‘2,700 Mizoram children did not enrol in schools’

Aizawl, Oct 15 (IANS) Around 2,700 children in Mizoram did not enrol themselves in state-run schools, education minister H. Rohluna told the state assembly on Thursday.

A state education department official told IANS on condition of anonymity that the parents of these 2,665 students belonged to certain religious sects which refuse to enrol their children in schools as they traditionally do not believe in formal education.

“Frequent efforts and appeals to them (parents) did not yield any results because of their strong religious belief,” the official said.

Rohluna said: “Despite repeated efforts to convince the parents, they refused to admit their kids to schools to undertake formal education.”

He said the school education department, under the aegis of the centrally-sponsored Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan, was trying to establish residential and non-residential special teaching centres to ensure imparting of non-formal education to such children in Lawngtlai, Lunglei, Aizawl and other districts.

In a separate incident in eastern Mizoram, eighteen people from four families fled to China earlier this year to escape their enrolment for the Aadhaar or unique identification card.

An official from Champhai district in Mizoram said they were afraid of the Aadhaar number as they interpreted it as having something to do with the emergence of anti-Christ, prophesied in Christian theology.

The official said these people were brought back home recently with the help of the state government,

With a population of around 1.1 million, Mizoram is a Christian-dominated state.

According to the 2011 census, the literacy level in Mizoram was 91.58 percent.

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