My mother experienced this incident which carried a serious note on the concept of Literacy. It was in Chennai quite a few years back. One shop keeper was quite offended at that time in arguing with some one regarding some matter. His ego got hurt because he was literate…according to him. Referring to that literacy, he even kept arguing with every one coming to his shop. My mother and my family members were also got victimized for his misbehavior. He was repeatedly announcing that he should not be treated simply as a shop keeper since he was quite literate….which slowly started irritation with every one concerned out there. Then, my cousin asked him about his qualification, because every body was becoming very curious to know about it. Then he proudly replied that he could sign his complete name!!!!!!
Kerala is standing proudly in the number one position in literacy in the current year with 93.91% followed by Lakshadweep with 92.28% which is followed by our nearest Mizoram with 91.58. My home land Assam is at the 26tth position with the 73.18% only.
But I have some queries on my way about the definition of literacy. Literacy means those who can sign their name or those who have the minimum qualification for applying any Government job????? In Kerala, so far I got informed that every body can read and write in their mother language. If literacy counts in that way, then I can surely say that the literacy percentage should be decreased in case of my home land. It is really very embarrassing to say that the Assamese people are not interested in their own mother tongue. How many of us can read and write properly ANY THING in our own mother tongue is quite doubtful. If the literacy counts with respect to the mother tongue, then the percentage will be decreased automatically without any second thought.
Language learning should not be a barrier for the development of our own personality. If every body will be conscious about their own languages, then the fashion of ignoring our language will leave their place itself straight away…regardless where you are, what you are.
My once neighbor was quite surprised to see the girls’ literacy in Assam. According to her, in their place, the girls are not given so much importance in study. They prefer to give them the lessons on household jobs rather than education. But she had noticed that in Assam, maximum girls are educated…educated means highly educated, according to her. Most of the Assamese girls have completed their study up to Mater degree which is very rare in other parts of the country.
It is right…we, the Assamese people give the equal importance to both the girls and boys. There are not any branch in Education, which becomes one type of barrier for the girls. Education is not divided for the people….it is meant for the whole community.
I have seen the different picture here in Mumbai also. Here the local people seem to be quite indifferent in the support of equal education for both the groups. I have met many girls who got married at their teen ages, because of which they had to stop their study. For their family members, their responsibility for their baby girls is only up to their marriages. Once they get married means they have to stop their study, because of the negative support from their in laws. Those who get the support from their in laws for their career are quite lucky to some extend…but this is a very rare case….more appropriately the rarest among them.
That’s why, my friends kept their mouth open for several times when they came to know about my qualification and about the support of my husband regarding my career. According to them, I am a late married person who might face problems in my married life also. Those are all junior to me for almost six to ten years, but quite senior to me in terms of their six seven years old kids.
I really feel proud of our culture, our support to the education….but parallelly quite ashamed of those who do not know their mother tongue properly. Ignorance of learning our mother tongue is not a defined problem, it is in fact one type of self created problem….which can be solved by ourselves only. If literacy counts the qualification then Assam will get some more percentage…I think so.
It is logical to expect something from a person who is honestly in deep sleep, but very stupidity to expect the least one from the same person who is pretending to be asleep……