Thursday, 11 October 2012

Disgraceful situation of literacy in Nepal

"Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.
No country can really develop unless its citizens are educated."
- Nelson Mandela

Nepal was kept in dark till 1950 by Rana regime, a highly centralized autocracy, pursued a policy of isolating Nepal from external influences that the policy helped Nepal maintain its national independence during the colonial era, but also impeded the country's socio-economic development [1]. If Nepal would had been ruled by British like in India then Nepal would be one of the most developed nation in the world. Nepal is just 62 years old nation that has opened the door to the outside world and got an opportunity to study BUT again this was mainly to elites and higher-caste people (not all but only to rich, priests and urban) in the beginning.

According to the Nepal Living Standards Survey (NLSS) 2010/2011 published by Central Bureau of Statistics October 2011 only 56.5% of the adult population aged 15 years and over is literate in Nepal. There is a wide gap between male and female. The literacy rate of males is 71.6% and female is 44.5%.

Developmental Region wise education status in Nepal
Eastern: 56.9% (Female: 44.3%; Male: 72.9%)
Central: 54.9% (Female: 42.7%; Male: 69.5%)
Western: 61.4% (Female: 51.3%; Male: 75.2%)
Mid-West: 54.1% (Female: 42.8%; Male: 69.2%)
Far West: 54.1% (Female: 40.0%; Male: 73.8%)

Residence wise education status
Urban: 75.6% (Female: 65.8%; Male: 87.0%)
Rural: 51.3% (Female: 39.1%; Male: 67.2%)

Since literacy is very poor in Nepal then how we can expect the change and development in Nepal. Very interesting to know that though Far western region male literacy is very high but all the bad practices such as human slavery (Kamalari, Kamaiya, Badi, etc) and gender-based discriminatory practices like Chaupaddhi are still prevailing in that region as well.

According to the human developmental indicators Far, Mid-west and western regions are under developed and has high socio-economic problems. BUT wonder WHY the western region can't become like the Eastern in terms of development though there literacy rate is less than the west. It might be because of the mindset of people driven by Dogmatic thinking guided by the Law of Manu (Manusmriti) I suppose.


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