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Showing posts from November, 2011

EDUCATING THE MASSES, MAHARAJAH JUNG BAHADUR'S LEGACY

The long white two-storied stucco building perpetually casting its reflection on the Queen's Pond nearby has been standing like a beacon of hope for the multitude since I can remember. People told me that this is where my father had studied. I could only imagine him with a pride of young privileged Ranas trotting on horseback to school every morning and trotting back home every evening. I used to wonder whether the teachers then had the courage to reprimand my father and uncles just as they were already empowered by the new democratic dispensation to reprimand us less fortunate souls by the time we went to school.

Prime Minister Jung Bahadur Rana brought home from his England visit of 1850 A.D. European manners and mores soon to be reflected in the newly minted court dresses and etiquette, the opulent palaces and public places. He was also determined to give education to the Nepalese masses hitherto deprived by the Brahminical monopoly on higher level of Sanskrit studies. In the N…