Monday, December 28, 2015

Indigeneous Education In The 18Th Century - Gandhian Dharampal

Indigeneous Education In The 18Th Century
By Sanjeev Nayyar, March 2004 [esamskriti@suryaconsulting.net]
Courtesy, copyright & author Dharampal
First it was the British who told Indians how they civilized them by bringing education to India. Today Christian missionaries and some Indian Christians (converts) keep on reminding Hindus of the pioneering role played by the Christian community in the field of education. I wondered! If this were true how did knowledge contained in the Vedas, Shastras and on Ayurveda, Astronomy, steel making etc be carried forward through generations. If it is the Christians whom we have to credit with educating us, how did numerous schools of Indian thought come into being and importantly survive for thousands of years. 
Having read Arun Shourie’s book ‘Missionaries in India’ I knew the missionary motive behind educating India but! Did not have knowledge of the system of education that existed in India before the Christians began to rule India. Therefore, I felt inadequate when Christians claimed to have educated India till I read ‘The Beautiful Tree: Indigenous Indian Education in the 18th century” by Dharampalji. The book reproduces Reports of numerous Surveys undertaken in Bengal, Punjab and Madras Presidency by the British (between 1800-1830) to give you the state of education in India around 1800, number of schools/colleges, caste composition of students, how many Hindu & Muslim students, subjects taught and books used.
The book is volume 3 in a series of five books titled “Dharampal. Collected Writings”. Volume 1 is “Indian Science & Technology in the 18th century”. These five books are only available at the Other India Bookstore, Above Mapusa Clinic, Mapusa 403507, Goa, India. Nos 91-832263306, 256479. 
While the bullet point summary explains in detail what the British did a brief outline is. First they criticized the local educational system for its inadequacies, then killed it by withdrawing financial support and lastly used the missionaries to thrust upon us their own system saying it was the best. It is indeed unfortunate that the educational system of today continues to by and large follow the British model. I have realized that the best way to defeat a country is to make her loose confidence in itself by criticizing everything that it stands for. Thereafter, sit back & monitor its performance against the benchmarks that you have set for the conquered. Unless we unshackle ourselves, decolonise our minds we will continue to be ruled by the British inspite of being a free country.
In October 1931 Gandhiji was invited to address the Royal Institute of International Affairs, London where he made two observations. One ‘that today India is more illiterate than it was fifty or hundred years ago’. Two that ‘the British administrators instead of looking after education and other matters which had existed began to root them out. They scratched the soil and began to look at the root, and left the root like that and the beautiful tree perished’. Sir Philip Hartog, a founder of the School of Oriental Studies, London and former vice-chancellor of the University of Dacca questioned Gandhiji and a long correspondence between them took place. In a way this book seeks to substantiate Gandhiji’s remarks with reports of surveys undertaken by the British in the early 19th century.
Whenever someone refers to education I remember the following words of Mark Twain. He said, “I do not allow my schooling to interfere with my education”. Learning is a continuous process and not limited to formal education. I have reproduced excerpts from the book, letters & tables written by the British. This article is dedicated to Mohandas K Gandhi who triggered off a debate on the negative impact of British rule on India’s indigenous educational system. I have used spellings as in the book e.g. the word Hindus was spelt as Hindoos then. Thus, you might find many spelling errors, please ignore but note difference in spellings.
No'sChapter TitleContents
1.Bullet PointKey points.
2.Introduction includes Report on Madras Presidency.Gives state of education in Britain 1700-1800, why did the British study about Indian knowledge-sciences, results of British survey on state of education app1825, compares state of education in India vs. Britain, nos of schools in Madras Presidency with caste break-up, age of enrolment, daily timings, education of girls.
3.Adam’s Report on education in Bengal, Bihar.Through 3 surveys gives you number of schools, languages used, four stages of school instruction, Sanskrit learning and provision of elementary education for all section. Extracts from Adam’s report on the state of medical practice.
4.Leitner on education in Punjab.Gives you the number of pupils in Panjab in 1850-1880, extracts from Leitner’s report that contain classification of indigenous schools, list of Sanskrit books used.
5.British Strategy, Impact.One is comparison of education in Britain & Madras Presidency, two is how were indigenous schools organized, three is British strategy to kill indigenous educational system and four impact of point three.
6.Collectors Reports, TablesReproduced actual letters & tables written by British collectors, shows Sudras having the highest number of scholars.
7.Madras Presidency TableReproduced table-giving number of schools with caste composition of scholars.
8.Young India articles2 articles by Daulat Ram Gupta titled, The Decline of Mass Education in India How Indigenous education was crushed in Punjab.


Bullet Point     
Bullet points summary where I have tried to capture key points made by the author.
• In October 1931 Gandhiji was invited to address the Royal Institute of International Affairs, London where he made two observations. One ‘that today India is more illiterate than it was fifty or hundred years ago’. Two that ‘the British administrators instead of looking after education and other matters which had existed began to root them out. They scratched the soil and began to look at the root, and left the root like that and the beautiful tree perished’.
• Sir Philip Hartog, a founder of the School of Oriental Studies, London and former vice-chancellor of the University of Dacca questioned Gandhiji and a long correspondence between them took place. In a way this book seeks to substantiate Gandhiji’s remarks with reports of surveys undertaken by the British in the early 19th century.
• Today Christian missionaries and some Indian Christians (converts) keep on reminding Hindus of the pioneering role played by the Christian community in the field of education. I wondered! If it is the Christians whom we have to credit with educating us, how did numerous schools of Indian thought come into being and importantly survive for thousands of years.
• In England at the end of the 17th century there are Charity Schools whose main purpose was that every child was to learn to read the Bible. Around 1802, the monitorial method of teaching used by Joseph Lancaster (and also by Andrew Bell, supposedly borrowed from India, Ibid pg 246, Note on Indian Education by Alexander Walker quote ‘The children were instructed without violence and by a process peculiarly simple. The system was borrowed from the Bramans and brought from India to Europe.
• Three approaches (seemingly different but in reality complementary to one another) began to operate in the British held areas of India regarding Indian knowledge, scholarship and centers of learning from about the 1770s. One they needed to provide a background of previous precedents to the new concepts being introduced by them. It was this requirement which gave birth to British Indology. Two the conquest of the American civilization led to the disappearance of all written records that existed. They did not want a repeat. Three they wanted to spread Christianity. ‘
• For England had few schools for the children of ordinary people till about 1800. In his first report, Adam observed that there exist about 1,00,000 village schools in Bengal and Bihar around the 1830s, not to talk of the rest of India. The content of studies was better than what was then studied in England. The duration of study was more prolonged. The method of school teaching was superior and it is this very method which is said to have greatly helped the introduction of popular education in England but which had prevailed in India for centuries. The only aspect, and certainly a very important one, where Indian institutional education seems to have lagged behind was with regard to the education of girls.
• It was unthinkable for the British that India could have had a proportionately larger number receiving education than those in England itself.
• The British asked its Collectors to collect district wise data on number of schools and type of education that I have reproduced excerpts below.
• The actual situation, which is revealed, was different, if not quite contrary, for at least amongst the Hindoos, in the districts of the Madras Presidency (and dramatically so in the Tamil-speaking areas) as well as the two districts of Bihar. It was the groups termed Soodras, and the castes considered below them who predominated in the thousands of the then still-existing schools in practically each of the areas.’
Madras Presidency 1822-25 (Collectors Reports)
Details of Schools & Colleges
Caste Division of Male school students
Speaking LanguageBrahmins, ChettrisVyseeSoodraOther CasteMuslimsTotal Male Students
Total30,21113,45975,94322,92510,6441,53,182
% of total20950156100


• Adam’s 1st Report on Bengal. Survey of Post 1800 material. His conclusions, one every village had atleast    one school and in all probability in Bengal and Bihar with 1,50,748 villages, there will still be 1,00,000 villages that have these schools. Two on the basis of personal observation & evidence collected he inferred there were app 100 institutions of higher learning in each district meaning app 1,800 such institutions and 10,800 scholars in them.
• Adam said that he found a number of genuine, qualified medical practioners in Bengal who analyzed the symptoms of the disease before suggesting a cure.
• In Punjab there were 3,30,000 pupils in 1850 as compared to 1,90,000 in 1882 as per Leitner’s Report.
• Schools were classified in Sikh, Muslim, Hindu using current descriptions.
• Sanskrit books were used to teach grammar, lexicology, mathematics, medical science, logic, law and vedant.
England-Madras comparison
EnglandMadras Presidency
Population95,43,610 (1811)1,28,50,941 (1823)
Nos attending schoolsApp 75,000 (note below)1,57,195 (ref chapter 2)


• About one third of the total revenue (from agriculture & sea ports) were according to ancient practice assigned for the requirements of the social & cultural infrastructure till the British overturned it all. The British increased the quantum of land revenue, made it payable twice a year at fixed timed (irrespective of weather conditions), had to be paid in cash not produce meaning the farmer had to sell his produce in the market to pay revenue exposing himself to the vagaries of market pricing. These moves towards centralization of revenue ensured that there was hardly any revenue to pay for social & cultural infrastructure resulting in its death.
• It was imperative to somehow uproot the Indian indigenous system for the relatively undisturbed maintenance and continuance of British rule. It is the same imperative which decided Macaulay, Bertinck, etc., to deliberately neglect large-scale school education-proposed by men like Adam - till a viable system of Anglicized higher education had first been established in the country.
• Consequences of Killing Indigenous Education System. One, it led to an obliteration of literacy and knowledge of such dimensions amongst the Indian people. Two, it destroyed the Indian social balance in which, traditionally, persons from all sections of society appear to have been able to receive fairly competent schooling. Three it is this destruction along with similar damage in the economic sphere, which led to great deterioration in the status and socio-economic conditions and personal dignity of those who are now known as the scheduled castes; and to only a slightly lesser extent to that of the vast peasant majority encompassed by the term ‘backward castes’. The recent movements embracing these sections to a great extent seem to be aimed at restoring this basic Indian social balance. Four & most importantly, till today it has kept most educated Indians ignorant of the society they live in, the culture which sustains this society, and their fellow beings; and more tragically, yet, for over a century it has induced a lack of confidence, and loss and bearing amongst the people of Indian in general.
• Number of Native Schools/Colleges in Madras Presidency &Number of Scholars. This table is an attachment to a report by J Dent, Secretary, Fort St George, 21/2/1825. Number of Schools 574 Colleges 0, Population 4,54,754, includes male & female. Students are male + female i.e. male 184100 balance is female.
Name of CollectorateNo of SchoolsMadras PresidencyVyseaSoodraOther CasteMuslimsTotal Scholars
Total125004250219669854002754813561188680
% of total231045157100


• Sudras made up 45% of the scholars as compared to Brahmins 23%, today is probably the reverse.
• High number of Muslim scholars in Malabar 4318.
• Only 7 % of the total number of scholars were Muslims. Meaning then & today it the Muslims continue to pay less attention to education. Be it England or India does not matter.
• 12500 schools & colleges. The British first killed these institutions, then brought in Anglicized education into India through the missionaries.
I – Indian historical knowledge, by & large, has been derived, atleast until recent decades, from the writings & accounts left by foreigners. This applies equally to our knowledge about the status of Indian education over the past five centuries. The universities of Nalanda & Taxila, and a few others until recently have been better known & written about primarily because they have been described about centuries ago by some Greek or Chinese traveler, who happened to keep a journal which had survived.
Travelers & adventurers of a new kind began to wander around parts of India from about 1500 and more so from the close of the 16th century. Prior to 1770 (by which time they had become rulers of large areas), the British, on whose writings & records this book is based, had a rather different set of interests. Interests were largely mercantile, technological etc. Indian religions, scholarship & extent of education had scarcely interested them until then.
Education in Britain 17-18th century - It is not that the British had no tradition of education or scholarship during the 16th, 17th or early 18th centuries. It had the universities of Cambridge, Oxford and Edinburgh, which had their beginnings in the 13th-14th centuries. By the later part of the 18th century, Britain also had around 500 grammar schools. However, this considerable learning & scholarship was limited to a very select elite. This became esp. marked after the mid-16th century, when the Protestant revolution led to the closing of most of the monasteries, while the state sequestered their incomes & properties.
From the mid-16th century, a law was enacted ‘that the English Bible should not be read in churches. The right of private reading was granted to nobles, gentry & merchants that were householders (denied to others e.g. laborers). From about the end of the 17th century trends reversed slowly, leading to the setting of some Charity Schools for the common people. These schools were conceived with the intent of raising the laboring class to the level of religious instruction. After a short while these became dormant and were succeeded by the Sunday school movement. ‘Popular Education’ even at this period was still approached as a missionary enterprise, meaning the maxim was ‘that every child should learn to read the Bible’. After some time attention was focused on daily schools. Things moved hereon, nevertheless, as late as 1834, “the curriculum in the better class of national schools was limited in the main to religious instruction, reading & arithmetic, in some country schools writing was excluded for fear of evil consequences”
‘End of the 17th century there are Charity Schools whose main purpose was that every child was to learn to read the Bible.
Around 1802, the monitorial method of teaching used by Joseph Lancaster (and also by Andrew Bell, supposedly borrowed from India, Ibid pg 246, Note on Indian Education by Alexander Walker quote ‘The children were instructed without violence and by a process peculiarly simple. The system was borrowed from the Bramans and brought from India to Europe. It has been made the foundation of National schools in every enlightened country. The pupils were the monitors of each other and the characters are traced with a rod, or the finger on the sand. For more refer to pg 263 of the book) came into practice and helped the cause of popular education.
In 1792 number of those attending schools was app 40,000, in 1818 the nos was 674,883 and in 1851 there were 21,44,377 students. Number of schools in 1801 were app 3,363 and in 1851 were 46,114. School education, esp. elementary education at the people’s level, remained an uncommon commodity till around 1800. Nonetheless universities like Oxford were perhaps as important for Britain as Taxila & Nalanda were in India.
II - Three approaches (seemingly different but in reality complementary to one another) began to operate in the British held areas of India regarding Indian knowledge, scholarship and centers of learning from about the 1770s. The first resulted from growing British power and administrative requirements which (in addition to such undertakings that men like Adam Ferguson had recommended) also needed to provide a garb of legitimacy and a background of previous indigenous precedents (however far-fetched) to the new concepts, laws and procedures which were being created by the British state. It is primarily this requirement which gave birth to British Indology.
 The second approach was a product of the mind of the Edinburgh enlightenment (dating back to around 1750) which men like Maconochie represented. They had a fear, born out of historical experience, philosophical observation and reflection (the uprooting of entire civilizations in the Americas), that the conquest and defeat of a civilization generally led not only to its disintegration, but the disappearance of precious knowledge associated with it. They advocated, therefore, the preparation of a written record of what existed, and what could be got from the learned in places like Varanasi.
The third approach was a projection of what was then being attempted in Great Britain itself: to bring people to an institutionalized, formal, law-abiding Christianity and, for that some literacy and teaching became essential. To achieve such a purpose in India, and to assist evangelical exhortation and propaganda for extending Christian ‘light’ and ‘knowledge’ to the people, preparation of the grammars of various Indian languages became urgent. The task according to William Wilberforce, called for ‘the circulation of the holy scriptures in the native languages’ with a view to the general diffusion of Christianity, so that the Indians would, in short become Christians, if I may so express myself, without knowing it’. 
All these efforts, joined together, also led to the founding of a few British sponsored Sanskrit and Persian colleges as well as to the publication of some Indian texts or selections from them which suited the purpose of governance. From now, on, Christian missionaries also began to open schools. Occasionally, they wrote about the state and extent of indigenous education in the parts of India in which they functioned. However, British interest was not centered on the people, their knowledge, or education, or the lack of it. Rather, their interest in ancient texts served their purpose: that of making the people conform to what was chosen for them from such texts and their new interpretations. Their other interest (till 1813, this was only amongst a section of the British) was in the christianisation of those who were considered ready for such conversions (or, in the British phraseology of the period, for receiving ‘the blessings of Christian light and moral improvements’). These conversions were also expected to serve a more political purpose, in as much as it was felt that it could establish some affinity of outlook and belief between the rules and the ruled.
A primary consideration in all British decisions from the very beginning, continued to be the aim of maximizing the revenue receipts of Government and of discovering any possible new source which had remained exempt from paying any revenue to Government.
III - Instructions regarding the collection of information about the extent and nature of indigenous Indian education (including its contemporary state) were largely the consequence of the long debate in the House of Commons in 1813. This debate focused on the clause relating to the promotion of ‘religious and moral improvement’ in India. Before any new policy could be devised, the existing position needed to be better known. But the quality and coverage of these surveys varied from Presidency to Presidency, and even from district to district. (This generally happens in the gathering of any such information, and more so when such collection of data was a fairly new thing.)
The information which is thus available today, whether published, or still in manuscript form in the government records-as is true of the details of the Madras Presidency indigenous education survey-largely belongs to the 1820’s and 1830’s period. An unofficial survey made by G.W. Leitner in 1882 for the Punjab compared the situation there for the years before 1850, with that in 1882.
Before highlighting the main points of information given by the surveys and then proceeding with its analysis, some preliminary observations about the data as a whole are in order.
The first observation concerns the largely quantitative nature of the data presented and the fact that it concentrates largely on the institution of the school, as we know it today. This, however, may help propagate wrong impressions.
It is important to emphasize that indigenous education was carried out through pathshalas, madrassahs and gurukulas. Education in these traditional institutions-which were actually kept alive by revenue contributions by the community including illiterate peasants-was called shiksha (and included the ideas of prajna, shill and samadhi. These institutions were, in fact, the watering holes of the culture of traditional communities. Therefore, the term ‘school’ is a weak translation of the roles these institutions really played in Indian society.
For this reason, the quantitative nature of the data presented should be read with great caution. The increase in the numbers of schools in England may not necessarily have been a good thing, as it merely signified the arrival of factory schooling. On the other hand, the decline in the numbers of traditional educational institutions is to be intensely deplored, since this meant quality education was being replaced by a substandard substitute. These aspects must always be kept at the back of our minds when we commence analyzing the data for significance. Before we do that, the highlights first.
The most well-known and controversial point which emerged from the educational surveys lies in an observation made by William Adam. In his first report, he observed that there exist about 1,00,000 village schools in Bengal and Bihar around the 1830s. This statement appears to have been founded on the impressions of various high British officials and others who had known the different areas rather intimately and over long periods; it had no known backing of official records. Similar statements had been made much before W. Adam, for areas of the Madras Presidency. Men like Thomas Munro, had observed that ‘every village had a school’. For areas of the newly extended Presidency of Bombay around 1820, senior officials like G.L. Prendergast noted that there is hardly a village, great or small, throughout our territories, in which there is not at least one school, and in larger villages more. Observations made by Dr. G.W. Leitner in 1882 show that the spread of education in the Punjab around 1850 was of a similar extent.
Since these observations were made, they have been treated very differently: by some, with the sanctity reserved for divine utterances: and by others, as blasphemous, Naturally, the first view was linked with the growth of a vocal Indian nationalism. Its exponents, besides prominent Indians of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, have also included many illustrious Englishmen, like Keir Hardie, and academics like Max Mueller. The second, the blasphemous view of them, was obviously held by those who were in the later period, in one capacity or another, concerned with the administration of India: or those who felt impelled, sometimes because of their commitment to certain theoretical formulations on the development of societies, to treat all such impressions as unreal. Especially after 1860 it had become necessary to ensure that men who had had a long period of service in the British Indian administration or its ancillary branches and who also had the ability to write, should engage in the defence of British rule, especially its beginnings, and consequently attempt to refute any statements which implied that the British had damaged India in any significant manner.
While much ink has been spilt on such a controversy, little attempt is known to have been made for placing these statements or observations in their contextual perspective. Leaving Leitner’s work, most of these statements belong to the early decades of the nineteenth century. For the later British administrator, the difficulty of appreciating the substance of the controversy is quite understandable. For England had few schools for the children of ordinary people till about 1800. Even many of the older Grammar Schools were in poor shape at the time.
Moreover, the men who wrote about India (whether concerning its education, or its industry and crafts, or the somewhat higher real wages of Indian agricultural laborers compared to such wages in England) belonged to the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century society of Great Britain. Naturally when they wrote about a school in every village in India-whether that may or may not have been literally true-in contrast to the British situation, it must have appeared to them so. And though they did not much mention this contrast in so many words, it may reasonably be assumed that, as perceptive observers, it was the very contrast which led them to make such judgments.
These surveys, based not on mere impressions but on hard data, reveal a great deal: the nature of Indian education; its content; the duration for which it ordinarily lasted; the numbers actually receiving institutional education in particular areas; and most importantly, detailed information on the background of those benefiting from these institutions.
The idea of a school existing in every village, dramatic and picturesque in itself, attracted great notice and eclipsed the equally important details. The more detailed and hard facts have received hardly any notice or analysis. This is both natural and unfortunate. For these latter facts provide an sight into the nature of Indian society at that time. Deeper analysis of this data and adequate reflection on the results followed by required further research may help solve even the riddle of what has been termed ‘the legend of the 1,00,000 schools’.
According to this hard data, in terms of the content, the and proportion of those attending institutional school education, the situation in India in 1800 is certainly not inferior to what obtained in England then; and in many respects Indian schooling seems to have been much more extensive (and, it should be remembered, that it is a greatly damaged and disorganized India that one is referring to). The content of studies was better than what was then studied in England. The duration of study was more prolonged. The method of school teaching was superior and it is this very method which is said to have greatly helped the introduction of popular education in England but which had prevailed in India for centuries. School attendance, especially in the districts of the Madras Presidency, even in the decayed state of the period 1822-25, was proportionately far higher than the numbers in all variety of schools in England in 1800.
The conditions under which teaching took place in the Indian schools were less dingy and more natural; and, it was observed, the teachers in the Indian schools were generally more dedicated and sober than in the English versions. The only aspect, and certainly a very important one, where Indian institutional education seems to have lagged behind was with regard to the education of girls. Quite possibly, girl schooling may have been proportionately more extensive in England in 1800, and was definitely the case, a few decades later. Accounts of education in Indian do often state (though it is difficult to judge their substantive accuracy from the data which is so far known), that the absence of girls in schools was explained, however, by the fact that most of their education took place in the home,
It is, however, the Madras Presidency and Bengal-Bihar data which presents a kind of revelation. The data reveals the background of the teachers and the taught. It presents a picture which is in sharp contrast to the various scholarly pronouncements of the past 100 years or more, in which it had been assumed that education of any sort in India, till very recent decades, was mostly limited to the twice-born amongst the Hindoos, and amongst the Muslims to those from the ruling elite. The actual situation, which is revealed, was different, if not quite contrary, for at least amongst the Hindoos, in the districts of the Madras Presidency (and dramatically so in the Tamil-speaking areas) as well as the two districts of Bihar. It was the groups termed Soodras, and the castes considered below them who predominated in the thousands of the then still-existing schools in practically each of the areas.
Funding of schools - The last issue concerns the conditions and arrangements which alone could have made such a vast system of education feasible: the sophisticated operative fiscal arrangements of the pre-British Indian polity. Through these fiscal measures, substantial proportions of revenue had long been assigned for the performance of a multiplicity of public purpose. These seem to have stayed more or less intact through all the previous political turmoil’s and made such education possible. The collapse of this arrangement through a total centralization of revenue, as well as politics led to decay in the economy, social life, education, etc. this inference, if at all valid, warrants a re-examination of the various currently held intellectual and political assumptions with regard to the nature of pre-British Indian society, and its political and state structure.
Before discussing this last issue any further, however, it is necessary first to understand the various aspects of the educational data, and the controversy it gave rise to in the 1930s. Since the detailed data of the Madras Presidency is the least known and the most comprehensive, we shall examine it first.
Madras Presidency 1822-25 (Collectors Reports)
Details of Schools & Colleges
Speaking Language
Nos of Schools
Students in Schools
Total Population (1823 estimates)
1. Oriya
255
2977
3,32,015
2. Telegu
3,454
38,801
10,94,460
3. Kannada
551
7,268
9,59,469
4. Malayalam
759
14,153
9,07,575
5. Tamil
6,556
93,996
66,22,474

Total

11,575 
1,57,195 
99,09,993.

One Presidency of India had so many schools, were we that bad off!
Caste Division of Male school students
Speaking
Language
Brahmins, Chettris
Vysee

Soodra

Other Caste
Muslims
Total Male Students
1. Oriya
808
243
1001
886
27
2,965
2. Telegu.
14,014
7,676
10,076
4,755
1,639
38,160
3. Kannada
1,233
1,014
3,296
1,332
329
7,204
4.Malayalam
2,230
84
3,697
2,756
3,196
11,963
5.Tamil
11,926
4,442
57,873
13,196
5,453
92,890








Total

30,211
13,459
75,943 
22,925
10,644
1,53,182 
% of total
20
9
50 
15
6
100

Soodras & other caste are 65% of the total school going students and Brahmins only 20%. Compare that to 2004 and ask, why did this happen. Simply put British industrial & land revenue policy destroyed the labor class (who were into manufacturing) and the peasant. To know more log on to ‘Rediscovering India’, same section on site.
Notes – Oriya speaking covers Ganjam district. Telegu speaking covers Vizag, Rajamundry, Masulipatnam, Guntoor, Nellore, Cuddapah. Kannada speaking covers Bellary, Seringapatham. Malyalam speaking covers Malabar. Tamil speaking covers North & South Arcot, Chingleput, Tanjore, Trichnopoly, Madura, Tinnevelly, Coimbatore, Salem & Madras. College details excluded for lack of space. Corresponding nos were 1094 colleges having 5,431 students. These reports were reviewed by the Governor of Madras Presidency, Sir Thomas Munro on 10/3/1826.
Age of Enrollment, daily timings ETC - As mentioned earlier, and the data varies considerably from district to district. Many of the collectors provided information regarding the age at which boys (and perhaps girls too) were admitted to school, the usual age being five. According to the collector of Rajahmundry, ‘the fifth day of the fifth month of the fifth year of the boy’s age is the “lucky day” for his first entrance into school’, while according to the collector of Cuddapah, the age for admission for Brahmin boys was from the age of five to six and that for Soodras from six to eight. The collector of Cuddapah further mentioned two years as the usual period for which the boys stayed at school. Nellore and Salem mentioned 3 to 5 or 6 years, while most others stated that the duration of study varied from a minimum of five to about a maximum of 15 years. While some collectors did not think much of the then current education in the schools, or of the learning and scholarship of the teachers, some thought the education imparted useful. The collector of Madras observed: ‘It is generally admitted that before they (i.e. the students) attain their 13th year of age, their acquirements in the various branches of learning are uncommonly great.’
From the information given, it seems that the school functioned for fairly long hours: usually starting about 6 A.M., followed by one or two short intervals for meals, etc., and finishing at about sunset, or even later. Table 5 (not reproduced) charts out the information which was received on these points from the several collectors. The functioning of these schools, their methods of teaching, and the subjects taught are best described in the annexed accounts of Fra Palino Da Bartolomeo (A.D. 1796) and of Alexander Walker (ca 1820).
55. As in many other instances, it was unthinkable for the British that India could have had a proportionately larger number receiving education than those in England itself. Such views and judgments in fact were applied to every sphere and even the rights of the Indian peasantry were tailored accordingly. On the rights of the cultivator of land in India, the Fifth Report of the House of Commons stated: ‘It was accordingly decided, “that the occupants of land in India could establish no more right, in respect to the soil, than tenantry upon an estate in England can establish a right to the land, by hereditary residence:” and the meerassee of a village was therefore defined to be, a preference of cultivation derived from hereditary residence, but subject to the right of government as the superior lord of the soil, in what way it chooses, for the cultivation of its own lands.’ (House of Commons Papers, 1812, Volume VII, p.105)
Education of Girls - As mentioned earlier, the number of girls attending school was very small. Leaving aside the district of Malabar and the Jeypoor division of Vizagapatam district, the girls from the Brahmin, Chettri, and Vysee castes were practically non-existent in schools. There were, however, some Muslim girls receiving school education: 56 in Trichnopoly, and 27 in Salem. The Hindoo girls who attended school, though again not in any large number, were from the Soodra and other Hindoo castes; and according to the collectors of Masulipatam, Madura, Tinnevelly and Coimbatore, most of them were stated to be dancing girls, or girls who were presumably going to be devdasis in the temples. Table 8 presents the district and caste wise number of the girls attending school, or said to be receiving private tuition.
As will be noticed from Table 9, the position in Malabar, as also in Jeypoor Zamindary of Vizagapatam district was much different. The relative numbers of girls and boys attending school in these two areas are presented in Table 8 below:
In percentage terms of the total, the proportion of girls to boys in school was the highest. 29.7%, in the Jeypoor Zamindary of the Vizagapatam district. Even more surprising, the proportion of Brahmin girls to Brahmin boys in school was as high as 37% Similarly, in Malabar the proportion of Muslim girls to Muslim boys in school being at 35.1% is truly astonishing. Even amongst the Vysees, the Soodras and the other castes in Malabar, the proportion of girls to boys was fairly high at 15.5% 19.1% and 12.4% respectively; the proportion of the totals being 18.3%. That two such widely separated areas (Malabar on the west coast while Jeypoor zamindary being in the hilly tracts on the southern border of Orissa) had such a sociological similarity requires deeper study.

Adam’s Report on Bengal      
Thirteen years after the initiation of the survey in Madras Presidency, a more limited semi-official survey of indigenous education was taken up in the Presidency of Bengal. They are called Reports on the State of Education in Bengal 1836 & 1838.
Inspite of the controversies which Adam’s reports have given rise to, the most notable one being his mention of there being perhaps 1,00,000 village schools still existing in Bengal and bihar- the total impression produced by them is one of extensive decay of these institutions. Adam was no great admirer of Indian education, he believed and brought home the point that the British should interest itself in elementary & higher Indian education. Further he had initially come to Bengal in 1818 as a Baptist missionary. Though he left missionary after a few years, was now a journalist, he saw the necessity of evangelizing India and its westernization. Though his reports were not formal documents they were sanctioned & financed by the Governor General himself.
The more important point that comes through Adam’s voluminous writing was the detail & variety of data that he was able to collect, from post 1800 existing sources and through his own investigations. Information on caste composition of pupils, average age of teachers and books in use still have great relevance.
1st Report: Survey of Post 1800 material  - his conclusions, one every village had atleast one school and in all probability in Bengal and Bihar with 1,50,748 villages, there will still be 1,00,000 villages that have these schools. Two on the basis of personal observation & evidence collected he inferred there were app 100 institutions of higher learning in each district meaning app 1,800 such institutions and 10,800 scholars in them. He held that while elementary schools were generally held in the homes of some of the most respectable native inhabitants, institutions of higher learning were of clay with 3-11 rooms. These were also used as residences of scholars.
2nd Report: Survey of Nattore Thana (district Rajshahy) - the results of this Nattore survey of 485 villages were tabulated village by village. Population was 1,20,928; number of elementary schools was 27, schools of higher learning 38 (latter being all Hindoo). Number of scholars in elementary schools was 262 average student age was 8-14 while in schools learning corresponding number was 397 average age was 16 with range being 11-27. While the number of elementary schools was low, these 485 villages had 123 native general medical practioners, 205 village doctors, 21 mostly Brahmin smallpox inoculators practicing according to the old Indian method.
3rd Report: Survey of 5 districts - Findings of his surveys in part of the district of Murshedabad and whole districts of Beerbhoom, Burdwan, South Behar and Tirhoot. The total number of schools of all types in the selected districts were 2,566 of which Bengali were 43%, Persian 27%, Sanskrit 14% and others.
Four stages of School Instruction
• 1 seldom exceeded ten days during which the young child was taught to form the letters of the alphabet on the ground with a small stick or bamboo.
• 2 extended from 2 ½ to four years, use of palm leaf as the material on which writing was performed, taught to read 7 write, memorise the numeration table as far as 100 and the Katha Table (a land measure table).
• 3 extended from 2-3 years which are employed in writing on the plantain leaf. Arithmetic rules were taught.
• 4 stage lasted upto two years, writing was done on paper. Scholar was expected to be able to read Ramayana, Mansa Mangal at home as well as qualified in accounts and writing of letters.
Elementary Education for all Sections - the first striking point from this survey is the wide social strata to which both the taught & the teachers in the elementary schools belonged. It is true that the greater proportion of teachers came from Kayasthas, Brahmins, Sadgop and Aguri castes. Yet, quite a number came from 30 others caste groups, and even the Chandals has 6 teachers. The more surprising figure is the 61 Dom and 61 Chandal school students in the district of Burdwan, nearly equal to the number of Vaidya students, 126 in that district.
Teachings of Agricultural & commercial accounts was widely prevalent in native schools as compared to the Christian ones.
Institutions of Sanskritic Learning - schools of learning in the surveyed districts (in all 353) numbered as high as 190 in Burdwan (1358 scholars) and as low as 27 in South Behar  (437 scholars). The teachers (355 in all) were predominantly Brahmins. Subjects taught were Grammar 9 (1,424 students), Logic (378 students), Law (336 students) and Literature (120 students). Other subjects taught were mythology, astrology, rhetoric, medicine, Vedanta, tantra amongst others.
W. ADAM on State of Native Medical Practice in Bengal - The state of Native Medical Practice in the (Rajshahy) district is so intimately connected with the welfare of the people that it could not be wholly overlooked; and as the few facts that I have collected tend additionally to illustrate their character and condition, it would be improper to omit them. They are submitted with deference to those who may have made professional inquiries, and can form a professional judgment on the subject.
The number of those, who may be called general practitioners and who rank highest in the native medical profession in Nattore is 123, of whom 89 are Hindus and 34 are Mahomedans. The Medical School at Vaidya Belghariya possesses considerable interest, since it is, as far as I can ascertain, the only institution of the kind in the district, and the number of such institutions throughout Bengal is, I believe, very limited. The two medical teachers of this school are employed as domestic physicians by two wealthy families, and they have each also a respectable general practice. As a domestic physician, the junior teacher has a fixed salary of twenty-five rupees a month; while the senior teacher in the same capacity has only fifteen rupees a month, and that only as long his attendance may be required during periods of sickness in the family that employs him. I have spoken of that family as wealthy, but it is only comparatively so being in very reduced circumstances; and to that cause rather than to the low estimation in which the physician is held, we must ascribe the scant remuneration he receives.
At another place, Hajra Nattore, No.26, there are three educated Hindu practitioners, all three Brahmans and brothers and more or less acquainted with Sanscrit, having acquired the grammar of the language at Bejpara Amhatti, and subsequently applied their knowledge of it to the study of the medical works in that language. The eldest has practiced since he was eighteen, and he is now sixty-two years of age, and employs his leisure in instructing his two nephews. On an average of the year he estimates the income derived from his practice at five rupees a month, while one of his brothers who is in less repute estimate his own income at three rupees.
At a third place, Haridev Khalasi, No.100. there are four educated Hindu practitioners, three of whom appeared to be in considerable repute for skill and learning. They were all absent, and I had not an opportunity of conversing with them: but their neighbors and friends estimated their monthly professional income at eight, ten, and twelve rupees, respectively. There are at most two or three other educated Hindu physicians in Nattore, and all the rest are professionally uneducated, the only knowledge they possess of medicine being derived from Bengali translations of Sanscrit works which describe the symptoms of the principal diseases and prescribe the articles of the native material medica that should be employed for their cure, and the proportions in which they should be compounded. I have not been able to ascertain that there is a single educated Musalman physician in Nattore, and consequently the 34 Mahomedan practitioners I have mentioned, rank with the uneducated class of Hindu practitioners, deriving all their knowledge of medicine from Bengali translations of Sanscrit works to the prescriptions of which they servility adhere.
The only difference that I have been able to discover between the educated and uneducated classes of native practitioners is that the former prescribe with greater confidence and precision from the original authorities, and the latter with greater doubt and uncertainly from loose and imperfect translations. The mode of treatment is substantially the same, and in each case is fixed and invariable. Great attention is paid to the symptoms of disease, a careful and strict comparison being made between the descriptions of the supposed disease in the standard medical works and the actual symptoms in the case of the patient. When the identity is satisfactorily ascertained, there is then no doubt as to the practice to be adopted for each disease has its peculiar remedy in the works of established repute, and to depart from their prescriptions would be an act of unheard of presumption. The medicines administered are both vegetable and mineral. The former are divided into those which are employed in the crude state, as barks, leaves, common or wild roots, and fruits etc.: and those which are sold in the druggist’s shop as camphor, cloves, cardamoms, etc, They are administered either externally or in the forms of pill, powder, electuary, and decoction.
The preceding class of practitioners consists of individuals who at best know nothing of medicine as a science, but practice it as an art according to a prescribed routine, and it may well be supposed that many, especially of the uneducated class, are nothing but quacks. Still as a class they rank higher both in general estimation and in usefulness than the village doctors. Of these there are not fewer than 205 in Nattore. They have not the least semblance of medical knowledge, and they in general limit their prescriptions to the simplest vegetable preparations, either preceded or followed by the pronouncing of an incantation and by striking and blowing upon the body. Their number proves that they are in repute in the villages; and the fact is ascribable to the influence which they exercise upon the minds of the superstitious by their incantations. The village doctors are both men and women; and most of them are Mahomedans, like the class to which they principally address themselves.
The smallpox inoculators in point of information and respectability come next to the class of general practitioners. There are 21 of them in Nattore, for the most part Brahmans, but uninstructed and ignorant, exercising merely the manual art of inoculation. One man sometimes inoculates from 100 to 500 children in a day, receiving for each operation a fixed rate of payment varying from one to two annas; the less amount if the number of children is great, the greater amount if the number is small. The cowpox has not, I believe, been introduced into this district amongst the natives, except at the head station. Elsewhere the smallpox inoculators have found its opponents, but, as far as I can understand, their opposition does not arise from interested motives, for the cowpox inoculation would give them as much labor and profit as they now have. Their opposition arises; I am assured, from the prejudice against using cowpox. The veneration in which the cow is held is well known, and they fear to participate in a practice, which seems to be founded on some injury done to that animal when the matter was originally extracted. The spread of the cowpox would probably be most effectually accomplished by the employment of Mussalman inoculators whose success might in due time convince the Brahman inoculators of their mistake.
Midwives are another class of practitioners that may be noticed, although it has been denied that Hindus have any. An eminent London physician, in his examination before the Medical Committee of the House of Commons, is stated to have affirmed that the inhabitants of China have no women-midwives, and no practitioners in midwifery at all. ‘Of course,’ it is added ‘the African nations and the Hindus are the same.’ I enquired and noted the number of women mid-wives (there is not a man midwife in the country) in the villages of Nattore, and find that they amount to 297. They are no doubt sufficiently ignorant, as are probably the majority of women midwives at home.
Still lower than the village doctors there is a numerous class of pretenders who go under the general name of conjurors or charmers. The largest division of this class are the snake-con-jurors, their number in the single police sub-division of Nattore being not less than 722. There are few villages without one, and in some villages there are as many as ten. I could if it were required indicate the villages and the number in each; but instead of incumbering Table I with such details. I have judged it sufficient to state the total number in this place. They profess to cure the bites of poisonous snakes by incantations or charms. In this districts, particularly during the rainy season, snakes are numerous and excite much terror among the villagers. Nearly the whole district forming, it is believed, an old bed of the Ganges, lies very low; and the rapid increase of the waters during the rainy season drives the land-snakes from their holes, and they seek refuge in the houses of the inhabitants who hope to obtain relief from their bites by the incantations of the conjurors.
Some of these details may appear, and in themselves probably are, unimportant, but they help to afford an insight into the character of the humblest classes of native society who constitute the great mass of the people, and whose happiness and improvement are identical with the prosperity of the country; and although they exhibit the proofs of a most imbecile superstition, yet it is superstition which does not appear to have its origin or support in vice or depravity, but in a childish ignorance of the common laws of nature which the most imperfect education or the most limited mental cultivation would remove. These superstitions are neither Hindu nor Mahomedan, being equally repudiated by the educated portions of both classes of religionists. They are probably antecedent to both systems of faith and have been handed down from time immemorial as a local and hereditary religion of the cultivators of the soil, who amid the extraordinary changes which in successive ages and under successive races of conquerors this country has undergone, appear always to have been left in the same degraded and prostate condition in which they are now found.
From Adam’s Reports on Bengal & Bihar Nos
1.
No of Schools Surveyed
1406
2.
Avg age of students
9.71
3.
Nos of Students
24,250
4. of which
Hindus
22,957

Muslims
1,260
5.
Total Teachers
2,261

                                                             Institutions of Sanscritic Learning
1.
Total Population
64,62,404
2.
Number of Schools
353
3.
Nos of Teachers
355
4.
Nos of Students
2,555

                                                                               Subjects of Study
1.
Grammar
1,424
2.
Lexicology
48
3.
Literature
120
4.
Law
336
5.
Logic
378
6.
Mythology
82
7.
Rhetoric
19
8.
Vedanta
13
9.
Mimansa
2
10.
Sankhya
1
11.
Medicine
18
12.
Astrology
78
13.
Tantras
4
14.
Persian
3,479
15.
Arabic
175
16.
Ordinary Schools
24,250

(The book has numbers for individual districts of Murshidabad, Beerbhoom, Burdwan, South Behar, Tirhoot. I am sharing total nos).

Leitner on Punjab   
 
Some 45 years after Adam, DR g w Leitner (one tome principal of Govt college, Lahore and for sometime Director of Public Instruction in Panjab), prepared an even more detailed survey of indigenous education there. The survey was similar to Adam but much less complementary about British rule. As time passed, the inability of the British rulers to face any criticism grew correspondingly.
Leitner’s research shows that at the time of the annexation of Panjab –
Year

Nos of Pupils
1. 1850
Lowest computation of pupils in schools of various denominations acquainted with reading, writing, and some sort of computation.
3,30,000.
2. 1882
Same as in 1
1,90,000.

Furthermore, 35-40 years ago, thousands of them belonged to Arabic & Persian colleges, in which oriental literature and systems of law, logic, philosophy and medicine were taught to the highest standards. Persian was the official language of India till 1837. For extracts from Leitner’s work see below.
History of Education in the Panjab since Annexation and in 1882, Leitner on Education in the Panjab (extracts)
General - I am about to relate-I hope without extenuation or malice-the history of the contact of a form of European with one of Asiatic civilization; how, in spite of the best intentions, the most public-spirited officers, and a generous Government that had the benefit of the traditions of other provinces, the true education of the Panjab was crippled, checked, and is nearly destroyed; how opportunities for its healthy revival and development were either neglected or perverted; and how, far beyond the blame attaching to individuals, or system stands convicted or worse than official failure. Whether it is possible to rouse to renewed exertion, on behalf of its own education, the most loyal population that has ever been disappointed, is a question, which the following pages will only partially attempt to answer. Much will of course, depend on the wise adaptation of the noble principle just propounded-of ‘local self-government’-to a department of the Administration-that of education, -in which above all others, it can be introduced with perfect safety and the greatest political advantage.
Respect for learning has always been the redeeming feature of ‘the East’. To this the Panjab has formed no exception. Torn by invasion and civil war, it ever preserved and added to educational endowments. The most unscrupulous chief, the avaricious moneylender, and even the freebooter, vied with the small landowner in making peace with his conscience by founding schools and rewarding the learned. There was not a mosque, a temple, and a dharmasala that had not a school attached to it, to which the youth flocked chiefly for religious education. There were few wealthy men, who did not entertain a Maulvi, Pandit or Guru, to teach their sons, and long with them the sons of friends and dependents. There were also thousands of secular schools, frequented alike by Mahomedens, Hindus and Sikhs, in which Persian or Lunde was taught. There were hundreds of learned men who gratuitously taught their co-religionists, and sometimes all-comes, for the sake of God-Lillah, There was not a single village who did not take a pride in devoting a portion of his produce to a respected teacher.
In respectable Mahomedan families husbands taught their wives, and they their children nor did the Sikhs prove in that respect to be unworthy of their appellation of ‘learners and disciples’. In short the lowest computation gives us 3,30,000 pupils (against little more than 1,90,000 at present) in the schools of the various denominations who were acquainted with reading, writing, and some method of computation; whilst thousands of them belonged to Arabic and Sanskrit colleges, in which Oriental Literature and systems of Oriental Law, Logic, Philosophy, and Medicine were taught to the highest standards. Tens of thousands also acquired a proficiency in Persian, which is now rarely reached in Government and aided schools or colleges. Though all schools there breathed a spirit of devotion to education for its own sake and for its influence on the character and on religious culture; whilst even the sons of Banyas who merely learnt what they absolutely required in order to gain a livelihood looked with respect, amounting to adoration on their humble Pandhas, who had taught them the elements of two “Rs’.
We have changed all this. The annexation disturbed the minds of believes in Providence, and all that was respectable kept, as much as possible, aloof from the invader-just as the best Englishman would not be the first to seek the favor of a foreign conqueror.
Classification of Indigenous Schools
I. Sikh Indigenous Education
1. Gurmukhi Schools
II. Mohammedan Indigenous Education
2. Maktabs
3. Madrasas, religious and secular
4. Koran Schools.
III. Hindu Indigenous Education
5. Chatsalas (for the trading community)
6. Patshalas (religious)
7. Patshala (semi-religious)
8. Secular Schools of various kinds and grades
IV. Mixed Indigenous Education
9. Persian Schools
10. Vernacular Schools
11. Anglo-Vernacular Schools
V. Female Indigenous Education
12. (a) Female Schools for Sikh girls
(b) ---do--- Mohammedan girls
(c) Instruction at Hindu homes
With a more minute subdivision the indigenous schools might have to be classified as follows: -
I. Maktabs or Madrasas
1. Arabic Schools and Colleges (of various grades and specialties)
2. Perso-Arabic Schools and Colleges (of various grades and specialties)
3. Koran Schools (where merely or chiefly the Koran is read)
4. Perso-Koran Schools
5. Koran-Arabic Schools
6. Perso-Koran-Arabic Schools
7. Persian Schools
8. Persian-Urdu Schools
9. Persian-Urdu-Arabic Schools
10. Arabic Medical Schools
11. Perso-Arabic Medical Schools
II. Gurmukhi Schools
12. Gurmukhi Schools
13. Gurmukhi and Lande Schools
III. Mahajani Schools
14. Lande Schools of different kinds (Chatsalas)
15. Nagari-Lande Schools (Chatsalas)
16. Perso-Lande Schools
IV. Patshalas
17. Nagari-Sanscrit Schools
18. Sanscrit religious Schools
19. Sanscrit secular literary Schools (cultivating various branches)
20. Sanscrit semi-secular Schools (cultivating various branches)
21. Sanscrit Medical Schools (Chiefly)
22. Hindi-Sanscrit Schools
23. Sanscrit astrological or astronomical Schools (Chiefly)
V. Female Indigenous Schools
(classified as above)
List of Sanscrit books usedBalbodh                                                 Akshar dipika
                                                              I.     Grammar
Saraswat
Manorama
Chandrika
Bhashya
Laghu Kaumudi
Paniniya Vyakaran
Kaumudi
Siddhant Kaumudi
Shekar
Prakrita Prakasa

                                                             II.    Lexicology
Amar Kosh
Malini Kosh
Halayudh


                                              III.  Poetry, the Drama and Religious History
Raghu Vans
Mahabharat
Megh Duta
Venisanhara
Magh
Sakuntala
Kirat Arjun
Naishadha Charita
Ramayan
Mrichhakatika
Sri Mad Bhagwat and other Puranas
Kumara Sambhava

                                                                   IV. Rhetoric
Kavya Dipik
Kavya Prakash
Sahitya Darpana
Dasu Rupa
Kuvlayanund


                                              V.  Mathematics, Astronomy & Astrology
Siddbant Shriomani
Nil Kanthi
Mahurta Chintamani
Brihat Jatak
Shighra Bodh
Parasariya
Garbh Lagana


                                                            VI. Medical Science
Sham Raj
Nighant
Susruta
Sharang Dhar
Charaka
Bhashya Parichehed
Madhava Nidan
Vagbhat

                                                                    VII. Logic
Nyaya Sutra Vritti
Gada dhari
Vyutpattivad
Tarkalankar
Tark Sangrah
Kari kavali

                                                                  VIII. Vedant                                                      Atma Bodh Sarirak, Panch Dashi
                                                                       IX. Law
Manu Smriti
Parasara Smriti
Yagya Valk Gautama

Mitakshara


                                                                   X. Philosophy
Sankhya Tatwa Kaumudi
Patanjali, Sutra Britti Sutra with Bhashya
Sankhya Pravachan Bhashya Yoga Sutra 
Vedanta, Vedantsar (see also above)
Vaiseshika, Siddhant
Mimansa, Sutra with
Muktavali Sutra with a commentary
Bhashya Artha Sangraha

                                                                  XI. Prosody
Srut Bodh
Vritta Ratnakar

                                                              XII. Prose Literature
Hitopadesa
Vasavadatta
Dasa Kumara Charita


                                                                        Religion
Rigveda Sanhita (rare)
Samaveda, Mantra Bhaga
Yajurveda, Shukla Yajur
Chhandasya Archika (very rare)
Vajasneyi Sanhita


End of Extract.
The new rulers, educationists or missionaries were interested in a particular art like their writings on the manufacture of iron & steel, cotton & textiles but their interest lay in the method & technology and not how these were learnt.  Another reason for lack of documentation of techniques was that most learning was done at home, passed from father to son or from one group to another.
There is a sense of widespread neglect & decay in the field of indigenous education within a few decades after the onset of the British rule. This is the major impression, which emerges from the reports on Bengal, Madras Presidency and Panjab. The decay increased with time. The 1769-70 famine in Bengal (acc to the British one-third of the population actually perished) may be taken as a forerunner of what was to come. By 1900 it became general Indian belief that India had been decimated by British rule. 
British Strategy, Impact       
Friends this chapter has four important parts. One is comparison of education in Britain & Madras Presidency, two is how were indigenous schools organized, three is British strategy to kill indigenous educational system and four impact of point three.
The significance of what Gandhiji said at Chatham House in October 1931 ought to have been understood not in the literal way in which Philip Hartog did, but within the total context of Mahatma Gandhi’s address, which attempted to reveal the overall disruption and decline of Indian society and its institutions under British rule. That a great decay had set in by the 1820s, if not a few decades earlier, in the sphere of education was admitted by the Madras Presidency survey, as well as by W. Adam with regard to Bengal and Bihar. In 1822-25, the number of those in ordinary schools was put at over 1,50,000 in the Madras Presidency. Evidently, the inference that the number was appreciably, perhaps a great deal higher some 20 0r 30 years earlier, cannot be ruled out. At any rate, nowhere was there any suggestion made that it was much less than it had been in 1822-25.
England-Madras comparison 

England
Madras Presidency
Population
95,43,610 (1811)
1,28,50,941 (1823)
Nos attending schools
App 75,000 (note below)
1,57,195 (ref chapter 20

Note – more than half of this number of 75,000 in English schools consisted of those who attended school at the most only for 2-3 hours on a Sunday.
However, after about 1803, every year a marked increase took place in the number of those attending schools in England. The result: the number of 75,000 attending any short of school around 1800 rose to 6,74,883 by 1818, and 21,44,377 in 1851, i.e. an increase of about 29 times in a period of about fifty years. It is true that the content of this education in England did not improve much during this half century. Neither did the period spent in school increase: from more than an average of one year in 1835 to about two years in 1851. The real implication of Gandhiji’s observation, and of the information provided by the Madras Presidency collectors, W. Adam and G. W. Leitner, is that for the following 50-100 years, what happened in India-within the developing situation of relative collapse and stagnation-proved the reverse of the development taking place in England.
It is such a feeling, and the intuition of such an occurrence, that drove Gandhiji, firstly, to make his observation in London in October 1931, and secondly, disinclined to withdraw it eight years later. Gandhiji seemed to be looking at the issue from a historical, social, and a human viewpoint. In marked contrast, men like Sir Philip Hartog, as so commonly characteristic of the specialist, were largely quibbling about phrases; intent solely on picking holes in what did not fit the prevailing western theories of social and political development. 
Statistical comparisons were what Sir Philip Hartog and many others in his time wanted. And these can, to a large extent, settle this debate: some comparison of the 1822-25 Madras school-attending scholars is made here with the Madras Presidency data pertaining to the 1880s and 1890s. Because of incompleteness of the earlier data available from Bengal and Bihar, and also from the Presidency of Bombay, such a comparison does not seem possible for these areas, much less for the whole of India.
According to the 1879-80 Report of the Director of Public Instruction for the Madras Presidency, the total number of educational institutions of all types (including colleges, secondary, middle and primary schools, and special, or technical Institutions) then numbered 10,553. Out of these, the primary schools numbered 10,106. The total number attending them: 2,38,960 males, and 29,419 females. The total population of the Presidency at this time is stated as 3,13,08,872. While the number of females attending these institutions was evidently larger in 1879-80 compared to 1822-25, the proportionate numbers of males was clearly much reduced. Using the same computation as those applied in 1822-25 (i.e. one-ninth of the total population treated as of school-going age), those of this age amongst the male population (taking males and females as equal) would have numbered 17,39,400. The number of males in primary schools being 2,18,840, the proportion of this age group in schools thus turns out to be 12.58%. This proportion in the decayed educational situation of 1822-25 was put at one-fourth, i.e. at 25%. If one were to take even the total of all those in every type of institution, i.e. the number 2,38,960, the proportion in 1879-80 rises only to 13.74%.
From 1879-80 to 1884-85, there was some increase, however, to be found. While the population went down slightly to 3,08,68,504, the total number of male scholars went up to 3,79,932, and that of females to 50,919. Even this larger number of male scholars came up only to 22.15% of the computed school-age male population; and of those in primary schools to 18.33%. These figures are much lower than the 1822-25 officially calculated proportion. Incidentally, while there was an overall increase in number of females in educational institutions, the number of Muslim girls in such institutions in the district of Malabar in 1884-85 was only 705. Here it may be recollected that 62 years earlier, in August 1823, the number of Muslim girls in schools in Malabar was 1,122; and, at that time, the population of Malabar would have been below half of that in 1884-85.
Eleven years later in 1895-96, the number in all types of educational institutions increased further. While the population had grown to 3,56,41,828, the number of those in educational institutions had increased to 6,81,174 males, and 1,10,460 females. It is at this time then that the proportion (taking all those males attending educational institutions) rose to 34.4%: just about equal to the proportion which Thomas Munro had computed in 1826 as one-third (33.3%) of those receiving any education whether in indigenous institutions, or at home. Even at this period, i.e. 70 years after Munro’s computation, however, the number of males in primary education was just 28%.
Coming to 1890-1900, the last year of the nineteenth century, the number of males in educational institutions went up to 7,33,923 and of females to 1,29,068. At this period, the number of school-age males was calculated by the Madras Presidency Director of Public Instruction as 26,42,909, thus giving a percentage of 27.8% attending any educational institution. Even taking a sympathetic view of the later data, what clearly comes out of these comparisons is that the proportion of those in educational institutions at the end of the nineteenth century was still no larger than the proportions estimated by Thomas Munro of the number attending the institutions of the decaying indigenous system of the Madras Presidency in 1822-25.
The British authorities in the late nineteenth century must have been tempted-as we find state authorities are in our own times-to show their achievements in brighter hues and thus err on the side of inflating figures: therefore, this later data may be treated with some skepticism. This was certainly not the case with the 1822-25 data which, in the climate of that period, could not have been considered inflated in any sense of the word.
From the above, it may be inferred that the decay which is mentioned in 1822-25 proceeded to grow in strength during the next six decades. During this period, most of the indigenous institutions more or less disappeared. Any surviving remnants were absorbed by the late 19th century British system. Further, it is only after 1890 that the new system begins to equal the 1822-25 officially calculated proportions of males in schools quantitatively. Its quality, in comparison to the indigenous system, is another matter altogether.
The above comparison of the 1822-25 Madras indigenous education data with the data from the 1880s and 1890s period also seems to provide additional support-if such support were required-to the deductions which G.W. Leitner had come to in 1882. These reveal the decline of indigenous education in the Panjab in the previous 35-40 years.
IMP - How were indigenous schools organized - There is voluminous data in British records, which confirm the view that in terms of basic expenses, both education and medical care, like the expenses of local police, maintenance of irrigation facilities had primary claims on revenue. It was this revenue that maintained elementary & higher education. Parents & guardians of children contributed too.
According to the Bengal-Bihar data of the 1770-1780s, revenue was divided into various categories in addition to what was called the Khalsa i.e. the sources whose revenue was received in the exchequer of the ruling authority of the province or some larger unit. These categories excluding khalsa constituted app 80% of the revenue. 2 of these categories were referred to Chakeran Zemin and Bazee Zemin in Bengal/Bihar during this period. The former referred to recipients of revenue who were engaged in administrative, economic, accounting activities etc and were remunerated by assignments of revenue. The latter referred to those who, according to the British, were in receipt of what were termed ‘religious & charitable allowances’. A large part of this went to maintenance of religious places; others went to poets, joshis, to medical practioners etc. The number of maths & temples in Tanjore around 1813 were 4,000. The position in Bombay/Madras Presidency was not very different. 
About one third of the total revenue (from agriculture & sea ports) were according to ancient practice assigned for the requirements of the social & cultural infrastructure till the British overturned it all. In Bengal the rate of assessment was fairly low, the rate charged for Bazee Zemin was around one quarter to one third of rate which the British had begun to demand from the lands which were treated as Khalsa. The British increased the quantum of land revenue, made it payable twice a year at fixed timed (irrespective of weather conditions), had to be paid in cash not produce meaning the farmer had to sell his produce in the market to pay revenue exposing himself to the vagaries of market pricing. These moves towards centralization of revenue ensured that there was hardly any revenue to pay for social & cultural infrastructure resulting in its death.
The Collector of Bellary A D Campbell came out with an exhaustive report on indigenous education. He said one that the degenration of education is ascribable to the gradual but general impoverishment of the country, two that the means of the manufacturing classes have been greatly diminished by the introduction of our European manufacturers, three that the transfer of capital of the country from the native govt and their officers who spent their money in India to Europeans who were debarred from spending it in India meant that the support given to India’s population in learning, science etc vanished. Four he added “that of the 533 institutions for education now existing in his district, I am ashamed to say not one now derives support from the state but there is no doubt that in former times under Hindoo govts, very large grants were issued for the support of learning”.
Demonizing Indigenous Education
This brings us finally to an assessment of the content of the indigenous system of education. The long letter of the much-quoted A.D. Campbell, collector of Bellary, had been used a century earlier by London to establish that in India reading and writing were acquired solely with a view to the transaction of business’, that nothing whatever is learnt except reading, and with the exception of writing and a little arithmetic, the education of the great majority goes no farther,’
The question of content is crucial. It is the evaluation of content which led to indigenous education being termed ‘bad’ and hence to its dismissal; and in Gandhiji’s phrase, to it’s up rooting. Yet it was not ‘the mere reading and writing and a little arithmetic which was of any consequence in such a decision. For, schools education in contemporary England, except in the sphere of religious teaching, covered the same ground and probably, much less thoroughly. As mentioned earlier, the average period of schooling in 1835 England was just about one year, and even in 1851, only two. Further, as stated by A.E. Dobbs, ‘in some century schools, writing was excluded for fear of evil consequences.’
While the limitless British hunger for revenue-so forcefully described by Campbell-starved the Indian system of the very resources which it required to survive, its cultural and religious content and structure provoked deliberate attempts aimed at its total extermination. It was imperative to somehow uproot the Indian indigenous system for the relatively undisturbed maintenance and continuance of British rule. It is the same imperative which decided Macaulay, Bertinck, etc., to deliberately neglect large-scale school education-proposed by men like Adam - till a viable system of Anglicized higher education had first been established in the country.
In 1813, this bold intention was publicly and powerfully expressed by William Wilberforce when he depicted Indians as being ‘deeply sunk, and by their religious superstitions fast bound in the lowest depths of moral and social wretchedness. T.B. Macaulay expressed similar views, merely using different imagery. He commented that the totality of Indian knowledge and scholarship did not even equal the contents of a single shelf of a good European library’, and that all the historical information contained in books written in Sanskrit was less valuable than what may be found in the most paltry abridement used at preparatory schools in England. To Macaulay, all Indian knowledge, if not despicable, was at least absurd: absurd history, absurd metaphysics, absurd physics, and absurd theology.
A little later, Karl Marx seems to have had similar impressions of India-this, despite his great study of British state papers and other extensive material relating to India. Writing in the New York Dally Tribune on 25 June 1853, he shared the view of the perennial nature of Indian misery, and approvingly quoted an ancient Indian text which according to him placed ‘the commencement of Indian misery in an epoch even more remote than the Christian creation of the world.’ According to him, Indian life had always been undignified, stagnatory, vegetative, and passive, given to a brutalizing worship of nature instead of man being the ‘sovereign of nature-as contemplated in contemporary European thought. And, thus Karl Marx concluded: Whatever may have been the crimes of England in India, she was the unconscious tool of history in bringing about-what Marx so anxiously looked forward to-India’s westernization.
The complete denunciation and rejection of Indian culture and civilization was however, left to the powerful pen of James Mill. This he did in his monumental three volume History of British India, first published in 1817. Henceforth, Mill’s History became an essential reading and reference book for those entrusted with administering the British Indian Empire. From the time of its publication till recently, the History in fact provided the frame work for the writing of most histories of India. For this reason, the impact of his judgments on India and its people should never be underestimated.
According to Mill, ‘the same insincerity, mendacity, and perfidy; the same indifference to the feelings of others; the same prostitution and venality’ were the conspicuous characteristics of both the Hindoos and the Muslims. The Muslims, however, were perfuse, when possessed of wealth, and devoted to pleasure; the Hindoos almost always penurious and ascetic; and ‘in truth, the Hindoo like the eunuch, excels in the qualities of a slave.’ Furthermore, similar to the Chinese, the Hindoos were ‘dissembling, treacherous, mendacious, to an excess which surpasses even the usual measure of uncultivated society.’ Both the Chinese and the Hindoos were ‘disposed to excessive exaggeration with regard to everything relating to themselves.’ Both were cowardly and unfeeling.’ Both were in the highest degree conceited of themselves, and full of affected contempt for others.’ And, above all, both were in physical sense, disgustingly unclean in their persons and houses.’
Compared to the people of India, according to Mill, the people of Europe even during the feudal ages, (and notwithstanding the vices of the Roman Church and the defects of the schoolmen), were superior in philosophy. Further, the Europeans were greatly superior, notwithstanding the defects of the feudal system, in the institutions of Government and in laws.’ Even their poetry was ‘beyond all comparison preferable to the poetry of the Hindoos.’ Mill felt it was hardly necessary to assert that in the art of war ‘the Hindoos have always been greatly inferior to the warlike nations of Europe.’ The agriculture of the Europeans ‘surpassed exceedingly that of the Hindoos’, and in India the roads were little better than, and the rivers without bridges: there was not one original treatise on medicine, considered as a science, and surgery was unknown among the Hindoos. Further still, ‘compared with the slavish and dastardly spirit of the Hindoos’; the Europeans were to be placed in an elevated rank with regard to manners and character, and their manliness and courage.
Where the Hindoos surpassed the Europeans was in delicate manufactures, ‘particularly in spinning, weaving and dyeing; in the fabrication of trinkets; and probably in the art of polishing and setting the precious stones; and more so in effeminate gentleness, and the winning arts of address. However, in the arts of painting, sculpture, and architecture the Hindoos in no way excelled Europeans. Further, ‘the Hindoo loom, with all its appurtenances, is coarse and ill-fashioned, to a degree hardly less surprising than the fineness of the commodity which it is the instrument of producing.’ The very dexterity in the use of their tools and implements became a point against the Indians. For as James Mill proclaimed: ‘A dexterity in the use of its own imperfect tools is a common attribute of rude society.’
These reflections and judgments led to the obvious conclusion, and Mill wrote:
Our ancestors, however, though rough, were sincere; but under the glossing exterior of the Hindoo lies a general disposition to deceit and perfidy. In fine, it cannot be doubted that, upon the whole, the gothic nations, as soon as they became a settled people, exhibit the marks of a superior character and civilization to those of the Hindoos.
As to James Mill, so also to Wilberforce, Macaulay, and Karl Marx and the thought and approaches they represented (for it is more as spokesmen of such thinking and approaches that they are important in the context of India rather than as outstanding individuals), the manners, customs and civilization of India were intrinsically barbarous. And to each of them India could become civilized only by discarding its Indianness, and by adopting utility as the object of every pursuit according to Mill; by embracing his peculiar brand of Christianity for Wilberforce; by becoming anglicized, according to Macaulay; and for Marx by becoming western.
Given such complete agreement on the nature of Indian culture and institutions, it was inevitable that because of its crucial social and cultural role. Indian education fared as it did. To speed up its demise, it not only had to be ridiculed and despised, but steps also had to be taken so that it was starved out of its resource base. True, as far as the known record can tell, no direct dismantling or shutting up of each and every institution was resorted to, or any other more drastic physical measures taken to achieve this demise. Such steps were unnecessary; the reason being that the fiscal steps together with ridicule, performed the task far more effectively.
An official indication of what was to come was conveyed by London to the Madras Presidency when it acknowledge receipt of the information that a survey of indigenous education had been initiated there, much before the papers of the survey were actually sent to London. The London authorities expressed their appreciation of this initiative. They also approved of the collectors having been cautioned against ‘exciting any fears in the people that their freedom of choice in matters of education would be interfered with.’ However, this approval was followed by the observation: ‘But it would be equally wrong to do anything to fortify them (i.e. the people of the Madras Presidency) in the absurd opinion that their own rude institutions of education are so perfect as not to admit of improvement.’ They very expression of such a view in the most diplomatically and cautiously worded of official instructions was a clear signal. Operatively, it implied not only greater ridicule and denunciation of the Indian system; but further, that any residual fiscal and state support still available to the educational institutions was no longer to be tolerated. Not surprisingly, the indigenous system was doomed to stagnate and die.
IMP - Consequences of Killing Indigenous Education System -The neglect and deliberate uprooting of Indian education, the measures which were employed to this end, and its replacement by an alien and rootless system-whose products were so graphically described later by Ananda Coomaraswamy-had several consequences for India.
One, it led to an obliteration of literacy and knowledge of such dimensions amongst the Indian people that recent attempts at universal literacy and education have so far been unable to make an appreciable dent in it. Two, it destroyed the Indian social balance in which, traditionally, persons from all sections of society appear to have been able to receive fairly competent schooling. The pathshalas and madrassahs had enabled them to participate openly and appropriately and with dignity not only in the social and cultural life of their locality but, if they wished, ensured participation at the more extended level. Three it is this destruction along with similar damage in the economic sphere, which led to great deterioration in the status and socio-economic conditions and personal dignity of those who are now known as the scheduled castes; and to only a slightly lesser extent to that of the vast peasant majority encompassed by the term ‘backward castes’. The recent movements embracing these sections to a great extent seem to be aimed at restoring this basic Indian social balance.
Four & most importantly, till today it has kept most educated Indians ignorant of the society they live in, the culture which sustains this society, and their fellow beings; and more tragically, yet, for over a century it has induced a lack of confidence, and loss and bearing amongst the people of Indian in general.
What India possessed in the sphere of education two centuries ago and the factors, which led to its decay and replacement, are indeed a part of history. Even if the former could be brought back to life, in the context of today, or of the immediate future, many aspects of it would no longer be apposite. Yet what exists today has little relevance either. An understanding of what existed and of the processes which created the irrelevance India is burdened with today, in time, could help generate what best suits India’s requirements and the ethos of her people.
Collectors Reports, Tables     
Friends the book has numerous letters & statistical data submitted by individual collectors. For the sake of brevity I am sharing a few. The number in roman alphabets indicates letter number.
V
COLLECTOR OF TINNEVELLY TO BOARD OF RVENUE:
18.10.1822
(TNSA: BRP: Vol.928 Pro.28.10.1822 pp.9936-7 No.4.46.7)
I have the honor of forwarding the Statement of Schools in this District required by your Deputy’s letter of the 25th July last.
The preparation of the account has been delayed by enquiry into the castes of the female scholars who in almost all instances are found to be dancing girls.
Tinnevelly District,
Sharenmadavy,                                                                                                                          J.B. Hudleston
18th October 1822.                                                                                                                      Collector.
VII
PRINCIPAL COLLECTOR COIMBATORE TO BOARD OF REVENUE
23.11.1822
(TNSA: BRP: Vol.932, Pro.2.12.1822, pp.10939-943, No.43)
To,
The President and Members of the Board of Revenue
Gentlemen.
1. I have the honor to forward the information called for in Mr. Clarke’s letter of the 25th July 1882 regarding the schools in the district.
2. The statement No.1 is drawn up after the Form, which accompanied Mr. Clarke’s letter.
The Statement No.2 shows the particular language taught in each school, the number of pupils, the average amount of stipends paid by parents, to the teachers, the average annual charge to pupils for the purchase of cadjans.
The Statements No.3 shows the number of institution in which Theology, Law and Astronomy are taught, the number of pupils educated in them, and the amount of maximum land granted by the Hindu Government for their support, and assumed either by the Mussulamn, or by the British Government.
3. The earliest age at which boys attend school is 5 years, they continue there until they are 13 or 14, Those who study Theology, Law, etc., begin at about 15 and continue to frequent the colleges until they have attained a competent knowledge in the Science, or until they obtain employment.
4. Besides their regular stipends, schoolmasters generally receive presents, from the parents of their pupils, at the Dassarah and other great feasts; a fee is also given when the pupil begins a new book. The annual stipend from one pupil varies from Rs.14 to Rs.3 per annum, according to the circumstances of the parents. The schools hours are from 6 a.m. to 10, and from 1 to 2 p.m. until 8 at night Besides the several festivals they have regular holidays, 4 days in each month on the full moon, the new moon, and a day after each.
5. The education of females is almost entirely confined in this district to the dancing women, who are generally of the Kykeler caste, a class of weavers. There are exceptions to this rule, but the numbers are too insignificant to require notice.
6. There is a school for teaching English in the town of Coimbatore, which is superintended by an English belonging to this Cutcheree.
Coimbatore                                                                                                                  (Signed J. SULLIVAN,
23rd November 1822.                                                                                                        Principal Collector)
X
PRINCIPAL COLLECTOR TANJORE TO BOARD OF REVENUE:
28.6.1823
(TNSA: BRP: Vol.953, Pro.3.7.1823 pp.5345-5347 No.61)
With reference to your Secretary’s letter of the 25th of July last, and its enclosures. I have the honor how to transmit a statement in the prescribed Form, prepared from the Return received from the Tasildars of the number of schools and colleges in this District accompanied by two other statements Nos.1 and 2, more in detail, which will I expect, afford every information, that your Board and government desire to receive on the subject, being necessary for me only to add that it does not appear, any funds granted for these institutions, have been either resumed or diverted from their original purpose.
Tanjore Negapatam,                                                                                                              J. Cotton,
28th June, 1823.                                                                                                                    Principal Collector 
Number of Native Schools/Colleges in Tanjore Collectorate &Number of Scholars.
Number of Schools 884, Colleges 109, Population 3,82,667.
Brahin Scholars
Chettris
Vyseah

Soodra

Other Caste
Muslims
Total Male + Female Students
1. 3,586
369
222
10786
2455
933
18351
2. 20 %.
2 %.
1%
59% 
13%
5 %
100

XVIII
COLLECTOR, TRICHINOPOLY TO BOARD OF REVENUE:
23.8.1823
(TNSA: BRP: Vol.959 Pro.28.8.1823 pp.7456-57 Nos.35-36)
1. Information having at length been obtained on the subject of your letter of the 25th July 1822, I do myself the honor to submit the result. The annexed statement drawn up in correspondence with that which accompanied your letter, will show the number of native schools and colleges in his district, and the number of scholars male as well as female Hindoos of all castes, and Mussulmans, who are educated in them
2. The scholars generally continue in the schools from the age of 7 to 15 and the average yearly expense of education is about 7 pagodas. There are no schools or colleges in this district for the support of which my public funds are appropriated, and in institutions for teaching Astronomy-Theology or any other science.
3. In the talook of Jyalore alone, and no other, there are 7 schools, which were formerly endowed by some Native Government with between 44 and 47 Cawnies of land for the maintenance of the teachers.
Trichinopoly                                                                                                                               G.W. Saunders,
23rd August, 1823.                                                                                                                        Collector.
Number of Native Schools/Colleges in Trichinopoly Collectorate &Number of Scholars. Number of Schools 790, Colleges 9, Population 4,81,292.
Brahin Scholars
Vyseah

Soodra

Other Caste
Muslims
Total Students
 1329
229
7811
347
746
10,462
13%
3%
75% 
3%
6%
100

Students are male + female i.e. 10322 + 140= 10,462.
XXIII
COLLECTOR, GUNTUR TO BOARD OF REVENUE:
9.7.1823
(TNSA: BRP: Vol.954, Pro.14.7.1823, No.49, pp.5904-7)
1. In reply to your Deputy Secretary Mr. Viveash’s letter of the 25th July last, I have the honor to transmit a statement showing the number of schools in which reading and writing are taught together with the number of scholars in them, and which has been prepared according to the form accompanying the above letter.
2. With regard to the information called for by the government in their letter of the 2nd July, 1822, I have to observe that the scholars generally assemble in the morning at 6 o’clock and stay until nine and then go to their houses to take their morning meal and return again to school within 11 o’clock and continue until 2 or 3 o’clock in the evening, and again to their respective houses to eat their rice and return by 4 o’clock and continue until 7 o’clock in the evening. The morning and evening generally are the times for reading and afternoon for writing.
3. The charge to the scholars chiefly depends on the circumstances of the fathers or persons who put them to school and is found to vary from 2 annas to 2 rupees per mensem for each boy and this is the only charge that be shown, as the boys are only sent to the schools in their own villages and live at home.
4. It appear that there are no schools in the Zillah which are endowed by the public and no colleges for teaching Theology, Law, Astronomy, etc., in this district; these sciences are privately taught to some scholars or disciples generally by the Bramins learned in them, without payment of any fee or reward, and that the Bramins who teach are generally maintained by means of Mauneom land which have been granted to their ancestors by the ancient Zemindars of this Zillah, and by the former governments on different accounts, but there appears no instance in which the Native Government have granted allowances in money and land merely for the maintenance of the teachers for giving instruction in the above science. By the information which has been got together on this subject, it appears that there are 171 places where Theology, Law and Astronomy, etc., are taught privately, and the number of disciples in them is 939. The readers of these sciences cannot generally get teachers in their respective village and are therefore obliged to go others. In which cases if the reader belongs to a family that can afford to support him gets what is required for his expenses from his home and which is estimated at 3 rupees per month, but which is only sufficient to supply him with his victuals; and if on the other hand his family is in too indigent circumstances to make such allowance, the student procures his daily subsistence from the houses in the village, where taught, which willingly furnish such by turns.
5. Should people be desirous of studying deeper in Theology, etc., than is taught in these parts, they travel to Benares. Navadweepum, etc., where they remain for years to take instructions under the learned Pundits of those places.
Guntoor Zillah,                                                                                                                             J.C. Whish,
Bauputtah, 9th July, 1823.                                                                                                              Collector.
Number of Native Schools/Colleges in Guntur Collectorate &Number of Scholars. Number of Schools 574 Colleges 0, Population 4,54,754
Brahin Scholars
Vyseah

Soodra

Other Caste
Muslims
Total Scholars
 3094
1578
1960
832
260
7,724
40%
20%
25% 
11%
4%
100

Students are male + female i.e. 7,622 + 102= 7,724
Madras Presidency Table     
This table is an attachment to a report by J Dent, Secretary, Fort St George, 21/2/1825.
Number of Native Schools/Colleges in Madras Presidency &Number of Scholars. Number of Schools 574 Colleges 0, Population 4,54,754, includes male & female.
Name of Collectorate
No of Schools

Bramin

Vysea

Soodra

Other Caste
Muslims
Total Scholars 
1. Ganjam.
255
808
243
1003
896
27
2977
2. Vizag.
914
4547
983
2072
2016
97
9715
3.Rajamundry
570
2356
653
472
579
52
4112
4.Masulipatnam
533
1891
1108
1507
499
277
5282
5.Guntoor
574
3094
1578
1960
832
260
7724
6.
Nellore
804
2466
1641
2462
432
620
7621
7.
Bellary.
533
1187
982
3024
1205
243
6641
8. Cuddapah.
494
1416
1713
1843
686
342
6000
9.Chingleput.
559
1259
424
4888
486
186
7243
10.ND.Arcot.
699
1117
630
4888
546
563
7744
11.S.D.Arcot.
875
997
370
8032
872
252
10523
12.
Salem.
388
783
324
1674
1410
459
4650
13.Tanjore
993
3955
222
10786
2485
933
18381
14.Trichinopoly
799
1329
229
7811
347
746
10462
15. Madura.
844
1186
1119
7312
3017
1147
13781
16.Tinnelvelly.
607
2016
0
2889
3674
798
9377
17.
Coimbatore.
936
1642
289
6461
226
312
8930
18.Canara.
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
19.Malabar.
760
2310
97
4404
3099
4318 
14228
20.Seringapatnam.
41
48
23
312
158
86
627
21.
Madras.
305
359
798
3619
317
143
5236
22. Charity.
17
52
48
172
181
10
463
23.Tutitons Home
0
7684
6195
7809
3585
1690
26963

Total

12500
42502 
19669
85400 
27548
13561
188680 

% of total


23 
10
45 
15
7
100 

Students are male + female i.e. male 184100 balance is female.
Analysis –
• Sudras made up 45% of the scholars as compared to Brahmins 23%, today is probably the reverse.
• High number of Muslim scholars in Malabar 4318.
• Only 7 % of the total number of scholars were Muslims. Meaning then & today it the Muslims continue to pay less attention to education. Be it England or India does not matter.
• 12500 schools & colleges. The British first killed these institutions, then brought in Anglicized education into India through the missionaries.

Young India Articles
Copy of article from ‘Young India’8TH December 1920
1. The Decline of Mass Education in India  (By Daulat Ram Gupta, M.A.)
It is generally believed that from the time the British Government have taken in their hands the duty of educating the people of India, in accordance with the Parliamentary dispatch of 1854, the country has made remarkable progress in education, in so far as the number of schools, the number of scholars, and the standard of education are concerned. It will be my business to prove, that we have made no such progress in these respects-a fact which will be starting to some and a revelation to others-and in so far as our mass education is concerned, we have certainly made a downward move since India has passed to the British Crown.
The advent of British Rule found in India systems, of education of great antiquity and value existing among both Hindus and Mussalmans, in each case closely bound up with their religious institutions. There was not a mosque, a temple, a Dharamsala, that had not a school attached to it. To give and receive instruction was regarded as a religious duty. Schools of learning were formed in centers containing a considerable high caste population, where Pandits gave instruction in Sanskrit, grammar, logic, philosophy and law.
For the lower classes, village schools were scattered over the country in which a good rudimentary education was given to the children of petty traders, cultivators and landlords. The very fact that every family of the DWIJA (twice-born) and every guild of the mixed castes, and very village of any importance, had its own priest, and that it was enjoined upon the priest to teach as well as to minister to religion, leads one to the belief, on strong prima facie grounds, that education was very widely diffused among the people.
The higher education of the Mussalmans was in the hands of men of learning. Schools were attached to mosques and shrines and supported by the state grant in cash or land, or by private liberality. The course of study in a Muslim Madrassa included grammar, rhetoric, logic, literature, jurisprudence, and science.
Thus, in Madras, in an inquiry conducted by Sri Thomas Munro in 1826, it is stated that in 1826 there were 11,758 indigenous schools and 740 colleges giving instruction to 1,57,664 boys, and 4,023 girls. (Vide Education Commission Report by the Madras Provincial Committee 1884). It is therefore estimated, that considering the population in that period (123,50,941) elementary indigenous education was imparted to about one fourth of the boys of school-going age. It was also estimated that there was at least one school to every 1,000 of the population. But as only a few females were taught in schools, we may reckon one school to every 500 of the population.
Mr. Munro, (as he then was) further supplements this estimate of the spread of education with the following observation: -
I am, however, inclined to estimate the portion of the male population, who receive school education, to one-third than one-fourth of the whole, because we have no return of the numbers taught at home.
In 1826, such was the state of purely indigenous education in a province which had been under British influence for over a century and was, therefore, fast disintegrating old institutions and adopting new ones.
In Bengal, Mr. W. Adam, conduced a similar inquiry and found that in 1835 ‘a network of primitive Vernacular schools existed throughout Bengal’, and he estimated their number to be about one lakh. The Sadler Commission has pointed out that no attempt was made to develop these schools.’ Government preferred to devote its energies to secondary and higher schools, on the theory that, if Western education were introduced among the upper classes, it would filter down by a natural process to the lower classes, Practically all the public funds available for education were expended on schools and colleges founded and controlled by Government, and nothing was spent upon indigenous schools, and as rent-free lands attached to these schools were resumed, the schools were left without any financial aid and naturally collapsed.
The purpose of all this was political. Sir Sankaran Nair in his masterly Minute of Dissent writes:-
Efforts were made by the government to confine higher education and secondary education, leading to higher education, to boys in affluent circumstances… Rules were made calculated to restrict the diffusion of education generally and among the poorer boys in particular. Conditions for “recognition” for grants-stiff and various-were laid down and enforced, and the non-fulfillment of any one of these conditions was liable to be followed by serious consequences. Fees were raised to a degree, which, considering the circumstances of the classes that resort to schools, were abnormal. When it was objected that minimum fee would be a great hardship to poor students the answer was such students had no business to receive that kind of education. Managers of private schools, who remitted fees in whole or in part, were penalized by reduced grants-in-aid.
Thus, by this policy, education was only confined to the well-to-do classes.
They it was believed would give no trouble to the Government.’ Sri Sankaran Nair, therefore, concludes that,
It is the universal belief, and there is little doubt that facts unfortunately tend to prove it, that primary English Education for the masses, and higher education for the higher classes are discouraged for political reasons. Higher, professional, industrial and technical education is discouraged to favor English industries and recruitment in English of English officials.
In the Punjab the state of indigenous education was much better because of the special efforts made by Maharaja Ranjit Singh to promote learning. Dr. Leitner, who was the Principal of the Oriental College and Government College, Lahore, and who also, officiated for some time as Director of Public Instruction. Punjab, conducted a very thorough going inquiry into the state of indigenous education in the Punjab, and in his book on the ‘History of Indigenous Education’ in the Punjab, he writes: -
I am about to relate-I hope without extenuation or malice-the history of the contact of a form of European, with one of the Asiatic, civilization; how in spite of the best intentions, the most public-spirited officers, and a generous government that had the benefit of the traditions of other provinces, the true education of the Punjab was crippled, checked and is nearly destroyed; how opportunities for its healthy revival and development were either neglected or perverted; and how, far beyond the blame attaching to individuals, our system stands convicted of worse then official failure.
He therefore writes: -
I fear that my account of the decline of indigenous education in the Punjab may offend some prejudices and oppose some interests. I have to appeal to rules to put themselves in the position of the ruled, if they wish to understand them…. and both the writer of these pages and the reader must endeavor to divest themselves of every preconception. Indeed, the man has so often described the struggle with the lion, that it would be well to sketch a picture with the lion might have drawn had he been a painter.
Referring to the educational glory of the Punjab before annexation he writes:
Respect for learning has always been the redeeming feature of the East. To this the Punjab formed no exception. Torn by invasion and war, it ever preserved and added to educational endowments. The most unscrupulous chief, the avaricious moneylender, and even the free-booter, vied with the small landowner in making peace with his conscience by founding schools and rewarding the learned. There was not a mosque, a temple, a Dharamsala that had not a school attached to it, to which the youth flocked chiefly for religious education. There were few wealthy men who did not entertain a Maulvi, Pandit, or Guru to teach their sons, and along with them the sons of friends and dependents. There were also thousands of secular schools, frequented alike by Mahomedans, Hindus and Sikhs, in which Persian or Hindi was taught. There were hundreds of learned men who gratuitously taught their co-religionists, and sometimes all comers, for the sake of God, “Lillah”. There was not a single village who did not take a pride in devoting a portion of his produce to a respected teacher.
In respectable Mahomedan families husbands taught their wives, and they their children; nor did the Sikhs prove in that respect to be unworthy of the appellation of “Learners and disciples”. In short the lowest computation gives us 3,30,000 pupils in the schools of the various denominations who were acquainted with reading, writing and some method of computation, whilst thousands of them belonged to Arabic and Sanskrit Colleges, in which oriental literature and system of oriental law, logic, philosophy and medicine were taught to the highest standards. Tens of thousand also acquired a proficiency in Persian which is now rarely reached in government and aided schools and colleges. Through all schools there breathed a spirit of devotion to education for its own sake, and for its influence on the character and on religious culture; whilst even the sons of Banias who merely learnt what they absolutely required in order to gain a livelihood, looked with respect, amounting to adoration, on their humble Pandhas, who taught them the elements of two ‘Rs’.
Dr. Leitner further describe the state of feeling with respect to education in the Punjab. He writes:
The Punjab is classic ground. Not merely the celebrated country between Sutlej and the Jumna, but also the whole province teems with noble recollections. The history of its culture will tell us of a simple worship…..of an ardent republicanism allied to the most chivalrous devotion to chiefs, of capacity for self-Government not equaled else where, and above all, of the universal respect for learning and of the general spread of education. The priest was a professor and poet, and education was a religious, social and professional duty.
It is, therefore, our belief, founded on authentic historical data, that before annexation, every Punjab village had a school of its own.
In every Indian village which has retained anything of its form…the rudiments of knowledge are sought to be imparted; there is not a child, except those of the outcastes (who form no part of the community), who is not able to read, to write, to cipher; in the last branch of learning, they are confessedly most proficient.’ (Vide BRITISH INDIA by Ludlow).
Dr. Leitner estimated that in 1854-55 there were at least 30,000 schools, and if we count at least 13 pupils per school, the total number of pupils will amount to 4 lakhs. Dr Leitner writes:
The village school would contain 3,00,000 pupils but there are reasons for estimating larger number.’
Further, in backward district like that of Hushiarpur, the Settlement Report of 1852, shows a school to every 1,965 male inhabitants (adults and non-adults), which may be contrasted with the present proportion of one government or aided school to every 9,028 or one school to 2,818.7 inhabitants including the present number of ascertained indigenous schools throughout the province, a significant contrast to the proportion of one school to every 1,783 inhabitants in the most backward division of the Punjab in 1849 when brought under British Rule after a period of confusion following on war and annexation.
Such was the state of affairs in 1882, but the contrast will become more starting if we look at the figures already reproduced in “Young India”.
A mere glance at that statement will show how the indigenous education has declined, and how stagnant the state of education has remained from 1882 to 1918-19. In a period of 37 years the government has done nothing whatsoever for mass education. In a period less than this, England was able to educate the whole of its populations; in a period considerably less than this, America could give education to a population without any records of civilization or intellectual stamina; and in a period equal to this, Japan was able to work out its destiny. But such is the way of doing things in India that during all this time nothing was done except to shift schools from one place to an other, to shift the expenses of education from one source to an other, to shift the responsibility from man to man; in fact to make shifts as best as could be done.
Such in brief is the history of the decline of indigenous education, and as to how it was crushed in the Punjab will from the subject matter of the next article.
2. How Indigenous Education was Crushed in the Punjab (1849-1886)
         Published 29/12/1920
The Punjab was the last of all the Provinces of India to come under the direct influence of the English. The Honorable the East India Company had during a couple of centuries, extended their sphere of influence from the Cape to the Jamuna; but its administrators never thought it worth the trouble to go beyond the Moghul Court. The Moghul Court itself was jealous of any encroachments upon its northern province-the gateway to Kabul-which they still looked upon as their ancestral home.
When the descendants of Aurangzeb began to bungle things in this province, the invaders from the North and the people from within threw in a state of anarchy and misrule. Under such circumstances the hardy Sikh began to realize his own importance and individuality. Ever afterwards till 1849, the Sikhs kept the banks of Beas free from all diplomatic or martial overtures. They preferred their own incapacity to govern to an established order of things where their liberty would be restrained and their religion interfered with. The Sikh like the Hindu is essentially devout, and his devotion always lands him on the side of conservatism; of respect for the past, its institutions and traditions.
So that, when the reins of government and authority passed into the hands of the Sikhs, both from lack of initiative and requirements of diplomacy, they left untouched all the old village institutions. Whereas, British administrators in other provinces were changing and modifying ancient ways and manners to suit their own conceptions, the Sikh Sirdar was content to let things have their own way, so long as he got the revenue that he wanted. The result of it all was that a network of village schools which traditions of a thousand years past had spread all over India, was in its full strength here. If any change was made at all, it was to add the Granthi or Bhai, to the Maulvi and the Pandit. Instead of there being two traditional teachers of village youth, now there became three.
The village education was an essential part of the village administration and the provision for it was made in the village expenses. The schoolmaster’s field’, the ‘watchman’s field’ never disappear from the village books. There was in every village in the Punjab, a school of some sort, in which elementary education, having a direct bearing on the secular needs of the pupil, was imparted either free of cost, or at a nominal rate of monthly fee. In addition to these schools, there were spread all over the province ‘colleges of various grades and denominations in which the ancient ideals of the academies were kept alive and potent. There were centers of advanced studies of metaphysics, astronomy, mathematics, grammar, philosophy and other sciences.
That much good was done to all sections of the community by these indigenous schools and colleges is beyond doubt a fact recognized even by the bitter antagonists of the indigenous system. From the advanced ‘colleges’, in which classical education (Arabic and Sanskrit) was imparted to students of mature age and thought, to the elementary Mahajani, Sharafi, and Lande Schools, there was a very large variety of quasi-classical vernacular and technical schools. The teachers always kept in view the requirements of individual students and the profession they were qualifying for.
There was no class instruction, as in our schools reducing all intellects to the same level and retarding the industrious for the sake of the dullard. But recitations in Sanskrit and the system of repeating lessons in chorus on the dispersion of the school encouraged such emulation as may be necessary, whilst the separate instruction of the pupil and his devotion to his work during the time that he was not reading with his tutor stimulated those habits of reflection and of private study, in which the students of present day schools are sadly deficient. Then again when the student grew older, he traveled to learn philosophy under one tutor and law under another much in the same way as students of German Universities visit various seats of learning in order to hear, say, international law at Heidelberg, the Pandects at Berlin.
It would not be without interest to point out that from the humblest beginnings in education up to the highest courses in Hindu metaphysics and science great wisdom was displayed. Traces of the ‘Kindergarten system’ are still found. The simplest methods for arresting and keeping attention were resorted to and the moral and mental capacities of children, according to their spheres of life, were everywhere carefully studied and cultivated. As for the mode of instruction, it also bore in every one of its features the emphatically practical as well as ideal aim of the Hindu legislator.
That the above statement is not an unsupported assertion; I will quote a paragraph from the first educational dispatch of the Court of Directors which was issued on the 3rd June 1814.
The Directors point out that ‘the indigenous village schools are a part of the village system and that they have formed a model to schools in England.’ Again they point out ‘this venerable and benevolent institution of the Hindus is represented to have withstood the shock of revolutions, and to its operation is ascribed the general intelligence of the native.’
In 1848 the Government of the Punjab passed into the hands of the East India Company. The first Board of Administration in the Punjab recognized the full value of the rich educational legacy, which they inherited from the decaying and disintegrating Sikh constitution. Recognizing the widespread character of the indigenous education, and the necessity of keeping up old educational traditions alive, Sir John and Sri Henry Lawrence defined their policy in matters of education in the following words: -
We intend to set up one school. If not in every village, at least in every circle of villages, so that at least should be something throughout the land in which the children do attend some rudimentary school.’
How far policy was actually carried out will be explained in another article.
     Letter by Gandhi associate Shri K T Shah to Sir Phillip, 20/2/1932
Dear Sir Philip,
I have been informed by Mahatma Gandhi that during his stay in London recently, and while speaking at some public meeting about the state of education in British India before the advent of the British in this country, he remarked that the extent of literacy was greater in those days than at the present time. He adds that you had questioned the accuracy of that statement, and called upon Mr. Gandhi to furnish proof in support of the same. Mahatmaji has, I understand, referred you to some writings in the Young India; but you do not consider that sufficient proof; and so has asked me if I could find any more acceptable substantiation for that observation. I am, therefore, addressing you this letter to try and offer that substantiation, as far as the records available could permit of my doing so. If you care to acknowledge this letter to Mahatmaji, would you at the same time send me a copy of the same?
 To begin with I need hardly point out to you that, at the time under reference, no country in the world had anything like definite, authoritative, statistical information of the type one would now recognize as proper proof in such discussions. In India particularly, thanks to the distracted state of the country, it was impossible to provide any such material on a nation-wide basis, even supposing it had been customary to compile such information from time to time. The elaborate ‘directory’, if I may so describe it, of the territories under his rule, compiled by the indefatigable Minister of the great Akbar known as the Ayeen-I-Akbari, was prepared so long before the advent of the British that I feel a hesitation even in referring to it, apart from the further fact that authoritative work suffers from other blemishes in the eyes of a too critical reader. All, therefore, that one can expect by way of proof in such matters, and at such a time, can only be in the form of impressions of people in a position to form ideas a little better and more scientific than those of less fortunately situated, or less well endowed, observers.
Such official investigations as were ordered in connection with the periodical parliamentary enquires before the renewal of the Company’s Charter in 1793, 1813, 1833, and 1853 also afford some data, though these have their own defect as is pointed out below. Other official enquiries, reports, or dicta of qualified officers, were originally for a purpose different from the one under reference here; and therefore, discussion or observation on educational matters therein must needs be taken as incidental rather than as the immediate subject of their concern, and consequently open such defects as all such incidental observation suffers from.
For the immediate purpose of this letter, will you permit me to begin by referring you to the reports of certain provincial enquiries conducted about the time when the British rule first began in those provinces? Let me, however, add a remark as applied to the country, at large, on the authority of Max Mueller, and another on the authority of the historian Ludlow-both mentioned in Keir Hardie’s work on India. “Max Mueller, on the strength of official documents and missionary reports, concerning education in Bengal prior to the British occupation, asserts that there were then 80,000 schools in Bengal, or one for every 400 of the population. Ludlow, in his History of British India, says that “in every village, which has retained its old form, I am assured that the children generally are able to read, write and cipher; but where we have swept away the village system, there the village school has also disappeared.” (Cp. B.D. Basu, Education in India under the E.I. Co., p18).
In Bombay, which came under British rule after the fall of the Peshwas in 1818, a Report of the Bombay Education Society for 1819 observes:- “There is probably as great a proportion of persons in India who can read, write, and keep simple accounts, as are to be found in European countries. The same Report for the following year notes:- ‘Schools are frequent among the natives, and abound everywhere.’ In April, 1821, Mr. Prendergast, member of the Executive Council of the then Government of Bombay, notes in a Minute on an application for 2 English schools in Thana or Panwell Talukas:- ‘I need hardly mention what every member of the Board knows as well as I do that there is hardly a village, great or small, throughout our territories, in which there is not at least one school and in larger villages more; many in every town and in large cities in every division where young natives are taught reading, writing and arithmetic, upon a system so economical, from a handful or two of grain, to perhaps a rupee per month to the schoolmaster, according to the ability of the parents, and at the same time so simple and effectual, that there is hardly a cultivator or petty dealer who is not competent to keep his own accounts with a degree of accuracy, in my opinion, beyond what we meet with among the lower orders in our own country; whilst the more splendid dealers and bankers keep their books with a degree of ease, conciseness, and clearness I rather think fully equal to those of any British merchants.’ (Cp. Commons Report, 1832 p.468).
I shall come to Madras in a moment, and revert to statistical proof such as I can find,-thereafter. Let me here refer you to the classic case of Dr. Leitner’s Report on the system of Indigenous Education in the Punjab, based on an investigation carried out by the learned Doctor, -principal of a Government College, because of a surprising difference between his figures of the people educated in indigenous schools, and those supplied by the Director of Public Instruction for the province, to the Indian Education Committee of 1882. Dr. Leitner remarks, in his introduction to his Report, -‘In short the lowest computation gives us 330,000 pupils (against little more than 190,000 at present) in the schools of the various denominations, who were acquainted with reading, writing and some method of computation; whilst thousands of them belonged to Arabic and Sanskrit colleges, in which oriental literature and systems of Oriental Law, Logic, Philosophy and Medicine, were taught to the highest standards,’ I would particularly commend to your attention this classic document of 650 odd pages (folio), the more so as Dr Sir Wm. Hunter, President of the Indian Education Committee, made a special Minute to the Report of that Committee (pp.621-2) in which he found that Dr. Leitner’s estimate of 120,000 pupils in the Punjab was actually an underestimate by some 15,000 while the official figure supplied by the D.P.I. of the province was below the actual figure by some 80,000 pupils.
Incidentally, this will suffice to show how imperfect, Inaccurate, undependable, was the official statistical information for these early days, when the people viewed with easily intelligible suspicion enquires of this nature, and so passively refused to afford the correct information wherever and whenever they could help it. Without minimizing in the least degree the value of statistical evidence, I cannot but add that such evidence is worse than useless, when we recall the conditions under which it was complied, as also the temperament and training of the officials who helped in compiling the same in those primitive times of British rule in India.
Let me now speak of Madras, that earliest settlement of British rule in India, and even now said to be the best-educated province in the Empire. Sir T. Munro in a Minute dated 10.3.1826 (Commons Report, 1832, p.506) observes that, taking the male part of the population only, and taking children of between 5-10 years of age only, as school going population, (assumed to be one-ninth of that total population) there were 713,000 male pupils that would be at school. The actual number of pupils in recognized schools was found by him to be 184,110, which works out to be a little over a fourth of the total school-going population. Sir Thomas, however, was of the opinion that the actual proportion was nearer one-third than one-fourth, owing to a large number of children receiving instruction privately, and so not included in the above calculation.
In Bengal, (Cp. Adam’s Report, 1838) the total number of children between 5-14 years of age is taken at 87,629. of these, 6,786 were returned as receiving instruction in the recognized schools, or 7.7%. This includes men and women, girls as well as boys, while in Madras only the male population was considered. On that basis, this figure could be easily raised to at least 15% of the total. There is reason to prefer this basis for calculation, since, under the conditions and ideas of the time, women could not go for education to schools publicly recognized; and so a proper index for judging of the real state of literacy is rather the male population than the total. Again, the percentage of population receiving instruction, compared to the total of school-going age, would be still higher, if we would bear in mind the fact that the so called untouchables formed parts of the total, but could not, necessarily, be included in the people receiving instruction as these were not admitted into public institutions.
In the Bombay Presidency, the total population was returned in 1829 at 4,681,735. The total number of scholars in schools was 35,153. If we take, with Sir T. Munro, one-ninth of the population to be of school-going age, the total figure of school-going age would be 520,190. This gives a percentage of 7 to the total of school-going age; while if we confine ourselves only to males, the percentage of scholars to the total population (male) of school-going age would be 14. This proportion is more than borne out by the later Report of 1841, relating to only 9 selected districts in the Presidency.
The following comparative position, between the state of things now and a hundred years ago, would be instructive, if not conclusive.
% of population of school-going age receiving primary education
                    Presidency                               1921 (males only)                  1821 (approximate)
Madras
42.5
33
Bombay
45.1
14 (highest 28 in some parts)
Bengal
37.2
16 (highest 32 in some parts)


I have already pointed out that these statistical data for the earlier period are undependable, because (1) the figures for privately educated children are not available; (2) the people were averse to disclosing what they thought to be unwarrantable bits of information; (3) the compilers of this information were not of requisite efficiency or intelligence; (4) certain large sections of the population were necessarily excluded, and had to be excluded from these calculations, if they were to be at all reliable; and so the mere percentages, uncorrected, are of no use. The closer enquiry of this type conducted by Leitner is far more reliable, and so also the obiter dicta of people in the position to have clear impressions. These people, also, generally obtained their impressions of the state of education in the area under their charge, only incidentally, while collecting information for Land Revenue Settlement of their districts; and the primary object was not to discover the real state of education in the country, but something quite different. Hence even those impressions must be held to give rather an underestimate than otherwise of the true state of affairs in this behalf, in view of the considerations mentioned already.
Friends please thank Ajay for typing in nearly 90% of the above matter. Hope you found the excerpts as enlightening as I did. Three cheers to Dharampalji for a super book. May Ishwar bless with happiness in this and subsequent births.Young India Articles

Copy of article from ‘Young India’8TH December 1920
1. The Decline of Mass Education in India  (By Daulat Ram Gupta, M.A.)
It is generally believed that from the time the British Government have taken in their hands the duty of educating the people of India, in accordance with the Parliamentary dispatch of 1854, the country has made remarkable progress in education, in so far as the number of schools, the number of scholars, and the standard of education are concerned. It will be my business to prove, that we have made no such progress in these respects-a fact which will be starting to some and a revelation to others-and in so far as our mass education is concerned, we have certainly made a downward move since India has passed to the British Crown.
The advent of British Rule found in India systems, of education of great antiquity and value existing among both Hindus and Mussalmans, in each case closely bound up with their religious institutions. There was not a mosque, a temple, a Dharamsala, that had not a school attached to it. To give and receive instruction was regarded as a religious duty. Schools of learning were formed in centers containing a considerable high caste population, where Pandits gave instruction in Sanskrit, grammar, logic, philosophy and law.
For the lower classes, village schools were scattered over the country in which a good rudimentary education was given to the children of petty traders, cultivators and landlords. The very fact that every family of the DWIJA (twice-born) and every guild of the mixed castes, and very village of any importance, had its own priest, and that it was enjoined upon the priest to teach as well as to minister to religion, leads one to the belief, on strong prima facie grounds, that education was very widely diffused among the people.
The higher education of the Mussalmans was in the hands of men of learning. Schools were attached to mosques and shrines and supported by the state grant in cash or land, or by private liberality. The course of study in a Muslim Madrassa included grammar, rhetoric, logic, literature, jurisprudence, and science.
Thus, in Madras, in an inquiry conducted by Sri Thomas Munro in 1826, it is stated that in 1826 there were 11,758 indigenous schools and 740 colleges giving instruction to 1,57,664 boys, and 4,023 girls. (Vide Education Commission Report by the Madras Provincial Committee 1884). It is therefore estimated, that considering the population in that period (123,50,941) elementary indigenous education was imparted to about one fourth of the boys of school-going age. It was also estimated that there was at least one school to every 1,000 of the population. But as only a few females were taught in schools, we may reckon one school to every 500 of the population.
Mr. Munro, (as he then was) further supplements this estimate of the spread of education with the following observation: -
I am, however, inclined to estimate the portion of the male population, who receive school education, to one-third than one-fourth of the whole, because we have no return of the numbers taught at home.
In 1826, such was the state of purely indigenous education in a province which had been under British influence for over a century and was, therefore, fast disintegrating old institutions and adopting new ones.
In Bengal, Mr. W. Adam, conduced a similar inquiry and found that in 1835 ‘a network of primitive Vernacular schools existed throughout Bengal’, and he estimated their number to be about one lakh. The Sadler Commission has pointed out that no attempt was made to develop these schools.’ Government preferred to devote its energies to secondary and higher schools, on the theory that, if Western education were introduced among the upper classes, it would filter down by a natural process to the lower classes, Practically all the public funds available for education were expended on schools and colleges founded and controlled by Government, and nothing was spent upon indigenous schools, and as rent-free lands attached to these schools were resumed, the schools were left without any financial aid and naturally collapsed.
The purpose of all this was political. Sir Sankaran Nair in his masterly Minute of Dissent writes:-
Efforts were made by the government to confine higher education and secondary education, leading to higher education, to boys in affluent circumstances… Rules were made calculated to restrict the diffusion of education generally and among the poorer boys in particular. Conditions for “recognition” for grants-stiff and various-were laid down and enforced, and the non-fulfillment of any one of these conditions was liable to be followed by serious consequences. Fees were raised to a degree, which, considering the circumstances of the classes that resort to schools, were abnormal. When it was objected that minimum fee would be a great hardship to poor students the answer was such students had no business to receive that kind of education. Managers of private schools, who remitted fees in whole or in part, were penalized by reduced grants-in-aid.
Thus, by this policy, education was only confined to the well-to-do classes.
They it was believed would give no trouble to the Government.’ Sri Sankaran Nair, therefore, concludes that,
It is the universal belief, and there is little doubt that facts unfortunately tend to prove it, that primary English Education for the masses, and higher education for the higher classes are discouraged for political reasons. Higher, professional, industrial and technical education is discouraged to favor English industries and recruitment in English of English officials.
In the Punjab the state of indigenous education was much better because of the special efforts made by Maharaja Ranjit Singh to promote learning. Dr. Leitner, who was the Principal of the Oriental College and Government College, Lahore, and who also, officiated for some time as Director of Public Instruction. Punjab, conducted a very thorough going inquiry into the state of indigenous education in the Punjab, and in his book on the ‘History of Indigenous Education’ in the Punjab, he writes: -
I am about to relate-I hope without extenuation or malice-the history of the contact of a form of European, with one of the Asiatic, civilization; how in spite of the best intentions, the most public-spirited officers, and a generous government that had the benefit of the traditions of other provinces, the true education of the Punjab was crippled, checked and is nearly destroyed; how opportunities for its healthy revival and development were either neglected or perverted; and how, far beyond the blame attaching to individuals, our system stands convicted of worse then official failure.
He therefore writes: -
I fear that my account of the decline of indigenous education in the Punjab may offend some prejudices and oppose some interests. I have to appeal to rules to put themselves in the position of the ruled, if they wish to understand them…. and both the writer of these pages and the reader must endeavor to divest themselves of every preconception. Indeed, the man has so often described the struggle with the lion, that it would be well to sketch a picture with the lion might have drawn had he been a painter.
Referring to the educational glory of the Punjab before annexation he writes:
Respect for learning has always been the redeeming feature of the East. To this the Punjab formed no exception. Torn by invasion and war, it ever preserved and added to educational endowments. The most unscrupulous chief, the avaricious moneylender, and even the free-booter, vied with the small landowner in making peace with his conscience by founding schools and rewarding the learned. There was not a mosque, a temple, a Dharamsala that had not a school attached to it, to which the youth flocked chiefly for religious education. There were few wealthy men who did not entertain a Maulvi, Pandit, or Guru to teach their sons, and along with them the sons of friends and dependents. There were also thousands of secular schools, frequented alike by Mahomedans, Hindus and Sikhs, in which Persian or Hindi was taught. There were hundreds of learned men who gratuitously taught their co-religionists, and sometimes all comers, for the sake of God, “Lillah”. There was not a single village who did not take a pride in devoting a portion of his produce to a respected teacher.
In respectable Mahomedan families husbands taught their wives, and they their children; nor did the Sikhs prove in that respect to be unworthy of the appellation of “Learners and disciples”. In short the lowest computation gives us 3,30,000 pupils in the schools of the various denominations who were acquainted with reading, writing and some method of computation, whilst thousands of them belonged to Arabic and Sanskrit Colleges, in which oriental literature and system of oriental law, logic, philosophy and medicine were taught to the highest standards. Tens of thousand also acquired a proficiency in Persian which is now rarely reached in government and aided schools and colleges. Through all schools there breathed a spirit of devotion to education for its own sake, and for its influence on the character and on religious culture; whilst even the sons of Banias who merely learnt what they absolutely required in order to gain a livelihood, looked with respect, amounting to adoration, on their humble Pandhas, who taught them the elements of two ‘Rs’.
Dr. Leitner further describe the state of feeling with respect to education in the Punjab. He writes:
The Punjab is classic ground. Not merely the celebrated country between Sutlej and the Jumna, but also the whole province teems with noble recollections. The history of its culture will tell us of a simple worship…..of an ardent republicanism allied to the most chivalrous devotion to chiefs, of capacity for self-Government not equaled else where, and above all, of the universal respect for learning and of the general spread of education. The priest was a professor and poet, and education was a religious, social and professional duty.
It is, therefore, our belief, founded on authentic historical data, that before annexation, every Punjab village had a school of its own.
In every Indian village which has retained anything of its form…the rudiments of knowledge are sought to be imparted; there is not a child, except those of the outcastes (who form no part of the community), who is not able to read, to write, to cipher; in the last branch of learning, they are confessedly most proficient.’ (Vide BRITISH INDIA by Ludlow).
Dr. Leitner estimated that in 1854-55 there were at least 30,000 schools, and if we count at least 13 pupils per school, the total number of pupils will amount to 4 lakhs. Dr Leitner writes:
The village school would contain 3,00,000 pupils but there are reasons for estimating larger number.’
Further, in backward district like that of Hushiarpur, the Settlement Report of 1852, shows a school to every 1,965 male inhabitants (adults and non-adults), which may be contrasted with the present proportion of one government or aided school to every 9,028 or one school to 2,818.7 inhabitants including the present number of ascertained indigenous schools throughout the province, a significant contrast to the proportion of one school to every 1,783 inhabitants in the most backward division of the Punjab in 1849 when brought under British Rule after a period of confusion following on war and annexation.
Such was the state of affairs in 1882, but the contrast will become more starting if we look at the figures already reproduced in “Young India”.
A mere glance at that statement will show how the indigenous education has declined, and how stagnant the state of education has remained from 1882 to 1918-19. In a period of 37 years the government has done nothing whatsoever for mass education. In a period less than this, England was able to educate the whole of its populations; in a period considerably less than this, America could give education to a population without any records of civilization or intellectual stamina; and in a period equal to this, Japan was able to work out its destiny. But such is the way of doing things in India that during all this time nothing was done except to shift schools from one place to an other, to shift the expenses of education from one source to an other, to shift the responsibility from man to man; in fact to make shifts as best as could be done.
Such in brief is the history of the decline of indigenous education, and as to how it was crushed in the Punjab will from the subject matter of the next article.
2. How Indigenous Education was Crushed in the Punjab (1849-1886)
         Published 29/12/1920
The Punjab was the last of all the Provinces of India to come under the direct influence of the English. The Honorable the East India Company had during a couple of centuries, extended their sphere of influence from the Cape to the Jamuna; but its administrators never thought it worth the trouble to go beyond the Moghul Court. The Moghul Court itself was jealous of any encroachments upon its northern province-the gateway to Kabul-which they still looked upon as their ancestral home.
When the descendants of Aurangzeb began to bungle things in this province, the invaders from the North and the people from within threw in a state of anarchy and misrule. Under such circumstances the hardy Sikh began to realize his own importance and individuality. Ever afterwards till 1849, the Sikhs kept the banks of Beas free from all diplomatic or martial overtures. They preferred their own incapacity to govern to an established order of things where their liberty would be restrained and their religion interfered with. The Sikh like the Hindu is essentially devout, and his devotion always lands him on the side of conservatism; of respect for the past, its institutions and traditions.
So that, when the reins of government and authority passed into the hands of the Sikhs, both from lack of initiative and requirements of diplomacy, they left untouched all the old village institutions. Whereas, British administrators in other provinces were changing and modifying ancient ways and manners to suit their own conceptions, the Sikh Sirdar was content to let things have their own way, so long as he got the revenue that he wanted. The result of it all was that a network of village schools which traditions of a thousand years past had spread all over India, was in its full strength here. If any change was made at all, it was to add the Granthi or Bhai, to the Maulvi and the Pandit. Instead of there being two traditional teachers of village youth, now there became three.
The village education was an essential part of the village administration and the provision for it was made in the village expenses. The schoolmaster’s field’, the ‘watchman’s field’ never disappear from the village books. There was in every village in the Punjab, a school of some sort, in which elementary education, having a direct bearing on the secular needs of the pupil, was imparted either free of cost, or at a nominal rate of monthly fee. In addition to these schools, there were spread all over the province ‘colleges of various grades and denominations in which the ancient ideals of the academies were kept alive and potent. There were centers of advanced studies of metaphysics, astronomy, mathematics, grammar, philosophy and other sciences.
That much good was done to all sections of the community by these indigenous schools and colleges is beyond doubt a fact recognized even by the bitter antagonists of the indigenous system. From the advanced ‘colleges’, in which classical education (Arabic and Sanskrit) was imparted to students of mature age and thought, to the elementary Mahajani, Sharafi, and Lande Schools, there was a very large variety of quasi-classical vernacular and technical schools. The teachers always kept in view the requirements of individual students and the profession they were qualifying for.
There was no class instruction, as in our schools reducing all intellects to the same level and retarding the industrious for the sake of the dullard. But recitations in Sanskrit and the system of repeating lessons in chorus on the dispersion of the school encouraged such emulation as may be necessary, whilst the separate instruction of the pupil and his devotion to his work during the time that he was not reading with his tutor stimulated those habits of reflection and of private study, in which the students of present day schools are sadly deficient. Then again when the student grew older, he traveled to learn philosophy under one tutor and law under another much in the same way as students of German Universities visit various seats of learning in order to hear, say, international law at Heidelberg, the Pandects at Berlin.
It would not be without interest to point out that from the humblest beginnings in education up to the highest courses in Hindu metaphysics and science great wisdom was displayed. Traces of the ‘Kindergarten system’ are still found. The simplest methods for arresting and keeping attention were resorted to and the moral and mental capacities of children, according to their spheres of life, were everywhere carefully studied and cultivated. As for the mode of instruction, it also bore in every one of its features the emphatically practical as well as ideal aim of the Hindu legislator.
That the above statement is not an unsupported assertion; I will quote a paragraph from the first educational dispatch of the Court of Directors which was issued on the 3rd June 1814.
The Directors point out that ‘the indigenous village schools are a part of the village system and that they have formed a model to schools in England.’ Again they point out ‘this venerable and benevolent institution of the Hindus is represented to have withstood the shock of revolutions, and to its operation is ascribed the general intelligence of the native.’
In 1848 the Government of the Punjab passed into the hands of the East India Company. The first Board of Administration in the Punjab recognized the full value of the rich educational legacy, which they inherited from the decaying and disintegrating Sikh constitution. Recognizing the widespread character of the indigenous education, and the necessity of keeping up old educational traditions alive, Sir John and Sri Henry Lawrence defined their policy in matters of education in the following words: -
We intend to set up one school. If not in every village, at least in every circle of villages, so that at least should be something throughout the land in which the children do attend some rudimentary school.’
How far policy was actually carried out will be explained in another article.
     Letter by Gandhi associate Shri K T Shah to Sir Phillip, 20/2/1932
Dear Sir Philip,
I have been informed by Mahatma Gandhi that during his stay in London recently, and while speaking at some public meeting about the state of education in British India before the advent of the British in this country, he remarked that the extent of literacy was greater in those days than at the present time. He adds that you had questioned the accuracy of that statement, and called upon Mr. Gandhi to furnish proof in support of the same. Mahatmaji has, I understand, referred you to some writings in the Young India; but you do not consider that sufficient proof; and so has asked me if I could find any more acceptable substantiation for that observation. I am, therefore, addressing you this letter to try and offer that substantiation, as far as the records available could permit of my doing so. If you care to acknowledge this letter to Mahatmaji, would you at the same time send me a copy of the same?
 To begin with I need hardly point out to you that, at the time under reference, no country in the world had anything like definite, authoritative, statistical information of the type one would now recognize as proper proof in such discussions. In India particularly, thanks to the distracted state of the country, it was impossible to provide any such material on a nation-wide basis, even supposing it had been customary to compile such information from time to time. The elaborate ‘directory’, if I may so describe it, of the territories under his rule, compiled by the indefatigable Minister of the great Akbar known as the Ayeen-I-Akbari, was prepared so long before the advent of the British that I feel a hesitation even in referring to it, apart from the further fact that authoritative work suffers from other blemishes in the eyes of a too critical reader. All, therefore, that one can expect by way of proof in such matters, and at such a time, can only be in the form of impressions of people in a position to form ideas a little better and more scientific than those of less fortunately situated, or less well endowed, observers.
Such official investigations as were ordered in connection with the periodical parliamentary enquires before the renewal of the Company’s Charter in 1793, 1813, 1833, and 1853 also afford some data, though these have their own defect as is pointed out below. Other official enquiries, reports, or dicta of qualified officers, were originally for a purpose different from the one under reference here; and therefore, discussion or observation on educational matters therein must needs be taken as incidental rather than as the immediate subject of their concern, and consequently open such defects as all such incidental observation suffers from.
For the immediate purpose of this letter, will you permit me to begin by referring you to the reports of certain provincial enquiries conducted about the time when the British rule first began in those provinces? Let me, however, add a remark as applied to the country, at large, on the authority of Max Mueller, and another on the authority of the historian Ludlow-both mentioned in Keir Hardie’s work on India. “Max Mueller, on the strength of official documents and missionary reports, concerning education in Bengal prior to the British occupation, asserts that there were then 80,000 schools in Bengal, or one for every 400 of the population. Ludlow, in his History of British India, says that “in every village, which has retained its old form, I am assured that the children generally are able to read, write and cipher; but where we have swept away the village system, there the village school has also disappeared.” (Cp. B.D. Basu, Education in India under the E.I. Co., p18).
In Bombay, which came under British rule after the fall of the Peshwas in 1818, a Report of the Bombay Education Society for 1819 observes:- “There is probably as great a proportion of persons in India who can read, write, and keep simple accounts, as are to be found in European countries. The same Report for the following year notes:- ‘Schools are frequent among the natives, and abound everywhere.’ In April, 1821, Mr. Prendergast, member of the Executive Council of the then Government of Bombay, notes in a Minute on an application for 2 English schools in Thana or Panwell Talukas:- ‘I need hardly mention what every member of the Board knows as well as I do that there is hardly a village, great or small, throughout our territories, in which there is not at least one school and in larger villages more; many in every town and in large cities in every division where young natives are taught reading, writing and arithmetic, upon a system so economical, from a handful or two of grain, to perhaps a rupee per month to the schoolmaster, according to the ability of the parents, and at the same time so simple and effectual, that there is hardly a cultivator or petty dealer who is not competent to keep his own accounts with a degree of accuracy, in my opinion, beyond what we meet with among the lower orders in our own country; whilst the more splendid dealers and bankers keep their books with a degree of ease, conciseness, and clearness I rather think fully equal to those of any British merchants.’ (Cp. Commons Report, 1832 p.468).
I shall come to Madras in a moment, and revert to statistical proof such as I can find,-thereafter. Let me here refer you to the classic case of Dr. Leitner’s Report on the system of Indigenous Education in the Punjab, based on an investigation carried out by the learned Doctor, -principal of a Government College, because of a surprising difference between his figures of the people educated in indigenous schools, and those supplied by the Director of Public Instruction for the province, to the Indian Education Committee of 1882. Dr. Leitner remarks, in his introduction to his Report, -‘In short the lowest computation gives us 330,000 pupils (against little more than 190,000 at present) in the schools of the various denominations, who were acquainted with reading, writing and some method of computation; whilst thousands of them belonged to Arabic and Sanskrit colleges, in which oriental literature and systems of Oriental Law, Logic, Philosophy and Medicine, were taught to the highest standards,’ I would particularly commend to your attention this classic document of 650 odd pages (folio), the more so as Dr Sir Wm. Hunter, President of the Indian Education Committee, made a special Minute to the Report of that Committee (pp.621-2) in which he found that Dr. Leitner’s estimate of 120,000 pupils in the Punjab was actually an underestimate by some 15,000 while the official figure supplied by the D.P.I. of the province was below the actual figure by some 80,000 pupils.
Incidentally, this will suffice to show how imperfect, Inaccurate, undependable, was the official statistical information for these early days, when the people viewed with easily intelligible suspicion enquires of this nature, and so passively refused to afford the correct information wherever and whenever they could help it. Without minimizing in the least degree the value of statistical evidence, I cannot but add that such evidence is worse than useless, when we recall the conditions under which it was complied, as also the temperament and training of the officials who helped in compiling the same in those primitive times of British rule in India.
Let me now speak of Madras, that earliest settlement of British rule in India, and even now said to be the best-educated province in the Empire. Sir T. Munro in a Minute dated 10.3.1826 (Commons Report, 1832, p.506) observes that, taking the male part of the population only, and taking children of between 5-10 years of age only, as school going population, (assumed to be one-ninth of that total population) there were 713,000 male pupils that would be at school. The actual number of pupils in recognized schools was found by him to be 184,110, which works out to be a little over a fourth of the total school-going population. Sir Thomas, however, was of the opinion that the actual proportion was nearer one-third than one-fourth, owing to a large number of children receiving instruction privately, and so not included in the above calculation.
In Bengal, (Cp. Adam’s Report, 1838) the total number of children between 5-14 years of age is taken at 87,629. of these, 6,786 were returned as receiving instruction in the recognized schools, or 7.7%. This includes men and women, girls as well as boys, while in Madras only the male population was considered. On that basis, this figure could be easily raised to at least 15% of the total. There is reason to prefer this basis for calculation, since, under the conditions and ideas of the time, women could not go for education to schools publicly recognized; and so a proper index for judging of the real state of literacy is rather the male population than the total. Again, the percentage of population receiving instruction, compared to the total of school-going age, would be still higher, if we would bear in mind the fact that the so called untouchables formed parts of the total, but could not, necessarily, be included in the people receiving instruction as these were not admitted into public institutions.
In the Bombay Presidency, the total population was returned in 1829 at 4,681,735. The total number of scholars in schools was 35,153. If we take, with Sir T. Munro, one-ninth of the population to be of school-going age, the total figure of school-going age would be 520,190. This gives a percentage of 7 to the total of school-going age; while if we confine ourselves only to males, the percentage of scholars to the total population (male) of school-going age would be 14. This proportion is more than borne out by the later Report of 1841, relating to only 9 selected districts in the Presidency.
The following comparative position, between the state of things now and a hundred years ago, would be instructive, if not conclusive.
% of population of school-going age receiving primary education
                    Presidency                               1921 (males only)                  1821 (approximate)
Madras
42.5
33
Bombay
45.1
14 (highest 28 in some parts)
Bengal
37.2
16 (highest 32 in some parts)


I have already pointed out that these statistical data for the earlier period are undependable, because (1) the figures for privately educated children are not available; (2) the people were averse to disclosing what they thought to be unwarrantable bits of information; (3) the compilers of this information were not of requisite efficiency or intelligence; (4) certain large sections of the population were necessarily excluded, and had to be excluded from these calculations, if they were to be at all reliable; and so the mere percentages, uncorrected, are of no use. The closer enquiry of this type conducted by Leitner is far more reliable, and so also the obiter dicta of people in the position to have clear impressions. These people, also, generally obtained their impressions of the state of education in the area under their charge, only incidentally, while collecting information for Land Revenue Settlement of their districts; and the primary object was not to discover the real state of education in the country, but something quite different. Hence even those impressions must be held to give rather an underestimate than otherwise of the true state of affairs in this behalf, in view of the considerations mentioned already.
Friends please thank Ajay for typing in nearly 90% of the above matter. Hope you found the excerpts as enlightening as I did. Three cheers to Dharampalji for a super book. May Ishwar bless with happiness in this and subsequent births.

No comments:

Post a Comment

ஈவெராமசாமியார்- மணியம்மாள் திருமணம் பற்றி அண்ணாதுரையார்

 ஈவெராமசாமியார்- மணியம்மாள் திருமணம் பற்றி அண்ணாதுரையார்   அண்ணா எழுதிய கட்டுரை : பெரியார் மணியம்மை திருமணம்     செப்டம்பர் 20, 2023  https:...