Hunter Commission – Recommendations, Introduction, Merits and Demerits

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 14th, 2023

The Hunter Commission of 1882 was chaired by Sir William Hunter. The commission of 1892 had the major objective of scrutinizing the non-implementation of Wood’s Despatch of 1854. The Hunter Commission 1919 was constituted to examine and scrutinize the horrific slaughter at the Jallianwala Bagh. Under General Dyer’s command, people were massacred, including women, children, and the elderly, and fifteen hundred were wounded on that terrible day. Lord William Hunter directed the investigating committee. The second Hunter Commission was established on October 29, 1919.

Hunter Commission 1882 aimed to uplift and upgrade the elementary education system. It focused on the essentiality of extending and uplifting the education system at primary and secondary levels. The article provides complete information on the Hunter Commissions of 1882 and 1919. The aspirants preparing for the UPSC exam must have a detailed understanding of all the factors and pertinent information relating to the Hunter Commission and download the UPSC notes.

Introduction of Hunter Commission 1882

The primary and foremost objectives of the Hunter Commission were to focus on primary education. It also examined the implementation of Wood’s Despatch 1854 and presented the reforms in the education system.

  • The essentiality of uplifting the education system in the country was acknowledged. It also aimed to eliminate and mitigate the defects in the education system of the country.
  • The General Education Council in India was instituted, and Viceroy Lord Ripon had the responsibility of administering the status of education in India.
  • Another objective was to evaluate whether the Government ought to be permitted to facilitate education for the masses.
  • It also had the objective of uplifting higher education or secondary education in the country.

Objectives of Hunter Commission 1882

The major objectives of the Hunter Commission 1882 were to mainly lay focus on the level and state of the primary education system in India. It also presented suggestions and advice for the improvement of education at the primary level.

  • It also included evaluating the work of religious missionaries in uplifting the education of India.
  • The major objectives of the Hunter Commission also included probing into the implementation of the Wood’s Despatch and using the grant for reforms in the education sector.
  • The Commission also considered taking care of secondary and higher education though the main focus was on facilitating primary education.

Recommendations of Hunter Commission 1882

The recommendations presented by the Hunter Commission led to a turning point in the education system in India. They are listed below.

  • There was a complete segregation of the funds allocated to the rural and urban areas. This further proceeded to the effective and useful utilization of the funds allocated in the rural areas for the upliftment of rural schools.
  • The district boards along with the municipal boards were entrusted with the responsibility of governing and regulating the management of primary education.
  • The private parties were given the responsibility for establishing secondary schools, in accordance with the guidelines of the model schools of the government.
  • The curriculum at the secondary levels was classified into vocational and academic subjects.
  • The Hunter Commission 1882 also aimed to improve the active participation of women and girls in schools.
  • The curriculum of the primary classes was designed to be instructed in the mother tongue. It comprised the subjects of arithmetic, geography, and agriculture.
  • The educated individuals were recruited for lower-level government jobs.
  • The Hunter Commission also laid emphasis on uplifting higher education, by facilitating adequate infrastructure facilities.

Conclusion of Hunter Education Commission

This marked the first establishment of the education system of British India. It rightly brought out the concerns about the need for altering the education system.

  • The recommendations that were presented by the Hunter Commission were accepted and the reforms and revamping of primary and secondary education were brought forth.
  • There was a reduction in the number of British subjects in the school. The number of students moving and getting educated also surged. The Hunter Commission also led to the establishment of the Punjab University.

Who was William Hunter?

Sir William Hunter was appointed the chairman of the Hunter Education Commission. He had his education at Glasgow University. Sir William was appointed assistant magistrate and collector of Birbhum, Bengal in 1862. He authored numerous books such as “The Annals of Rural Bengal” and “The Imperial Gazetteer in India”. Later, he was appointed as the Vice-Chancellor of Calcutta University.

Hunter Commission 1919

The Hunter Commission of 1919 was established after the tragic massacre at Jallianwala Bagh to investigate the matter. The commission comprised members of both Indian and British origin. They altogether criticized the actions of General Dyer. They condemned General Dyer’s order to open fire at the unarmed crowd. The intent of Dyer to impose a moral effect through the exhibition of force was censured by the Commission. The Hunter Commission members are as listed here

  • Lord William Hunter (Different person from Sir William Hunter who chaired the earlier Hunter Commission)
  • W.F Rice
  • Justice G.C Rankin
  • Major General Sir George Barrow
  • Sir Chimanlal Setalvad
  • Pandit Jagat Narayan
  • Sardar Sultan Ahmad Khan

Hunter Commission Report 1920

The Hunter Commission report was presented and it was acknowledged that the crowd gathering at Jallianwala Bagh was not intended to throw out the British. On May 26, 1920, the committee presented its Hunter Commission Report. In it, most of its members condemned Dyer for a “misguided notion of duty”. It was determined that the assembly would not have been the product of an Indian scheme.

  • The Indian members presented a minority view of the incident. They stated that the actions of General Dyer were inhumane and impaired the reputation of the British in the country.
  • The Indian National Congress brought forth its notion even before the commission could issue its report. This viewpoint censured Dyer’s acts as brutal and stated that the establishment of military rule in Punjab was unjustified. The Hunter Commission report supported the establishment of military rule in Punjab.
  • The Hunter Report, on the other hand, saw things differently than one might anticipate. It was against the acts of Dyer but supported the military rule in Punjab.
  • As a consequence, Dyer was stripped of his command in India and transported to England. However, the rest of the information was based on the government’s official position. Mahatma Gandhi returned the Kaisar-I-Hind Gold Medal that he had received in South Africa from the British government.
  • It was also a good time for the Khilafat Grievances. The Khilafat leaders and Congress were aligned together. MK Gandhi proposed the initiation of a non-cooperation movement countrywide.

Merits and Demerits of Hunter Commission 1882

The Merits of Hunter Education Commission was that it aimed to proliferate and enhance the status of primary education in India. The medium of instruction for primary education was also prescribed to be in the mother tongue. Women and girls were encouraged to enrol in the schools. The number of candidates moving to the schools increased.

The demerits of Hunter Commission 1882 is that the changes were constrained to the level of schools. As traditional schools died out from lack of funding and enrolment, the government school system became more and more overburdened, resulting in systemic problems in primary education that affect society even today.

Hunter Commission UPSC

The Hunter Commission Report 1882 and 1919 are essential topics for the UPSC exam. The aspirants must be having a good knowledge of the topic. The aspirants are suggested to practice the previous year’s papers in order to gain insights into the types of questions asked in the exam.

Comprehensive knowledge of the topics and the subject will enlighten the candidates to solve the questions in the stipulated time frame.

Hunter Commission UPSC Questions

The questions related to Hunter Commission must be practised by the candidates to be able to gain comprehensive knowledge of the topic. The list of questions has been provided below. You can solve the questions to get proficient in the topic.

Question: Take into consideration the statements related to Hunter Education Commission. [1] The Hunter Commission 1882 was established to examine the status of education in the country. [2] It was established to check the functioning of the Central Universities in the country. [3] It put forward the suggestion of having different divisions for literary and vocational education.

Which of the following statements is correct? [A] 1 and 2 only [B] 1 only [C] 2 and 3 only [D] 1 and 3 only

Answer: (Option D) 1 and 3 only

Question: Identify the incorrect statement about the Hunter Education Commission. [A] Lord Ripon appointed the Hunter Commission [B] It put forward the suggestions that primary education should be taught in vernacular medium. [C] It recommended that there must be different divisions for secondary and literary education. [D] The Hunter Commission Report was regarded as the Magna Carta of English Education in India.

Answer: (Option D) The Hunter Commission Report was regarded as the Magna Carta of English Education in India

UPSC Articles
Foreign Travellers who Visited India Exclusive Economic Zone
Extremist Phase Sessions of Parliament
Continental Drift Theory Pardoning Power of President
44th Amendment of Indian Constitution Heads of Important Offices in India
Principles of Natural Justice Bal Gangadhar Tilak
Drainage Pattern Regional Parties in India
King Harshavardhana Famous Personalities of India and their Nicknames
Our Apps Playstore
SSC and Bank
Other Exams
GradeStack Learning Pvt. Ltd.Windsor IT Park, Tower - A, 2nd Floor, Sector 125, Noida, Uttar Pradesh 201303
Home Practice Test Series Premium