Census 2011: How Indian states fare on the Literacy front
Low national averages have been a perennial problem in india. However, it you do a state level analysis, you wll find that there is a very large skew in literacy levels across states.
Illiteracy hall of super shame: one state with 49% or more of the population illiterate
One state - Bihar - has a whopping 49.6% illiteracy! Some serious work neds to be done here, and fast, if national literacy levels have to show significant improvement
Illiteracy hall of shame: seven states with 49% or more female illiteracy
As many as seven states have 49% or more of their female population illiterate. Leading this infomous group is Bihar with 58.1% female illiteracy. Following Bihar are Rajasthan, Jharkand, Jammu & Kashmir, Uttar Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh. It is worth noting that all these states fall in the northen half of the country.
11 states with 39% or more illiterate population
If we reduce the filter from 49% to 39%, eleven states and Union Territories have an illiteracy level of 39% or more. These are Bihar, Arunachal Pradesh, Jharkand, Rajasthan, Jammu & Kashmir, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Telengana, Meghalaya, Chattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh.
The good part of the literacy story
That brings us to the good part of the story - the states with a good performance in the literacy front. Let's see
Literacy hall of fame: 3 states with 79% or more literacy
Three states/ Union territories in the union have 79% or more literacy levels. These are Kerala, Goa and Lakshadweep. Two things in common about them - They are all on the west coast and they are all small administrative units. Out of these, only Kerala with 84.2% literacy meets the global literacy rate of 84.1%
Literacy hall of super fame: The one state with 79% or more female literacy
Just one state, Kerala has a female literacy rate of 79% or more, having achieved a female literacy rate of 83%. Incidentally, this is way over the global avrage for female literacy, which stands at 79.7%
9 states where 69% or more of the female population is literate
There are a total of nine States / Union Territories which have crossed the 69% figure, when it comes to female literacy. These are - Kerala, Lakshadweep, Goa, Mizoram, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Tripura, Puducherry, Chandigarh and NCT of Delhi. Again , the smaller states plus union territories lead in this metric also
24 states have crossed 69% male literacy rates
24 out of the 36 States and Union Territories have crossed teh 69% figure when it comes to male literacy. The entire west coast plus part of the east and the goose neck on the north fall in this group. If we exclude Maharashtra, then it looks like it is the smaller states all the way on this count too