WRITTEN BY R. NANJAPPA                        

Post No. 8540

Date uploaded in London – – – 20 August 2020   

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                               BOOKS INDIANS SHOULD READ- 21

                                            Chapter 8 Part 2


Figures Speak

We may now see some statistics.
1. No of Schools in the various areas. Madras Presidency,1823

Area                                       Schools         Students
Ganjam (Oriya)                       255                 2977

Telugu speaking
Vizagapatnam                          914                 9715
Rajhamundry                           291                 2658
Masulipatam                           484                  5083
Guntoor                                   574                  7724
Nellore                                     697                  7621
Cuddapah                                494                   6000

Kannada speaking
Bellary                                     510                   6641
Seringapatam                             41                    627
Malayalam Speaking
Malabar                                   759                 14,153

Tamil Speaking
North Arcot                              630                     7326
South Arcot                               875                 10,523
Chingleput                                508                   6845
Tanjore                                      884                 17.582
Trichinopoly                              790                  10.331
Madura                                      884                  13,781
Tinnevelly                                   607                   9377
Coimbatore                                763                    8206
Salem                                          333                   4326
Madras                                        322                   5699  

Caste representation among male students (%)
In Tamil Speaking areas.

District                Brahmins  Vysee     Sudra        Others
North Arcot             9.60        8.66       66.76           7.40
South Arcot             9.57        3.55       76.19            8.72
Chingleput             12.75       6.30        71.47           6.72
Tanjore                   16.16       1.27        61.17           13.32
Trichinopoly           11.76       2.25        76.00            3.23
Madura                     8.67       8.18        52.99          21.77
Tinnevelly               21.78                       31.21          38.42
Coimbatore             11.30       3.56         78.52            2.78
Salem                      10.75       7.59         39.15          32.38
Ordinary Schools     7.01       15.44       68.62            6.13
Charity Schools       12.56      11.11        41.55          32.37

IT is evident from the above that Brahmins did not dominate or monopolise

The education scene. The main beneficiaries were the Sudras.

 The reports and the statements attached to them drawn up by the collectors under 

instruction from the Governor are comprehensive, and also reveal qualitative aspects.

They cover the qualification of the teachers, how and how much they were paid, how the

poor students managed, the subjects covered , the number and types of books taught, etc. 
It has to be remembered that at that time people mostly followed their traditional

occupations, which they freely  learnt at home  (much as the apprentices did in England).

They did not have to pay for learning the trade or craft which was the means of livelihood.

Thus the nature of even indigenous schooling was academic, and did not affect their

professions. Only the Brahmins went on to study their religious literature because

they earned their bread thereby.

Why did this system disappear?

The British altered the general economic and financial arrangements drastically. The

village communities lost their financial independence due to centralisation. They lost

their cohesiveness and organic nature. They were unable to maintain the schools.

The economy and along with it the old professions declined, and could no more provide

sustenance. The Indian schools were left to die.

At the same time, the schools introduced by the British were unaffordable for most.

Gandhiji pointed this out in his 1931 address.

” The village schools were not good enough for the British administrator, so he came out

with his programme. Every school must have so much paraphernalia, building, and so forth.

Well, there were no such schools at all. There are statistics left by a British administrator,

which show that, in places where they have carried out a survey, ancient schools have

gone by the board, because there was no recognition….and the schools established after

the European pattern were too expensive for the people.

Too expensive for the people!  That is why large sections of people (including Brahmins)

could not afford formal education in the schools run by the government. To this day, the

schools we have established after the European pattern remain expensive!

There are many qualitative aspects of the indigenous schools and interesting information

that the reports bring out. We may see them separately. In the meantime every educated

Indian ought to study these reports to know the truth first hand, and become free from the

falsehoods that have been dished out to us in our system, by the politicians, and through

the media. 

Many Brahmins themselves have developed a  defensive complex- a guilty conscience-

as if their forefathers had done something wrong by denying education to the other

communities. Dharampal’s book contains all the original reports which are full of actual

statistics. And they show that Brahmins did not control or dominate or monopolise

education, and that Sudras derived the maximum benefit  under the indigenous

system. Brahmins mainly concentrated on religious education. General education was open

to all, and was supported by common village funds and charity, as we will see. 

Indians in general were neither uneducated nor illiterate as the politicians and false

historians have been claiming. Indians should study this material in the original and

really understand things as they were. Only then can we call the bluff of the propagandist

elements.                                                               ***                      Chapter 8 concluded

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