Right to Education "A Fundamental Right"
Over 42% of our population today is below 18 and they are children & India has the largest child population in the world. 50% of Indian children aged 6-18 do not go to school. So dropout rates increase alarmingly in class III to V. Its 50% for boys & 58% for girls. The Indian constitution provides special status to the children up to the age of 14 years.
Government’s initiatives towards Universalization of Primary Education is recommendable. Every child must enjoy the Right to Education. Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan is being implemented in partnership with State Governments to cover the entire country and addresses the needs of 192 million children in 1.1 million habitations & making children’s education universal, up to the age of 14 years.
Though easy access to primary education has increased enrollment rates in schools significantly, poor quality of education has remain same in the schools mainly in rural belt due to lack of qualified teachers, lack of infrastructure, lack of basic educational tools etc. are matters of great concerns. More than 50% of children in the school going age 6-14 years are deprived from right to education & engaged in different works as in agriculture, mining or working as domestic servant.
India has the largest number of child labourers in the world today with 12.7 million economically active children of 5-14 years according to 2001 Census. Article 45 of the Directive Principles of State Policy provide free & compulsory education to all children up to the age of 14 .
The 86th Amendment says that, the Government shall provide free & compulsory education to all children below the age of 14. The Right to Education Bill 2008 defines that it’s the the duty of state to provide free & compulsory education to all children below the age of 14 years without any financial barrier & help in every sphere may be to provide fees, cost of books, transportation, uniforms.
This bill also said that every school must have a school management committee where more than half the members are the parents of the children.This bill also give emphasis to mother tongue of the child, abolition of physical punishment, ban on private tuition & make free the students from fear.