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Eleventh-grade student Akshath Mugad uses the Byju's learning app at home in Mumbai. The app has 2 million paid subscribers. (Photo by Kosaku Mimura)
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ROSEMARY MARANDI, Nikkei staff writer | India

MUMBAI -- India, widely considered the birthplace of the number zero, has a proud mathematics tradition. So it came as a shock to Byju Raveendran when he learned that many middle school students were unable to do basic arithmetic.

This was before 2011, and the struggle continues. In 2018, one study by a nongovernmental organization found that 56% of eighth-graders could not solve a three-digit by one-digit division equation.

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