The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Bill 2013 was passed into law earlier this month in Sindh, Pakistan. This will provide children between the ages of five and sixteen with free and compulsory education.
The Sindh Education Minister, Pir Mazharul Haq, introduced the bill to the Assembly, making Sindh the first province in Pakistan to pass such a law. He argues that, for the past several years, Sindh has been trying to implement similar laws. However, financially, it was difficult to carry out and girls’ education was often overlooked. Now, the newly passed bill will allow the government to monitor the process of free education and ensure every child is in school. Haq claims that the bill coincides with Article 25-A of the Constitution, which declares that free and compulsory education is a fundamental right for children.
Once the new law is set into place, Haq hopes it will positively affect Pakistan’s goal of 100 percent literacy rate under the UN Millennium Development Goals.
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