Tamil Nadu

Kumbakonam Vedic school gets a facelift

The main hall of the Raja Veda Kavya Patasala in Kumbakonam that has been renovated.

The main hall of the Raja Veda Kavya Patasala in Kumbakonam that has been renovated.  


A legendary Vedic school on the banks of the Cauvery in Kumbakonam that was established in 1542 and which has turned out numerous renowned scholars and pandits since then is all set to get a facelift after extensive renovation of the historic buildings.

The Raja Veda Kavya Patasala, established by the famous scholar administrator par excellence Govinda Dikshitar, is entering a new phase with the authorities claiming renewed interest and patronage among the public in Vedic studies in tune with the times. The renovated building is being inaugurated today.

Sri Govinda Diskhitar, who was the mentor, preceptor, and Chief Minister for Sevvappa Nayak, Achyuthappa Nayak and Raghunatha Nayak, who all ruled Thanjavur, established the Vedic school. The institution has been catering to the spiritual yearning of people for generations.

In 1972, Advaita Vidyacharya Maharajah Saheb Sri Govinda Diskhitar Punya Smarana Samithi was formed to administer the patasala under the guidance of eminent scholar and physician Dr. V.R. Lakshmikantha Sarma. He formed the Raja Veda Kavya Patasala Society that takes care of the curriculum and academic administration of the patasala while the samithi looks after the monetary needs of the institution, staff, and students.

The first donor to the samithi was legendary singer M.S. Subbulakshmi who gave away one-third of her Magsaysay Award money to the samiti.

Courses being offered at the patasala include Samhithantham (six years), Kramantham (eight years), and Ghanantham (10 years) that grant certifications as Veda Bhushanam, Veda Vichakshana and Veda Praveen to the candidates. Rig Veda, Krishna Yajur and Shukla Yajur Veda as also Sama Veda are being imparted to the students here.

At present, more than 150 students from across the nation are pursuing various courses in the patasala under 13 learned Veda Adhyapakas while two Sanskrit Sironmanis impart Kavya lessons to the students.

With around 50 applicants being admitted to the patasala every year, the need for increased space resulted in the institution getting a new expansive 13,000 square feet building that was opened in 2004.

The old building, which last underwent renovation in 1933, has now been revamped extensively and is sporting a refreshingly new look.

Patasala officials observe that the institution would be teaching Sanskrit to all aspirants without caste, sex or religious distinctions on a regular basis. Apart from Veda and prayogas, Patasala students will be imparted social skills such as painting, cooking and those required for meeting the modern day demands.

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Printable version | Dec 12, 2018 8:23:34 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/kumbakonam-vedic-school-gets-a-facelift/article7828621.ece

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