and rallies with banners and slogans stressing literacy and India's commitment to ''all aspects of education,'' it said.

The day will also help focus on Central or private-public initiatives in Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan, in model schools of secondary education, in higher secondary, vocational and higher education sectors, it said.

Industry bodies will be associated in projecting such initiatives and their ''fullest cooperation'' sought in developing human resources in the country, it said.


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