Education the only tool that takes people to greater heights: Minister
At least 10 lakh children in Uttar Pradesh remain out of school every year despite the Right to Education Act being in force for three years, according to P. Chidambaram, Union Finance Minister.
“That three years after the RTE Act was implemented, only 95 per cent or 96 per cent of the children are going to schools in the country is a matter of concern,” he said after inaugurating an indoor stadium constructed with funds from the University Grants Commission at Rajapalayam Raju’s College here on Monday. Stating that there were many reasons for children not going to school in Uttar Pradesh, he said, “Either there are no schools or schools are at far off places. Lack of proper roads and lack of adequate transport facility are other reasons,” he said.
It was a dismal status of the country that several lakh children were not going to schools in the last 60 years since Independence, he said. Education was the only tool that took people of all sections of life to greater heights, he said adding that there was no one example to prove this concept wrong.
Stating that if ten lakh children were out of school every year, the number would add up to one crore in ten years. “When these children grow up, they will remain illiterate throughout their lifespan. If several crore people remain illiterate, they will continue to be in poverty. How can poverty be eradicated in the country with so many illiterate people,” Mr. Chidambaram said.
“A small boy who made 25 paise and 50 paise by distributing newspapers to continue his education, became a scientist and went on to become the President of India. It was not his religion, caste or his siblings, but his education that supported A.P.J. Abdul Kalam to come up in life,” he said.