A recent report on education released by the National Statistical Office (NSO) reveals Kerala continues to be the most literate state in India with 96.20 per cent, followed by northern state, Delhi with 89 per cent. Meanwhile, the national average is at 77.7 per cent, and the southern state Andhra Pradesh has been ranked the lowest with a literacy rate at 66.40 per cent and Bihar coming a close second with 72.8 per cent. On the other hand, Karnataka’s literacy rate is lower than the national average with 77.2 per cent.
Debunking all the pre-conceived notions about South Indian states being the most literate, after Kerala and Delhi, Uttarakhand is at third position with a literacy rate at 87.60 per cent and Assam bags the fourth position with 85.90 per cent literacy rate.
According to media reports, the literacy gap between male and female on a national level is 14.40 percentage points. In India, male literacy stands at 84.70 per cent, and female literacy stands at 70.3 per cent. However, Kerala amongst all the states has the smallest gender gap between male and female literacy – at 2.2 percentage points. Apart from the thinnest gender gap, Kerala also has the lowest literacy gap between urban and rural areas which stands at 1.9 percentage points. Meanwhile, in Telangana State, the urban clusters literacy rate is 23.40 per cent higher than rural clusters, and Andhra Pradesh’s literacy difference between urban and rural areas is at 19.2 per cent.