D.J. Kumarage, B.A. (Lon) took the rein of Rahula College, Matara in 1937. It was a critical period in the history of Rahula. He courageously faced those challenges and overcame all obstacles and constraints and rebuilt Rahula.
Principal Kumarage made Rahula the most radiant centre of learning in the South during his tenure. Its present glory and fame is the result of his untiring effort and dedication. C.A. Ariyathilake, as the Manager of Rahula stood by him as a tower of strength in every crisis.
Mr. Kumarage had a brilliant staff who were dedicated and devoted. One of the outstanding teachers was late Justin Wijewardena, a famous writer and a former M.P. for Matara
Mr. Kumarage had a brilliant staff who were dedicated and devoted. One of the outstanding teachers was late Justin Wijewardena, a famous writer and a former M.P. for Matara.
He showed remarkable skills in management, administration and organization.
Within a short period of his able principalship, Rahula reached the Zenith of glory and reputation among other assisted schools of the South.
In 1940, under Mr. Kumarage’s dynamic leadership, Rahula produced the best results among all schools in the island at the senior school certificate examination. He gave the correct guidance to his students in their studies as well as in their moral conduct and behaviour.
Students of all races studied as sons of one mother under the roof of Rahula because Mr. Kumarage gave an honourable place for ethnic unity and co-existence. There were Tamil teachers on the teaching staff.
With the generous assistance of well-wishers past pupils and philanthropists, Mr. Kumarage added several magnificent buildings to the college as the numbers of students were gradually increasing day by day.
About three decades ago a countless number of students of Principal Kumarage occupied some of the most illustrious and prestigious positions in government and other institutions in Sri Lanka as well as abroad.
Mr. Kumarage’s period was known as the ‘Golden Period’ of Rahula
Mr. Kumarage’s period was known as the ‘Golden Period’ of Rahula. His vast achievements were largely due to the cordial relationship he established with his learned staff.
Mr. Kumarage initially was an ardent supporter of the National Freedom Movement. He associated with national heroes of the calibre of F.R. and D.S. Senanayake, SWRD Bandaranaike, Sir Ponnambalam Ramanathan and he had also close contacts with Ven. Pelane Sri Vajiragnana Thera, Kalukondayawe Sri Pragnasekera etc.
He was closely guided by Anagarika Dharmapala and Colonel Henry Steel Olcott. Mr. Kumarage produced many generations of eminent and worthy citizens who have already created history in their own rank and file. Some of them are eminent physicians, surgeons, university professors, engineers, administrators, ministerial secretaries, ambassadors, parliamentarians and successful businessmen.
Mr. Kumarage had a towering and dignified personality. He practised what he preached. He loved his students. The name of Mr. Kumarage will be gratefully and affectionately remembered by all Rahulians for his greet achievements.
His life was active
And the elements so elegant
In him, that all Rahulans will
Bow their heads and say
To all the world
“He was a Greet Man”
By Dahlan Salahudeen,
(An Ex-Exco-Member of the OBA)