International Literacy Day 2020 | UPSC

International Literacy Day 2020 | UPSC


Ministry of Education celebrates 54th International Literacy Day Celebration-2020 today

      WHY IN NEWS:

New literacy scheme ‘Padhna Likhna Abhiyan’ will be a leap forward to achieve the goal of total Literacy before the target year 2030– Education Minister

MINISTRY? :- Ministry of Human Resource Development
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3: Education : Human Resource


For PRELIMS go through aim , theme and significance of this event .

For MAINS take a glimpse of events occurred in past and also the efforts in line with education by the ministry .


Despite the progress made, literacy remains a challenge with “at least 773 million adults worldwide lacking basic literacy skills -UN



International Literacy Day (ILD) 2020 will focus on Literacy teaching and learning in the COVID-19 crisis and beyond with a focus on the role of educators and changing pedagogies.


The theme will highlight literacy learning in a lifelong learning perspective and therefore mainly focus on youth and adults.


  • The celebration is to determine the future course of action which needs to be taken to eradicate scourge of illiteracy in the country.

International Literacy Day 2020 will provide an opportunity to reflect on and discuss how innovative and effective pedagogies can be implemented. 

  • These teaching methodologies can be used in youth and adult literacy programmes to face the pandemic and beyond.
  • The Day will also give an opportunity to analyse the role of educators, as well as effective policies, systems, governance and measures that can support educators and learning.
  • UNESCO will initiate a collective global discussion to reimagine the literacy teaching and learning of youth and adults in the post-Covid-19 era towards the achievement of the SDG4.

International Literacy Day 2020 | UPSC


  • Ministry of Education has made efforts for eradication of illiteracy in the country over the years.
  • Still India has a sizeable number of illiterates which have to be literate in attaining a target of achieving 100% literacy before the target year 2030.


  • It is hoped that the new literacy scheme PadhnaLikhnaAbhiyan is going to be a leap forward to achieve the goal of Total Literacy by 2030.
  • The principal target of the programme is to impart functional literacy and numeracy to 57 lakh non-literate and non-numerate adults in both rural and urban areas across the country in the age group of 15 years and above.

This target mostly comprises Women, Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, Minorities and other Disadvantaged Groups.

  • In the scheme, among others, priority will be given to Districts with female literacy rates less than 60%, as per latest Census.
  • Under the new scheme Convergence with projects of M/o Rural Development (MGNREGA), Skill Development, Culture, Information Technology, Finance, Sports and Youth Welfare (NYK), schemes of NCC and NSS, NGOs/Civil Society & CSR sector will be taken up.
  • Formation and involvement of SHGs, Voluntary & User Groups and other community based organizations will also be encouraged.


  • SAAKSHAR BHARAT : Ctizens and other stakeholders to join hands in transforming India to a fully literate society making our country Saakshar BharatAatmanirbhar Bharat.
  • NATION EDUCATION POLICY : For streamlining school and higher education in India by 2040 .
  • DIKSHA– The nation’s digital infrastructure for states/UTs for providing QR coded Energized Textbooks for all grades, MOOCs courses, and quality e-content for school education for students, teachers (One Nation, One Digital Platform).
  • SWAYAM PRABHA– One earmarked TV channel per class from 1 to 12 (One Class, One Channel)
  • SWAYAM– Online courses in MOOCS format for Open school or NIOS
  • DAISY- Special e-content for visually and hearing impaired : Developed on Digitally Accessible Information System (DAISY) and in sign language on NIOS website/YouTube
  • ITPAL : Online Coaching: ITPAL for IITJEE/NEET preparation
  • NATIONAL TEST ABHYAAS : It is a personalized adaptive learning application for students enrolling in competitive examinations conducted by the National testing agency.
  • NIOS : It has developed more than 270 videos in sign language across 7 subjects to provide educational access to learners at secondary level and Yoga courses.
  • MUKT VIDYA VANI : Internet radio is an audio service that is accessible from anywhere in the world. Mukt Vidya Vani (MVV) i.e. Open Education Radio facility will provision educational and informational content for better learning.
  • For state wise efforts click here.


  • International Literacy Day (ILD) is celebrated on 8th September every year all over the world.
  • The celebration of ILD started following a recommendation of the World Conference of Ministers of Education on the Eradication of Illiteracy which met in Tehran in September 1965.
  • The Conference recommended that 8th September, the date of the inauguration of the Conference, be proclaimed International Literacy Day and be observed world-wide.
  • UNESCO in 14th Session of its General Conference held in Paris in November 1966, formally proclaimed 8th September as International Literacy Day.

Since then, UNESCO has celebrated International Literacy Day with the aim to sensitize and mobilize international public opinion and to elicit their interest and active support for literacy activities.


  • In India, literacy and particularly Adult literacy has been a national priority since independence.

With a view to eradicate illiteracy and impart functional literacy and lifelong education to adult education, National Literacy Mission was launched by Government of India in 1988.

  • Since then, India has been celebrating International Literacy Day on 8th September to reaffirm its national commitment to achieve goal and objectives of literacy .
  • This also expresses solidarity with international community in its efforts to eradicate illiteracy.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

  • With less than a decade to go before the SDG deadline, the world is facing an education funding crisis that will be further exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Entire generations are at risk, disproportionately impacting the most vulnerable.

While education is clearly a victim of the pandemic, it is also the solution to the longer-term recovery. 

  • States should prioritizing investment in education as a matter of urgent public good.

Mahatma Gandhi once observed, “Illiteracy is a sin and shame and must be eradicated”.

     SOURCES:THE HINDU & PIB | International Literacy Day 2020 | UPSC


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