February 21, 2024

HPAS/Allied Mains 2022 Answer Writing Challenge Day 15: Model Answer

Question: Throw Some Light On Life Of Ishwar Chand Vidyasagar? 8 Marks (120 words)

Answer: 

Introduction

  • Vidyasagar Ishwar Chandra was a Sanskrit scholar, educator, social reformer, author, and philanthropist .
  • Vidyasagar was from Bengal.
  • One of the finest thinkers and activists of the nineteenth century (century of social-religious reforms in the modern history).

Main Body

Early Life : 

  • Ishwar Chandra Bandyopadhyay was born on 26 September 1820 in Birsingha village of Midnapore district, West Bengal.
  • His father Thakurdas Bandyopadhyay and mother Bhagavati Devi were very religious persons. 
  • He spent his childhood days in abject poverty as the economic condition was not that stable
  • The title ‘Vidyasagar’ (ocean of knowledge) was given to him due to his vast knowledge in almost all the subjects.
  • Poet Michael Madhusudan Dutta while writing about Ishwar Iswar Chandra Vidyasagar Chandra said: “The genius and wisdom of an ancient sage, the energy of an Englishman and the heart of a Bengali mother”.
  • He was a well-known writer, intellectual and above all a staunch follower of humanity.
  • He was the great scholar, academician and reformer

Education

  • He was a brilliant student. His quest for knowledge was so intense that he used to study on street lights as it was not possible for him to afford a gas lamp at home. 
  • He cleared all the examinations with excellence and in quick succession.
  • He was rewarded with a number of scholarships for his academic performance.
  • In the year 1839, Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar successfully cleared his Law examination. 
  • In 1841, at the age of twenty-one years, He joined Fort William College as a head of the Sanskrit department.
  • Demise: He passed away on 29 July 1891 at the age of 70 years.
  • After his death, Rabindranath Tagore said, “One wonders how God, in the process of producing forty million Bengalis, produced a man!”

Contributions

  • He was a part of the larger social movement called the Bengal Renaissance, which started with the enlightened leadership of Raja Rammohan Roy. 
  • He brought a revolution in the education system of Bengal.
  • In his book, Barno-Porichoy” (Introduction to the letter),Vidyasagar refined the Bengali language and made it accessible to the common strata of the society.
  • He used to spend a part of his scholarships and salary for the welfare of those poor people. He would also buy medicine for the sick.
  • He proposed and pushed for the Widow Remarriage Act of 1856 in India and raised concern for the abolition of child marriage and polygamy.
  • He also opened the doors of the colleges and other educational institutions to lower caste students, which was earlier reserved only for the Brahmins.
  • For his immense generosity and kind-heartedness, people started addressing him as Dayar Sagar” (ocean of kindness).
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