Seven interesting facts about India’s first education minister

November 11 is celebrated as the National Education Day to commemorate the birth anniversary of independent India’s first education minister, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad. But did you know:

  1. It was only in 2008 that the government decided to celebrate this day as the National Education Day.
  2. Maulana Abul Kalam Azad was born on November 11, 1888, in Mecca. His full name is Maulana Sayyid Abul Kalam Ghulam Muhiyuddin Ahmed bin Khairuddin Al-Hussaini Azad.
  3. He served as education minister of independent India for almost 11 years, from August 15, 1947 to February 22, 1958.
  4. During his tenure, he set up three akademies for fine arts/ creative arts: Lalit Kala Academy, Sahitya Academy, Sangeet Natak Academy
  5. He was instrumental in establishing the following: All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE); University Grants Commission (UGC) and Jamila Millia Islamia University.
  6. Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), Indian Institute of Science (IISc) and School of Architecture and Planning are also said to be his brainchild.
  7. He was posthumously awarded India’s highest civilian honour, the Bharat Ratna in 1992 for his invaluable contribution to the nation.

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