India expects massive growth in literacy

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New Delhi, Oct 7 (UNI) The massive investment in primary education and higher allocation for adult education in the 11th plan are going to boost literacy significantly in the country, Minister of State' for Human Resource Developoment D Purundeswari has said.

The overall growth rate in the 7+ age group was 12.63 per cent, which is the highest compared to the earlier decennial censuses, she said.

The Minister was speaking at a conference on adult education that began in Seoul yesterday.

''I have no doubt that you will share my optimism of our capability to achieve significant improvements in literacy rates,'' she said.

Dr Purundeswari was chosen as chairperson for a session on Building Equitable and Sustainable Societies in Asia and the Pacific-The Challenge to Adult Learning', during the three day International Conference for the Asia Pacific region.

This Conference is being organised by UNESCO and hosted by Republic of Korea. This Conference is one of the five regional UNESCO Conferences that will take place in 2008-09 in preparation of the 6th International Conference on Adult Education (CONFENTIA VI) to be held in Brazil next year.

Addressing more than 200 delegates from 80 countries, Ms Purandeswari highlighted the importance of India's commitment for making literacy and continuing education an instrument of social transformation leading towards an egalitarian social System.

Explaining the successful journey in persuit of the EFA goals for elementary education, she recalled the progress in literacy rates that India achieved during 1991-2001.

Chairing the session for the group of South Asia on 'Discussion of Key Issues - Trends, Challenges (Afghanistan, Bhutan, Bangladesh, India, Iran, Nepal, Pakistan and Srilanka), she mentioned that India was highly concerned about the areas of exclusion of vast number of people, which forms the basic challenges of literacy.

Ms Purundeswari was also elected as vice chairperson for one of the plenaries on Regional Synthesis report on CONFENTIA-VI.

She also delivered a speech on 'Participation and inclusion for equity and sustainable development today during a session chaired by Mr Koichiro Matsuura, Director General, UNESCO CONFENTIA VI (6th International Conference on Adult Education) will be held in Belem, Brazil from May 19 to 22, 2009 and would be preceded by five Regional Preparatory Conferences, programmed to thematic focus of CONFINTEA VI but adapted to the respective regional specificies .

The Preparatory Conference in Seoul would identify and discuss the main issues, trends and challenges related to Adult Learning and Education, would discuss and disseminate relevant practices and innovations and synthesize National Reports on Adult Education into a single report.

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