The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education in India

“All persons should be educated, so we could have peace in the world”.

This is a very famous quote of John Amos Comenius, who is considered as a father of education. It is a fact that, peace can’t be established unless certain rights are not guaranteed to all of its citizen and definitely education is one of the most powerful tools, as this is the foundation of good citizenship and most vital ingredient for the development of human resources.

 Undoubtedly, a child of today is a leader of tomorrow and the real wealth of a nation is not so much in it’s of natural resources like metals, minerals and oils etc; but it lies more absolutely in the kind and quality of its children. It is they who are the shapers of a nation’s tomorrow. But, it is our responsibility today, to shape the future of our children, who are most precious, valuable, and fragile resource for the future.  We believe that, as a future leader every child has the right to be encouraged and nurtured emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually. Their physical needs must be adequately met, including nutrition, housing, and medical care.   There are several basic rights that a child deserves to get, but here we are going to discuss the right of education only.  As we know that proper education is the basic ingredient to produce a good citizen and it is also a fact that, receiving a good education is every child’s basic right. It is education that provides competence and empowers children to be self-sufficient. Needless to say that education plays vital role in the human capital formation.

Who is responsible for providing the education: In India, the Central and state governments are responsible for providing the school education to all school-age children. By the Constitutional Amendment of 1976 education was included in the Concurrent List, which means that both the Centre and the State have jurisdiction over making legislative provisions on the subject and in 2002 the Constitution was Amended to include the Article 21A in the Indian constitution, which declares  Education a fundamental Right. Now education is a fundamental right and its enforcement would provide us a unique opportunity to build up a mission encompassing all the discourses to fulfill our goal of universal elementary education. The right to education goes further than free and compulsory education to incorporate quality education for all.

This 86th amendment of the constitution of India, however, necessitated for a legislation to explain the mode of implementation of the fundamental right of education. Hence, the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act 2009 came into existence, which was implemented on 1st April, 2010 and it is popularly known as right to education or RTE and it is legally enforceable duty of the government to provide free and compulsory education in a neighborhood school.

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