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Bharat Vidhalaya

school01Bharat Vidhalaya was established as a school for children from families of very limited financial means and from all communities. Today, 10% of the children are from families clearly poor but there is a large number of children from struggling families who can still manage to pay the school fees imposed by the Government, but this is indeterminable and it is left so by purpose. The majority of the school population is from surrounding districts. Its present composition is: Thai, 45%; Sino- Thai, 45%; Indians 10%. The School is open to students from all countries and religions from 3 to 18 years of age.

The School was founded in 1930, under the original name of Bharat Vidhalaya (abbr.T B.v.) and its very first location was on Trok Italian, Lang Wang Burapha Road. It had Mr Raghunath Pawa as its first headmaster who taught boys Urdu and Arithmetic. Mr Mahasai Mohanlal taught English there, privately. Subsequently, with the increasing number of students and with the arrival of Mr Somdev Chopra and Mrs Vedvati Chopra as new teachers, the school expanded its curriculum and the presence of Mrs Chopra allowed it to become co-educational and to cater also for girls’ education. During this time, the school came under the jurisdiction of the Royal Thai Ministry of Education but, with the Ministry’s permission, it continued to teach Hindi and English.

The present School, first opened on the 5th of December, 1939, was founded under the Hindu Samaj’s control and patronage, under a similar name differring slightly in spelling from that of the original name. Its first premises were at 2084-2090 Unakan Road, Tambon Wangburapapirom, Amphur Phra Nakorn, Changwhat Phra Nakom. It moved to the present address on the 20th of May 1948.

school02During WWII, on April 18, 1941, the School was temporarily shut down when Bangkok was under the threat of being bombed. Its teachers were still paid their salary throughout the closure. All the school records were unfortunately destroyed sometime during this period. The school was repaired and reopened on September 4, 1941 under Acharn Pathai Amatayakul, as its headmaster, who rebuilt its archives and collections and enlarged its Primary School course up to a maximum of 270 pupils.

The new premises, the present ones, were inaugurated on the 20th of May 1948 by H E Laing Chaiyakul, the then Minister of Education, in the presence of distinguished personalities such as H E the Ambassador of India and Phra Anumarn Rajathorn. In the same year, the School occupied two buildings and extended its courses up to Class VI, equivalent to today’s Mor Sor 3, and it was allowed to enroll up to 440 pupils.

In 1965, the Hindu Samaj Committee demolished the old two-storey school and built the present three-storey Thepmonthien Building. The Supreme Patriarch of Wat Sraket laid its foundation stone on the 20th of August, 1965.

In 1969, the School was graced and honoured by the august presence of Their Majesties The King and Queen of Thailand on the occasion of the inauguration of the Shri Dev Mandir Temple (Wat Thepmonthien) on the auspicious 11th day of June, the anniversary of the foundation of the Hindu Samaj.

In 1983, the Office of Private Education (Saw Chaw) ordered the demolition of the other building because it had become too old and a hazard to pupils.

In 1991 the Hindu Samaj established a kindergarten and the present classes now go from Anuban 1 (K 1) to Mor Sor 3 with a maximum enrollment capacity of 637 pupils.

Today, the school is located on the ground floor of the Thepmonthien Building and has a one-storey refectory on the left of the main entrance and a kindergarten playground on the right side. Its area covers 1 rai 2 nan and 2 wah (3,502 my), out of which 1,250 my are used as an open field. It employs 14 teachers and 3 teachers’ assistants and a proportional clerical and service staff. The school has Thai as the spoken medium. English, though, is compulsory in all classes and Hindi is optional.