Kathmandu, Minister for Education, Science and Technology Ashok Kumar Rai has called for celebrating the National Education Day on September 19 with enthusiasm. Addressing a meeting of the National Education Day Programme Main Committee here today, the Education Minister urged marking the Day at the provincial and local level as well as at the school and social organisational level.

Minister of State for Education, Science and Technology, Pramila Kumari, stressed on the need of giving special attention to improving the status of education in the Madhes province given its poor status in the province. Committee member-secretary and Ministry spokesperson Deepak Sharma said that 778 applications have been received for the Nepal Bidyabhusan ‘Ka’ medal, 171 for the Nepal Bidyabhusan ‘Kha’ medal and 50 for Nepal Bidyabhusan ‘Ga’ medal to be awarded to various persons on the occasion. Two prizes – the Nepal Prabidhi Bhusan and Nepal Samaj Kalyan Puraskar – have been added to be awarded on the National Education Day this year.

In addition, 177 individuals will be awarded the National Education Prize. The meeting formed the Programme Coordination Committee under the convenorship of Ministry’s Secretary Suresh Adhikari, the Award Nomination Committee under the convenorship of Joint-Secretary Dr Hari Prasad Lamsal, the Programme Management Sub-committee under the convenorship of Joint-Secretary Bhagawan Aryal and the Souvenir Publication Sub-committee under the convenorship of Chudamani Poudel, the Director General of the Centre for Education and Human Resource Development. Similarly, Director General of the Curriculum Development Centre Baikuntha Aryal is the convenor of the Cultural Programme Sub-committee, spokesperson Sharma is the convenor of the Publicity Sub-committee and Joint Secretary Dr Kamal Pokharel is the convenor of the National Education Day Motto Selection Taskforce.

The Main Committee chaired by the Minister for Education comprises the National Planning Commission Vice-chair, the Chancellor of Nepal Academy, the Vice-Chancellors of various universities, the mayors of the Kathmandu and Lalitpur metropolitan cities, chiefs of the educational bodies, the chiefs of the State media and the representatives of Nepal Teachers Federation, private school proprietors’ associations, among the organisations working in the education sector. The National Education Day commemorates the day on which the bill related to education was certified by the President. This legislation is drafted in the spirit of the fundamental rights enshrined in the Constitution which stipulates that it is the duty of the State to provide free and compulsory education up to the basic level. The bill was certified by then President Bidya Devi Bhandari on September 18, 2018.