Mangaluru, June 30, 2018: Late. Kudmul Ranga Rao’s 159th Birth anniversary was marked on June 29, he is a well known social reformer, known for his fight against the practice of untouchability and caste system, establishment of equality and the implementation of etiquette through which he attempted to improve the existence of the poor and dalits.
Professionally, Kudmul Ranga Rao was an advocate who worked for truth and justice, giving legal assistance to the poor and dalits through arguments and was famously known as ‘Poor man’s friend’ and ‘Poor man’s advocate’. During the mid-18th century, he created a particular department for the development of dalits and designed programmes for the establishment of particular schools, colonies, and distribution of land and wells. Dalits should learn to be self –reliant. He established a ‘Bhajana Mandira’ in every colony to develop self-esteem, implement religious activities, unify and the development of the association. He followed and acted upon how to implement dalits right to live, right to reside, right to education and employment through his social activities.
Kudmul Ranga Rao was born on June 29th 1859 in a ‘Saraswat Bhraman’ family and lost his father in his childhood. With great difficulty he finished his education at a school in Kasaragod and then came over to Mangaluru in search of employment.
Opened a school for the untouchables : During the end of the 18th century, dalits did not have free access to any school. Then, Ranga Rao opened a school for untouchables at Nandigudda near Valencia and provided food facility for the children there. In 1892, from his own money he bought a rented house at Chilimbi and opened a primary school for dalits here, but due to trouble inflicted by a few vested interests, he was forced to close the school. He later started a primary school at Kankanady, Boloor and Daddalkad.
Industrial training for dalits : With aim to make dalit’s self-reliant, he started industrial training for dalits at a building in Shedigudde. He provided land and constructed houses for the people of ‘Koraga’ community. He also provided industrial help and barren land for the people of this community at Udupi-Puttur.
Girls’ hostel : He established a hostel for girl students coming from far off villages and thereby promoted inspiration for education and opportunity for development. He gave teacher training to schedule cast students and appointed them as schedule caste teachers at the schools he had established at Babugudde, Daddalkad, Ullal, Talapady, Thokuru, Boloor, Mulki, Udupi, Bannanje, Nejaru and other schools and thus became a light to their lives by helping in their overall development.