For the purpose of census 2011, a person aged seven and above, who can both read and write with understanding in any language, is treated as literate. A person, who can only read but cannot write, is not literate. In the censuses prior to 1991, children below five years of age were necessarily treated as illiterates.
The results of 2011 census reveal that there has been an increase in literacy in the country. The literacy rate in the country is 74.04 per cent, 82.14 for males and 65.46 for females. Kerala retained its position by being on top with a 93.91 per cent literacy rate, closely followed by Lakshadweep (92.28 per cent) and Mizoram (91.58 per cent).
Bihar with a literacy rate of 63.82 per cent ranks last in the country preceded by Arunachal Pradesh (66.95 per cent) and Rajasthan (67.06 per cent).