David Hare

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David Hare : First Secular Educationist of India

By Sarojesh Mukerjee

Category: Forthcoming

This is the remarkable story of a Scotsman who arrived in Calcutta in 1801 to make a living as a watchmaker but remained in the city, having dedicated his life to the cause of upliftment of Indians through modern education. Several leading institutions of the city, founded and nurtured by him, contributed significantly to the Bengal Renaissance and continue to prosper today. He successfully kept religion out of the classroom, no mean feat in an era when traditional learning was deeply religious and efforts were being made to spread the Christian evangelical influence in schools and colleges through missionaries. Almost more Bengali than Bengalis themselves, he was hailed as a Mahatma for his selfless, untiring efforts as well as thoughtful and boundless care for his students, many of whom became his lifelong friends. David Hare is that rarest of the rare personages of the colonial era who worked for the sole benefit of his adopted country without any expectation of reward or even, recognition.

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