Page:Convocation Addresses of the Universities of Bombay and Madras.djvu/177

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University of Bombay.

vidual measure of my Government. That of course is impossible, but at least I hope that I may interpret the meaning of this degree as indicating that this distinguished body has followed with its sanction and with its approval the educational policy of the Government of India since I have been connected with it. You, Mr. Vice-Chancellor, have reminded me that a large portion of my public life has been given to the promotion of education in my own land—of education in the widest and the broadest sense, of education for the most enlightened and of education for the masses. And that same policy which I endeavoured to apply when I had the honour to be connected with the Department of Education at home I have pursued in India. Gentlemen, it would have been indeed strange if I had not taken an interest in Indian education, for I have sat for many years at the feet of Lord Halifax, and I am proud to count him among my warmest friends, and to call him my honoured master. The principles of that great Despatch of 1854 were those which I sought to apply and develop when I came out to this country; but I knew that, however sound these principles might be, it would not be wise after a lapse of thirty years to take measures for practically applying them to the existing circumstances of India without first ascertaining exactly what these circumstances were and what was the best means by which the principles of that Despatch might be applied to them at the present time. I therefore thought it wise to institute a searching inquiry into the condition of education in India. That inquiry was conducted with great ability by those to whom it was entrusted, and it has resulted in the suggestion of measures which have been in the main adopted by the Government of India, and adopted, I think I may say, with general acceptance. I found, gentlemen, ever from the first moment that I accepted the office of Viceroy, that those who were interested in the progress of education in India were keenly desirous for its extension among the masses of the people. But the question of primary education in India is beset by many difficulties, the chief of which arise from the very common perhaps, but very vital, difficulty—want of funds. There were those who in their zeal for elementary schools would have been prepared to see secondary and higher education imperilled and its advance delayed, but the Government of India never yielded to views of that description—and they were always determined that, whatever measures they might take to spread primary education throughout the length and breadth of the land, they would do nothing which could endanger the advance of higher instruction. It is true that we made an appeal to private aid, and that appeal has