Last Updated on 11 November 2023 | National Education Day is celebrated every year on 11 November in India to mark the birth anniversary of Maulana Abul Kalam, the first Education Minister of Independent India. The first National Education Day was inaugurated on 11 November 2008 by the then President of India Pratibha Patil at Vigyan Bhawan. Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, the first Education Minister of India, who laid the foundation of Indian education and played an important role in improving the education of the country. Maulana Abul Kalam served as the country’s first education minister during the government of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru from 1947 to 1958.
Abul Kalam’s Early Life
The real name of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad is Abul Kalam Ghulam Muhiyuddin. But he is known only by the name Maulana Azad. Maulana Azad was one of the main fighters during the freedom struggle. Maulana Azad was a great scientist, a politician and a poet. Maulana Abul Kalam Azad was born in 1888 in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. His mother was an Arab and the daughter of Sheikh Mohammad Zahir Watri and Azad’s father, Maulana Khairuddin, was a Bengali Muslim of Afghan origin who came to Arabia during the Sepoy Mutiny and migrated to Mecca and settled there.
When Abul Kalam was two years old, he came back to Calcutta with his family in 1890. Azad first learned Arabic and Persian and then learned philosophy, geometry, mathematics and algebra. He also learned English, world history and politics through self-study. Azad knew Hindi and English languages as well.
Maulana Azad was a great advocate of women’s education. It was on his initiative that the University Grants Commission (UGC) was established in 1956 in India. Sangeet Natak Akademi, Sahitya Akademi and Lalit Kala Akademi were formed in the early 1950s under the leadership of Maulana Azad. Prior to this, he had formed the ‘Indian Council for Cultural Relations’ in 1950 itself.
Significant Contribution of Maulana Abul Kalam & Achievements
He strongly advocated for women’s education. If the credit for bringing the modern education system present in today’s time goes to any person, then it only goes to Maulana Abul Kalam. During his tenure as Education Minister, the country’s first IITs, Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), IISc, Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) School of Planning and Architecture and University Grants Commission (UGC) were established. Maulana Azad also promoted research in Eastern education and literature.
He established the Academy of Fine Arts, Sangeet Natak and Sahitya Akademi to develop fine arts and to make social, religious and cultural, inter-linkages in India. He also advocated free and compulsory primary education for children up to 14 years of age.
Journals launched to Promote Hindu-Muslim unity
In 1912, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad started a weekly magazine in Urdu, Al-Hilal, to promote revolutionary recruits among Muslims. Al-Hilal played an important role in building Hindu-Muslim unity after the bloodshed between the two communities following the Morley-Minto Reforms. Al-Hilal became a revolutionary mouthpiece fueling extremist ideas. The government considered al-Hilal to be a propagator of separatist ideas and banned it in 1914.
At the same time, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad started another weekly called Al-Balag with the same mission of propagating Indian nationalism and revolutionary ideas based on Hindu-Muslim unity. In 1916, the government banned this as well and expelled Maulana Abul Kalam Azad from Calcutta and exiled him to Bihar, from where he was released after the First World War in 1920.
Youngest person to serve as President of Indian National Congress
Maulana Abul Kalam Azad supported the non-cooperation movement started by Gandhiji and entered the Indian National Congress in 1920. He was elected as the President of the special session of the Congress in Delhi (1923). At the age of 35, he became the youngest person to serve as the President of the Indian National Congress. Maulana Azad was arrested in 1930 for violating salt laws as part of Gandhi’s Salt Satyagraha. He was kept in Meerut jail for one and a half years. After his release, he again became the President of Congress in 1940 (Ramgarh) and remained in this position till 1946.
Founder of Jamia Millia Islamia University
Maulana Abul Kalam Azad was one of the founding members of Jamia Millia Islamia University, which was originally established in 1920 at Aligarh in the United Provinces of India. They are responsible for shaping the modern education system of the country. The first IITs, IISc, School of Planning and Architecture and University Grants Commission were established during his tenure as Education Minister. Most prominent cultural, literary academies including Sangeet Natak Akademi, Lalit Kala Akademi, Sahitya Akademi as well as Indian Council for Cultural Relations were also created.
Why is National Education Day celebrated on the occasion of Maulana Azad’s birthday?
Maulana Azad was born on 11 November 1888. He is also known as the principal architect of education in independent India. Every year 11 November is celebrated as National Education Day to remember the contribution of Maulana Azad in the field of nation building, institution building and education. Maulana Azad used to say that school is the laboratory which prepares the future citizens of the country. According to historians, Maulana Azad had laid the foundation of higher education and technical and scientific research and education as well as more recently knowledge based industries.
On 11 September 2008, MHRD, Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India declared 11 November as the National Festival of National Education Day. The first National Education Day was inaugurated on 11 November 2008 by the then President of India Pratibha Patil at Vigyan Bhawan.
National Education Day 2023 Theme
The Ministry of Human Resource Development sets a different theme for National Education Day every year. The theme of this year is “Embracing Innovation.” This theme indicates that there is a need to reform the education system and make it adaptable to the current times.
NATIONAL EDUCATION DAY 2023: HISTORY AND SIGNIFICANCE
Education has the most important place in life. The life of every person depends on his education. As education will be given to a person, his life will go on accordingly. Today we are celebrating National Education Day across the country. Every year on November 11, this day is celebrated to commemorate the birth anniversary of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, the first Education Minister of India. Various programs and campaigns are organized on this day to spread awareness about education and to make every person literate.
The day plays an important role in shaping the country’s education system. As a leader, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad emphasised girls’ education and compulsory education for children under the age of 14..He also focused on basic education and thought about technical education that includes vocational training for all children.
NATIONAL EDUCATION DAY 2023 QUOTES
- “A man’s mind, stretched by new ideas, may never return to its original dimensions.”- Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.
- “Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.”- Malcolm X
- “If you think education is expensive, try ignorance”.- Andy McIntyre
- “It is impossible for a man to learn what he thinks he already knows.”- Epictetus
- “Any book that helps a child to form a habit of reading, to make reading one of his deep and continuing needs, is good for him.”- Maya Angelou
- “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”- Mahatma Gandhi
- “Educationists should be able to build creative spaces for inquiry, morality, and leadership for students and become role models for them to follow.”- Maulana Abul Kalam Azad
Knowledge Everyone needs on this National Education Day 2023
Education has a very important place in our life, but saints have told that education is necessary only to recognize the Supreme God. In earlier times, only a special class had the right to education, due to which people did not have any knowledge about the Supreme God described in their own scriptures, But today Sant Rampal Ji Maharaj Ji has written the conclusion of scriptures of all religions in simple language in holy books like Gyan Ganga and The Way of Living due to which it has become easy to recognize God.
The only aim of human life is to attain salvation by doing scripture-based worship, but the modern education system has lowered the standard of people and distracted them from devotion. Therefore, readers are requested to take shelter of Sant Rampal Ji Maharaj Ji and make human life successful by taking spiritual education.
FAQ Regarding National Education Day 2023
National Education Day is celebrated every year to commemorate the birth anniversary of independent India’s first education minister Maulana Abul Kalam Azad
On September 11, 2008 the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) decided to celebrate November 11 as National Education Day annually.
National Education Day is celebrated on 11th November every year in India. This day was declared ‘National Education Day’ by the Ministry of Human Resource Development in 2008 to honor Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, India’s first Education Minister.
National Education Day 2023 theme is “Changing Course, Transforming Education.”
Maulana Abul Kalam Azad was India’s first Education Minister after independence. He played a significant role in forming the national education policy of independent India.