Humble Beginnings

Late. Shri K.B. Pillai

Bharat Education Society, Kurla had its humble beginnings in 1959, at the poorest and largest slum area of Mumbai (then Bombay) at Kurla. A group of likeminded Malayalees under the leadership of our founder patron Shri K.B. Pillai started Bharatiya Vidyalayam with help from general public, Two class rooms were rented out at Vazir house, which was situated at Halav Pool, near Masrani Lane, Kurla(w), Mumbai 400 070. The Bharatiya Vidyalayam was inaugurated by Shri V.K. Krishna Menon, the then Defence Minister of India, in 1959.

In year 1959 there were 41 students learning in the Malayalam, Tamil mediums as the organization at that time was meant for only South Indians. One of the objective of the trust was to impart quality education and at a reasonable fees. The other objectives were empowerment of the Malayalees children through education. In the subsequent years, 1960 and 1961, the student’s strength increased to 65 to 185 respectively. The first Annual General Body meeting was held in Nov 1960 at Holy Cross School. The space constraint was the biggest hurdle for development of school.

The members of B.E.S. felt the need to change the medium of teaching language from Malayalam to English. On Vijayadashmi day of October, 1960, English medium was started. It began with 30 students.

Shri K.N. Venkatraman
Shri K.B. Pillai along with Shri K.N. Venketaraman had taken charge of ‘BharatiyaVidyalayam’ housed in a small shed called ‘Vazir House’ in Kurla in the most backward slum areas of Kurla, where education was a dire necessity. Being Secretaries of the newly formed Bharat Education Society, Kurla, they were struggling to get students to join the newly started school and were also desperate in running of the school, financially. It is during their “hunt” for benevolent philanthropic malayalees in Mumbai (they “knocked on many a doors”, in vain) that they approached Shri G.P. Nair who thereafter became the President of Bharat Education Society and made the donation for the modern building for “Karthika”, as described below.

Late. Karthika P. Nair

In the year 1967, the then management of Bharat Education Society located at Kurla headed by Shri K.B. Pillai with strong support from Shri Venketaraman, desperately felt the need for a good school building to house an educational facility which was started by them in 1959. Shri G.P. Nair, husband of Late Karthika P. Nair and Managing Director of Bombay Drug House Pvt. Ltd. came forward with a handsome donation of Rs.1.5 Lakhs (in the 60’s Lakhs were equivalent in rupee value to Crores or more today). This spontaneous donation from Shri G.P. Nair was instrumental in helping to construct the first modern RCC Building for Bharat Education Society. As per Shri G.P. Nair’s & his family members’ wish, the school was renamed as Karthika High School, which was built on a newly purchased plot at Hall Road, Kurla. The school was dedicated to the memory of Late Karthika P. Nair, wife of Shri G.P. Nair.

Late. Shri G.P. Nair

Shri G.P. Nair was the then President of Bharat Education Society as well as Managing Director of Bombay Drug House Pvt. Ltd. He was also the Treasurer of Bombay Regional (Presidency) Congress Committee and Past-President of IDMA (Indian Drug Manufacturers’ Association).
The new school building for “Karthika” was constructed at a newly purchased plot on Hall Road, Kurla. The foundation stone for the building was laid by His Holiness Shri Chinmayanandaji in 1967. With divine blessings, the building was completed in one year and was inaugurated by the then Governor of Maharashtra, Late Dr. P.V. Cherian and his wife Late Dr. Tara Cherian in 1968. This august event, kindled the lamp of progress for “Karthika”.

Late. Shri Chinmayanandaji

Our Donor President Shri G.P. Nair expired in 1990. Soon, thereafter, the Founder Secretary and most loved Patron Shri K.B. Pillai also left us to the God’s abode. As per wishes of both Shri K.B. Pillai and Shri G.P. Nair, the Presidentship was bestowed on Dr.Gopakumar G. Nair by the then Managing Council. The Bharat Education Society and the schools thereunder, which was in a negative financial state in 1990, commenced the modernization and financial restructuring phase thereafter under the unifying and able leadership of Dr.Gopakumar G. Nair. The first few years, Mr. Nelson Perera continued as Principal. Shri K.N. Venkataraman continued to be associated with BES as Vice President till 2006. The finances of BES Group received a fillip and strength, with the active participation of Mr. R. Ramakrishnan as Treasurer of Bharat Education Society with his vast experience in the Defence Departments of Government of India, Mr. Ramakrishnan introduced strong financial discipline and consolidation in Bharat Education Society and its schools, with the support and motivation from Dr. Nair. The revamped Governing Council with Dr. Nair as President, Shri Ramakrishnan as Treasurer and CEO, Smt. Sheela Nair and Shri Vivek Pillai as Secretaries, made steady progress in quality and quantum of education in Karthika which became a Junior College also in the meantime. While Dr.Nair continued during this growth phase as President from 1990 till date for nearly 25 years, Smt. Karthika Nair and Shri K.P. Prabhakar joined as Vice President. Smt. Sheela Nair and Shri Vivek Pillai became Secretaries. Shri Ramakrishnan became CFO & Patron, Smt. Sheela Nair, Secretary became CEO and Shri Ramachandran G. Nair became Treasurer in 2012.

The present team of office bearers and Managing Council members are as follows :

  • Dr.Gopakumar.G. Nair (President)
  • Ms. Karthika Nair (Vice-President)
  • Mr. K.P.Prabhakar (Vice-President)
  • Mr. Vivek.B.Pillai (Secretary)
  • Ms. Sheela Nair (Secretary)
  • Mr. Ramachandran Nair (Treasurer)
  • Ms. ShobhaMohankumar (M.C.Member)
  • Ms. Poornima Nair (M.C.Member)
  • Mr. R.Ramakrishnan (Patron Member)
  • Ms. Sheila Nair (M.C.Member)
  • Ms. VeenaSashikumar (M.C.Member)
  • Mr. K.V.Narayan (M.C.Member)