Towards education that is re-linked to human values and is de-linked from commercialisation.

Monthly Archives: November 2014

Contemporary examples of “revenue models” in education!

Commercialization of education is not what all are doing. There may be people who are ignorant about the dedication and devotion exhibited by individuals and institutions contributing to the uplifting of humanity and India. “Vasudaiva Kudumbakam” and “Samastha Loka Sukhino Bhavanthu” (Let ‘All in All’ Be At Peace and Happiness) are not just words, they are the daily practice and breath for many. The soul of India was not created accidentally!

The below are some contemporary examples of “revenue models” in education:


Mr Kalyana Sundaram.

During his career as a librarian in a college, he donated all his salary to charitable causes, and did additional jobs to meet his daily needs. He has pledged to donate his body and eyes. Wears khadi. Unmarried. His retirement benefits and share of family property were donated too.




Swaraj University




Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning (Sri Sathya Sai University)



If you know about such educational institutions that offers education free of cost or on the mode of ‘Gift Economy’/ ‘Pay It Forward’/ ‘Pay As Your Heart Feels’/ Pay As You Wish’ etc., please share details about these institutions in the ‘comments’ section.





The “Hindu” thought on charging fee from students


The following is part of a commentary of Swami Chinmayananda on Taittiriya Upanishad.



Dharma is a word which has no corresponding word in English. Somebody in haste had translated it as ‘righteousness’ and those who had followed him had merely repeated the same word; thus, traditionally dharma is ‘righteousness’. But it is too meagre a word to carry the load of meaning which is the contents of dharma. All those fundamental values of life which are universally good at all places and at all times; which form the foundation of all efforts at moral rearmament and all edifices of ethical perfection; which constitute the corner stones for all temples, churches, mosques, synagogues and gurudvaras; which are the eternal duties of every man who want to live up to the full dignity of a human being and strive consistently to grow into his fullest stature as a God-man in this very life. In this ampler meaning, we may, for our convenience, and not with satisfaction, translate dharma as duty.

Hinduism is built upon duties and not on rights. The European way of thought has moulded itself upon the ‘principle of rights’ and they have been growing through arrows and boomerangs, bullets and shells to reach the present when they are threatening each other with atomic weapons and secret instruments of mutual slaughter, to demand and maintain the rights of each against the rights of the others. They are demanding rights; rights are to be taken, to be acquired; to be preserved. A civilisation that is based upon ‘rights’ must necessarily come to clamour and fight and the instincts of acquiring and hoarding, keeping and maintaining should develop in that society and ultimately upset the peace.

On the other hand, the glorious Sanatana Dharma of the Hindus recognises his right ‘to do his duties’ as the fundamental privilege in life. When it is duty to be performed, a generation that has understood it, will be trained to demand of life only ample chances to fulfill their duty. Duty therefore develops the spirit of giving, the urge to be charitable rather than the lust to hoard or the anxiety to keep.

The growing buds of the generation, as they are leaving the teacher’s presence, are advised to keep this glorious principle of fulfilling their duties towards the society, towards their relations and towards themselves.

The students were not asked to pay any fees before they entered the gurukula institution. That was not the rule in ancient India; education was free. A student entering the portals of education was a pleasant challenge, as it were, to the teacher who took up the challenge and saw to it that he made out of that raw material an efficient and independent earning member of the society.

After his education, the student was not thrown out into the world of tension and chaos from which he had been for so long and so efficiently kept away in the gurukula, as today we keep them in the libraries and laboratories. On the other hand, the educational system was so organised as to work perfectly in unison with the demands of the society and the needs of living at that time, so that a child who had walked out of his teacher’s protection, from the day he reached his home, proved himself to be a fully trained soldier to fight the battle of his life.

The gurudaksina (the fee) was not even demanded of the boys when they were leaving the institution after their education. The gurukula system seemed not to justify itself to demand fees simply because they had educated the boys. The system was thorough and they were so confident of the results that they insisted that they would be receiving the payment only from the first independent income of the individual!

As soon as the student reached home, he plunged into work and his early savings that he could make entirely go towards the gurudaksina. And who among them could forget their own days of gurukula activities and the fact how, during their days, the old students had maintained the rsi universities? Thus the boys of each generation continued subscribing towards the gurukula funds almost year after year or at least during the various stages of their life.







“India do not have enough skilled professionals”

Saaar, I have a problem.

Tell me, ya, what is it?

Today is my Ph.D. final theses viva. I do not know the meanings of some of the words in my presentation PPT. You are my research guide, please help me.

What is this, ya? Telling this now only?

Saaar, i did not make the PPT myself.

That you need not tell. I know it earlier also. What competency do you have?

Now no competency saar. My competencies got finished with the earlier 2-3 doctor committe meeting and preparations for today’s viva.

It is doctoral committee meeting, not doctor committee meeting, at least get those meanings correct.

Okay Saar. What to do now? Shall i order for some extra soda sarbath or apple joose for viva audiences so that they will remain silent?

Yes, do that. It is a good idea. Give cashewnuts too. You are giving lunch, with sweets and non-vegetarian dishes, to all, correct?

Correct Saar. I pledged my wife’s golden jewellery to find money for this.

Don’t worry. After your Ph.D., we will apply for a major AICTE/ DST project, and will ask students to do it as an assignment. I will show you the way.

You are great, Saar. You are my way and destination. You are god to me.

No, No, don’t mention… Did you meet the members of your viva committee? Are they happy?

Yes Saar. One of them wanted to go to a temple. So i took him in a car, and paid money for his puja. He is very charitable, Saar. Wanted to do annadaanam. That money also i paid.

Good! So you got committee member’s blessings, god’s blessings and poor people’s blessing also. 3-in-1 bonus, ya. What a great man you are. Keep everybody happy.

Okay Saar. Saar, that ring is really looking nice on your fingers.

Hmmm… My wife did not like it. She says that i should not have taken this ring from you. But how can i refuse it? God is giving it through you. It is all his will and blessing. Who am i to refuse?

Yes Saar. Ladies like that only. Always says, don’t want, don’t want. Tell my respects to madam. Very kind madam, Saar.

Madam says that there is a new organic store that has opened in the shopping mall. Asking what is your opinion about the vegetables there.

It is good Saar. I will buy vegetables today evening from there, and deliver it to madam.

What a helpful person you are. There is no need for any of these. Ok, let us get ready for your viva.