11th November, 2014, was celebrated as the National Education Day in the country to mark the birth anniversary of India's great freedom movement leader Maulana Abul Kalam Azad. On the occasion, President of India Shri Pranab Mukherjee, Minister of Human Resource Development, Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani, Minister of Minority Affairs, Dr. Najma A. Heptulla, Minister of State, Human Resource Development, Shri Upendra Kushwaha and Minister of State, Human Resource Development, Prof (Dr.) Ram Shankar Katheria paid floral tributes to the great visionary and the first Education Minister of Independent India.
The celebration of National Education Day was marked by the introduction of a slew of new initiatives by the Ministry of HRD such as-
"¢ "Saksham" - a college level scholarship for differently abled, needy and meritorious children.
"¢ "Pragati" - a scholarship for girl students who are pursuing technical education at college level.
"¢ "SAMAVAY" (Skill Assessment Matrix for Vocational Advancement of Youth) provided by aSkill Credit Framework document. SAMAVAY allows multiple pathways between Vocational education - skills, education and job markets.
"¢ "Know your College Portal" - an application developed for helping a prospective student make a valued judgment of the college he / she wishes to join by providing him / her the necessary information about the college.
"¢ "Unnat Bharat Abhiyan" -Higher educational institutions to collaborate with the people of rural India in identifying development challenges and evolving appropriate solutions for accelerating sustainable growth.
Expressing her views on the occasion, Minister of Human Resource Development, Smt Smriti Zubin Irani, recalled Maulana Abul Kalam Azad's incredible contribution towards nation building and in the sphere of education. Reiterating the quintessential role of teachers in the education system, Smt. Irani said that they should not merely be concerned with 'INCOME' but also the 'OUTCOME' of the education imparted by them, in order to help improve the quality of education.
Reminiscing about Maulana Azad's ideologies, Dr. Najma Heptullah said that a pragmatic approach, that coalesces modernity into tradition and syncronises our inherent traditional strengths with modern day needs without losing our values, is the need of the hour. These were the kind of views professed by Maulanaji, which were much ahead of the times he lived in. Maulanaji had advised her to not only to seek higher education but also be adequately adept in the chosen field so that people recognize you by your competence and not by your family, religion or area.
Recalling Maulana Azad's unparalleled contributions in nation-building, institution-building and educational space, Shri Pranab Mukherjee, said that Schools are the laboratory which produce future citizens of the country. Hence, it is imperative to ensure that quality education is delivered to the students.
The welcome address was delivered by Shri Satya N. Mohanty, Secretary (Higher Education). The vote of thanks was presented by Shri R. Bhattacharya, Secretary (School Education & Literacy).