Mukherjee said that the time has come to put in renewed vigour and concerted efforts to improve India's literacy rate and in order to achieve this, the machinery at all levels - national, state, district, block and gram panchayat has to be geared up.
Also to fight against illiteracy, he said that greater public awareness and opinion about this scourge has to be created.
The Union Human Resource Development Minister M M Pallam Raju said that the aim under the Saakshar Bharat should be to achieve 100 percent literacy among women in the age group of 15 to 35 by the year 2017.
He added that the gender gap in 19 states is more than 10 percent. There are 20 states that still have literacy rate below 80 percent.
The average female literacy rate is 58 percent. The Minister expressed the view that there is a need to redouble the efforts to elevate literacy levels, especially among women, SCs, STs and minorities.
The Ministers of State for HRD Shashi Tharoor and Jitin Prasada also spoke at the function.
"The more a society is literate, the more developed it becomes", stated Tharoor. Prasada said that the need of the hour is to link literacy with employability.
Raju also launched the Basic Education programme for adults by releasing the learning material.
The programme was organised by the National Literacy Mission Authority, Ministry of HRD.
--IBNS (Posted on 08-09-2013)