Educational Development In South India
Travancore an erstwhile princely State, which forms the chunk of modern Kerala State, has always retained the lead in educational matters since the very ancient times. Early educational centres like Kanthaloor Salai, Parthivapuram Salai etc. are well known. In the later period, learning of Sanskrit assumed much importance. But after the advent of Europeans and since the dawn of modern period the educational perspective once again underwent a substantial change. Knowledge in Sanskrit was found not enough to cater to the need of modern education and against this background, study of English was encouraged by the enlightened rulers of Travancore and the Christian Missionaries. This phenomenon opened the gate of education to private agencies, which brought both good and evil trends in the educational front. This farsight in educational matters dawned on the mind of Sir C.P. Ramaswany Aiyar who served as Diwan of Travancore during 1936-47. Under his stewardship the state adopted a new educational policy, which while retaining the legacy of education the state, attempted to weed out the non-secular tendencies that had vitiated the field. History of education of this period and the politics of the time will unveil, how education can be misused for selfish purposes. While the Diwan was keen on giving a secular touch to education and putting restraint to press which were encouraging non-secular tendencies, he was understood and misrepresented by the enemies of secularism. This work is an attempt to highlight the factors that obstructed reforms in the educational front to serve secularism in the state.
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