November 11: National Education Day

Every year, India celebrates National Education Day on November 11. It is also called Rashtriya Shiksha Diwas. The day is celebrated to mark the birth anniversary of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad. He was the first Education Minister of India.

Key Highlights

In 2008, the Ministry of Human Resource Development announced November 11 as the National Education Day. The ministry was recently renamed as Ministry of Education. The ministry in 2020 has Ministry of Education has organised National Education Day programmes at IIT Bombay. The programme mainly discussed about the National Education Policy, 2020.

About Maulana Abul Kalam Azad

Maulana was born in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. Azad’s family relocated to Calcutta to provide him better education.
He served as the Education Minister of independent India between 1947 and 1958. During his service period, he was one of the Congress leaders who established the National Education System. His primary focus was on providing free education to the country. He was awarded the Bharat Ratna in 1992 for his contribution in the field of education and for his service to the country as a freedom fighter.

Maulana’s role in Indian Education System

The contribution of the great leader, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, in building Indian Institute of Technology was remarkable. He was the one who laid the foundation of University Grants Commission. He also believed that primary education should be conveyed only in mother-tongue. The most important literary academies of India were also established during his tenure. The Sangeet Natak Academy, Sahitya Academy and the Lalit Kala Academy were all established under his tenure as the Education Minister. Also, the Indian Council of Cultural Relations were also established under his tenure.


After independence, he focused on imparting information in modern sciences. He started a weekly magazine in Urudu called Al-Hilal that criticised the British Government and its policies. After it was banned, he started another magazine called the “Al-Bagah”. Following this, the British Government banned him under Defence of India Regulations, 1916.


Leave a Reply