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National Education Day 2018: Remembering The Legend, Maulana Azad

PRERNA YADAV | 0
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| November 11 , 2018 , 10:17 IST

National Education Day is celebrated on November 11 as an annual observance in India to commemorate the birth anniversary of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, the first education minister of independent India.

Maulana's eventful life was packed with outstanding achievements in diverse fields. He was a towering figure on the Indian Political scene and a scholar rated high in the realms of Urdu literature.

He firmly believed in universal primary education, free and compulsory education for all children up to the age of 14, vocational training and technical education.

Perhaps this is the realisation of his dreams that today free and compulsory education is being provided as the fundamental right to children between the ages of 6 and 14.

He is also credited with the establishment of Indian Institutes Of Technology and the foundation of University Grants Commission which is responsible to supervise and advance the higher education in the nation.

Maulana was not just an educationist but a dogged freedom fighter too. Azad became the leader of the Khilafat Movement, during which he came into close contact with the Indian leader Mahatma Gandhi. Azad became an enthusiastic supporter of Gandhi's ideas of non-violent civil disobedience and worked to organise the non-co-operation movement in protest of the 1919 Rowlatt Acts.

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Amidst communal turmoil following the partition of India, he worked for religious harmony and worked towards Hindu Muslim unity. He upheld the pull of secular and democratic values.

The objective of celebrating National Education Day is to strengthen our educational institutions and to raise the quality of education to greater heights, as Maulana Azaad had inspired through his humanist's outlook. He is also credited with promoting girls education in India.

“A very brave and gallant gentleman, a finished product of the culture that, in these days, pertains to few,” was how Jawaharlal Nehru had described Azad. He was posthumously conferred the Bharat Ratna in 1992 but the highest tribute to this legend couldn't have been better than his birth anniversary being celebrated as the National Education Day.