Educating the masses has never been on the priority list of the rulers of this country. There is no exaggeration in the above comment. The report published by Human Rights Watch (HRW) on barriers to girls’ education paints a depressing picture of the state of education in the country.

While both genders are missing out on education, girls are worst affected. The new government of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), elected in July 2018, has always shown its disappointment over unacceptably large numbers of out of school children.

As the government will complete its first hundred days shortly, the ruling party has put the issue of education on the backburner; it seems so. More than 22 million uneducated children mean one illiterate generation. Even imagining what this generation will turn into is a shuddering thought.

The ruling parties, in general, and Prime Minister Imran Khan, in particular, have been vocal advocates of education for everyone. Now that PTI is in the ruling party in the centre and three provinces, it is about time for the party to give more attention to the areas that lag behind the rest of the country in education. The government needs to gap the vast chasm between the gender disparities in the education sector.

Human development in any country depends on the quality of education in that country. PTI also believes in this correlation. Why is it the case then that the party is yet to come up with a solution that can address the abysmal situation of education in the state?

Moreover, the lack of action on the part of the government means the state itself is violating one of the fundamental rights that the Constitution of Pakistan grants to the children of the nation: The right to education. The federation, as well as provincial governments, need to take drastic measures not only to increase enrolment but also ensuring that teaching standards are improved.