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Puttur Sri Somaskantha College - 80 years of excellence in national education

Jaffna, Puttur Sri Somaskantha College which was established in 1931 by the great philanthropist and patriot Malavarayar Kandiah is completing over 80 years in the sphere of education. Sri Somaskantha College has served the Hindu community splendidly offering a wholesome education which has been defined as the first and the fairest thing that the best of men and women can ever have. The educational achievements combined with meritorious feats achieved by Somaskanda College in co-curricular and extra-curricular activities are excellent.

This college was founded by Malavarayar Kandiah who was strongly devoted and dedicated to his religion and was filled with a burning desire that students should receive their education in a Hindu atmosphere. In fact, according to Swami Vivekananda: that the highest of gifts is the giving of spiritual knowledge, the next is the giving of secular knowledge and the next is the saving of life, the last is giving food and drink. He who gives spiritual knowledge saves the soul from many a birth. He who gives secular knowledge opens the eyes of human beings towards spiritual knowledge.”

Jaffna, Puttur Sri Somaskantha College

Indeed, Malavarayar Kandiah who was a man with vision, mission and foresight had fulfilled his desires and had maintained and preserved his commitment to excellence despite the hardship faced by the people of Jaffna. Further, it is no secret that this educational institution has moulded within its framework, generations of patriotic, loyal and public spirited citizens who have proved to be the country’s pride.

Hindu culture

The history of this college reveals its progress and its growth from small beginnings and its contemporary position justifying the ideals and aspirations of its founder Malavarayar Kandiah. The past students of this college have adorned the public service of this country. Furthermore, the generations of students who have passed through the portal of Somaskanda have no doubt been fortunate as they have been able to imbibe the spirit of Hindu religion and Hindu culture. They have also had the privilege of studying under very distinguished Principals and teachers.

Sangarappillai Veerasingam of Atchuveli, the first Principal of this college, and English trained teacher was held in high esteem by parents, teachers and students for his high degree of discipline and method of teaching English language and English literature. In fact, he was an English scholar and even the former principal of Hartley College late K Poorananpillai once said that Veerasingam was an authority in English grammar and pronunciations. The former Minister of Education and also Prime Minister for short period Dr W. Dahanayake had high regards for Veerasingam since he had vast knowledge in various matters pertaining to education and even astrology. Incidently, he was the father of V Anandasangari, who was the former Member of Parliament to Kilinochchi.

Subramaniam Kumaraswamy who succeded Veerasingam as Principal hailed from a distinguished family in Thambasiddy, Point Pedro, guided the destiny of this college successfully and gloriously too well for nigh 13 years. By his sympathetic understanding of the difficulties of the parents, teachers, students, combined with dedication, devotion and commitment to duty, he succeeded in winning the full confidence and co-operation of everyone.

In fact, Sri Somaskanda College saw, during the period of Kumarasamy - all round growth and development. He was an institution by himself. He was worthy of emulation by everyone and was a consistent disciplinarian whose influence was felt throughout the school.

V Arumugam, who was the Principal of this college and served this educational institution for 23 years, was an embodiment of discipline. During his period the examination results were excellent and many students entered various faculties of the university. Even the performance in sports was of high standard.

Quality education

After retirement of V Arumugam, Vageesan who was the deputy principal was appointed as Principal in 2006. Thereafter, E. Maheswarathasan was appointed as the Principal. Even Miss V Sivaleelathevy who was the deputy principal, acted as the Principal for a short period.

Rajendram Rajamahenthiran who is the present Principal of this college should be highly commended for piloting the affairs of Sri Somaskanda College with total dedication and commitment. Even the Old Boys Association (Colombo branch) is rendering yeoman service for the improvement of this college.

In fact, this college started the ‘Isuru school programme’ in 2010 according to Mahinda Chinthana programme and Northern Province Governor G A Chandrasiri laid the foundation stone to the new buildings which include office of the Principal, deputy principal, staffroom, labs for A-L General Science, Agriculture and Home Economics, Library, water tanks etc. Besides the college has published an annual publication titled ‘Somaskandan’.

Puttur Sri Somaskanda College has provided quality education over the years. This is testified by the fact that among its notable alumni are many builders of modern Sri Lanka and also those who continue to play leading roles in different walks of life in the country and also beyond its shores.

Undoubtedly, the flame of wisdom and brilliance imparted to students at Puttur Sri Somaskanda College will permeate one’s very being and make one shine to dispel the gloom of poverty and ignorance.

As such, let us remember with gratitude the founder of this prestigious college late Malavarayar Kandiah and his family members and also the commitment of the past and present Principals and teachers who have elevated this college to pristine position in the island and given her fame, name, glory and global dimension.

 

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