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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2793

Sri_la_ Arumuka Navalar Peruman in the archway of Navalar Saiva Prakasa Vidiyasalai in Chidamparam

By K.T.Rajasingham
Colombo, 02 April, (

Navalar Saiva Prakasa Vidiyasalai - school was established by Sri_la_ Arumuka Navalar Peruman in the year 1864.

This school has been presently taken over by the Tamil Nadu Government and it is now functioning as one of the a Government mixed schools, with 880 students and classes up to Grade 12 (Plus 2).

The school is being administered by a 11 member Executive Committee consisting of 6 teachers and 5 distinguished persons appointed by the Government of Tamil Nadu.

Asian Tribune contacted one of the Executive Committee Members of this School regarding the availability of a photograph of Sri_la_ Arumuka Navalar Peruman and I was informed that they are not in possession of the same and I received the picture found in the archway of the school.

Establishment of a school at Chidamparam

Navalar was no parochial minded educationist thinking in terms of his native place and locality. To him the educational needs of the children in south India were of the same concern as the education needs of the children of north Ceylon. He appealed to the generosity of the people in India and Ceylon. The site he had chosen for his proposed School was Chidambaram which was frequented by Hindu pilgrims from all parts of Ceylon. The munificent patrons of learning in Jaffna contributed to his appeal for funds they having been satisfied with his untiring zeal in spreading the torch of Learning. As there was poor response from South India to Navalar’s appeal he built a school with the limited funds raised from the people of Jaffna . Educational Activities of Arumuga Nvalar – Page – 58, By S.Thananjayarajasingham

The Jaffna Freeman on 22 December 1864) describes the opening of the school in following manner :
Sri Arumuga Navalar and Hinduism

We understand that well-known Pundit and Hindu Preacher Sri Arumuga Navalar who during his last stay in Jaffna exerted to raise funds for the purpose of organizing a Tamil institution at Chidamparam to train up young men for Hindu Ministry, has after all succeeded to set about his work.

The proposed institution was opened on Friday the 11th November 1864. There were not less than 1000 people gathered together to witness the scene of inauguration referred and to listen to the sermons preached on the objects of the institution and the general claims of Hinduism for public sympathy and support. We hope that such institution would thrive well and are long make a sufficient return to the labourers and funds devoted for that purpose. Much credit is due to Sri Arumuga Navalar for introducing such a novelty among the Hindus. Throws light on the fact that Navalar thought that founding a Vedagama Seminary and a School at Chidamparam after his fourth visit to India in 1858.

As funds were limited he was only able to build another Saivaprakasa Vidyasalai at Chidamparam. If only funds were available Navalar would have laid the foundation for a Hindu University at Chidamparam – The Jaffna Freeman, 22nd December 1864.

- Asian Tribune -

Sri_la_ Arumuka Navalar Peruman in the archway of Navalar Saiva Prakasa Vidiyasalai in Chidamparam
diconary view
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