The government will institute a literacy award in the name of Chelakkodan Aysha, who had declared Kerala totally literate on April 18, 1991. Aysha, aged 91, died at her Kavanoor house in the district two weeks ago.

Inaugurating the 22nd anniversary celebrations of the declaration of the State’s total literacy here on Thursday, Education Minister P.K. Abdu Rabb said the Chelakkodan Aysha award would be given to the topper among the literacy learners. The award would consist of a cash prize of Rs.10,001 and memento.

The celebrations organised jointly by the State Literacy Mission and the Department of Education also marked the commemoration of Aysha.

Mr. Rabb said all facilities would be provided for the uneducated to achieve formal education irrespective of their age. Arrangements would be made for them to take equivalency examinations even in the Gulf, he said.

He said more than 90 per cent of the students registering in open school in the State were from Malabar. All districts in the State would have open school centres soon, he said.

One of the zonal centres of the open school would be in Malappuram.

Mr. Rabb gave away the Aksharalaksham trophy and certificate won by Malappuram district for the highest number of registration for equivalency education in the State.

He also gave away prizes for the winners of an essay competition for the literacy tutors.