By OUR STAFF REPORTER
Dehradun, 7 Apr: The book, ‘A Beacon of Light – Mahadevi Bhatnagar and Her Legacy, Mahadevi Kanya Pathshala’, is a history of Mahadevi Kanya Pathshala established in 1902 in the home of Mahadevi Bhatnagar and her husband Jyoti Swarup.
This institution became a premier educational institution for girls in North India. In UP it was the first institution for to have High School classes for girls, while similar institutions in Benares and Allahabad were established later on. The institution acquired a nationalist outlook. Students from this institution were active during the Quit India movement. A unique feature of this institution was that the management was not supposed to interfere in the day to day affairs of the institution. That was to be the sole responsibility of the teachers. Right from the early days there was an emphasis on the all round personality development of the students. The institution had a magazine called ‘Gunjan’, a debating society and a students’ union. There was emphasis on activities like sports, music and dramatics.Eminent persons from literature, public life and the arts have visited the institution from time to time.
The Intermediate College became a degree college in 1958 and a post graduate college a few years later. The college started a magazine -Udita, in which freshers were encouraged to write. Some teachers and students from the college have made a name as literary critics and writers – Kamna Chandra, Shashiprabha Shastri, Kusum Chaturvedi, Archana Painuly, Vidya Singh, Alpana Mishra, Naseem Bano and Chaitanya Kumari. Himani Shivpuri, Amardeep Jha, Shruti Ulfat and Nivedita Uniyal have made a name as actors on stage, television and films. Students from the painting department have put up exhibitions in various cities of North India. Mamta Singh and Richa Kamboj, who teach painting, have made a name for themselves as painters. The National Social Service unit of the college has done very good work.
The college celebrated its Centenary in 2002.The then President of India, Dr APJ Abdul Kalam visited the institution to commemorate the occasion.
Another tradition of this institution has been the teachers taking responsibility for the welfare of students. At the beginning of every new academic session, the principal tells the students that teachers are available to them at all hours. Students are free to discuss all their problems with the teachers. Periodical health camps are organised for the students. All these facts have been mentioned in this book.
By OUR STAFF REPORTER