Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Saturday said Thomas Babington Macaulay was sent to India to throttle the country’s traditional system of education and enslave Indians mentally.
He said the revival of ‘gurukuls’ was necessary to counter the effects of Macaulay’s system of education on Indian minds but advised that these traditional schools should synthesise their education with emerging technologies like artificial intelligence and quantum technology.
“Macaulay was sent to India to enslave Indians even mentally by colonising their minds,” Mr Singh said, addressing a large gathering of seers and students at the foundation laying ceremony of Patanjali Gurukulam in Haridwar.
Talking about Macaulay’s attitude of disregard towards India’s cultural and literary legacy, the Union minister said the British official had once declared that an almirah in a European library was worth the whole of India’s literary heritage.
“He (Macaulay) said this about a country that created the Vedas, the Upanishads and the Gita,” Mr Singh said.
“The education system introduced by Macaulay spawned generations of Indians who grew up with a sense of inferiority about their own culture and traditions,” the minister said.
He said Maharshi Dayanand Saraswati and Swami Darshananand established institutions like ‘gurukuls’ to carry forward India’s traditional system of education and restore its glory.
The Union minister praised Yoga Guru Ramdev for his efforts to revive the institution established by Swami Darshananand in the name of Patanjali Gurukulam saying a new India needed new ‘gurukulams’ which combined traditional education with emerging and cutting-edge technologies.
He also praised Ramdev for popularising Yoga, the ancient Indian discipline of physical and mental well-being, not only in the country but also abroad, saying it was an exemplary service to humanity.
“People can be seen performing yogic kriyas not only in parks but also in buses, trains, metros and flights. This is a result of Baba Ramdev’s relentless efforts,” he said.
He also praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s efforts behind the proclamation of June 21 by the UN as the International Yoga Day. The Union minister said the journey of Ramdev and Acharya Balkrishna from their humble beginnings to the height of their achievements at present is a source of inspiration to the whole country.
He also urged them to do something about the revival of Sanskrit saying it was a scientific language but the number of people capable of speaking and writing it is increasingly getting smaller.
Earlier, accompanied by Uttarakhand Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami, his Madhya Pradesh counterpart Mohan Yadav, Union Minister Arjun Ram Meghwal and Rajya Sabha MP and BJP spokesman Sudhanshu Trivedi, Mr Singh participated in a havan on the Jwalapur Mahavidyalaya ground and laid the foundation stone of Patanjali Gurukulam.
Speaking during the programme, Mr Dhami said the country is getting rid of its slave mentality under the dynamic leadership of Prime Minister Modi.
The country is eagerly waiting for January 22 when the consecration of the Ram Temple in Ayodhya will take place. There is no limit to the joy of Ram devotees and those who love this country, he said. “It would not have been possible without Prime Minister Narendra Modi.”
Speaking on the occasion, Mr Trivedi said a new India which takes pride in itself, in its own traditions and cultural symbols is emerging under the leadership of PM Modi.
Addressing the students of Patanjali Yogpeeth attending the ceremony, Mr Trivedi said India is the youngest country in the world but the oldest civilisation and he can see the combination of the two in the precincts of the gurukul.
“In this combination here, I can see the seeds of India’s great future,” he said.
Mr Meghwal showered praise on PM Modi for the passage of legislation in Parliament which would replace the Indian Penal Code with Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita.
“In this way, a penal code inherited from our foreign rulers will be replaced with our own system of justice,” he said.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)