Dharmaram College, Bangalore – A Major Seminary of the CMI Congregation

Dharmaram College, a major study house of CMI Congregation, was replanted in Bangalore on 1st June, 1957. The name ‘Dharmaram’ is a combination of two Sanskrit words, dharma (virtue) and aram (garden), which together mean ‘GARDEN OF VIRTUES’. Dharmaram is dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the motto is Isabhakti Paramjnanam (Love of God is the Supreme Wisdom). Dharmaram aims at educating people who are prepared to commit themselves to the service of the Church and the world, which is accomplished through a holistic, spiritual, intellectual and cultural formation.

A Major Seminary of the CMI Congregation

The foundation stone of the Study House was laid by His Grace Thomas Pothacamury, the then Archbishop of Bangalore, on July 16, 1955. Of the many distinguished guests who were present on that auspicious occasion, the late Cardinal Antony Padiyara, the First Major Archbishop of the Syro-Malabar Church, needs special mention.

The structure completed first was a small residence and it was blessed on October 7, 1955.  Rev. Fr. Dismas Vadakkethala, who was entrusted with the construction work of the Study House in its initial stages, stayed there and supervised the work till he returned to Kerala on November 16, 1955.

 Rev. Fr. Jonas Thaliath, later Bishop of Rajkot, the visionary behind Dharmaram College, took charge of the house on November 21, 1955.  Dharmaram was his long cherished dream to its minute details, and had it not been for his untiring labour, enduring spirit, and enterprising talent, it would never have acquired the present shape. With Fr. Jonas Thaliath at the helm and assisted by Fr. Kurian Palackal and Bro. Benjamin Muricken, the construction works progressed at a faster pace. Within a period of eighteen months, West Wing III with seventy-five single rooms, Refectory and Kitchen were completed.

Saturday, June 1st 1957 will ever remain memorable in the annals of the CMI Congregation.  It was on this day that the Sacred Heart Study House founded in 1918 at Chethipuzha was shifted to Bangalore and was given the new name, Dharmaram, meaning “the Garden of Virtues and Righteousness.”  Dharmaram College was also raised to the status of a formed house, with the Rector of the seminary as its head on this very day. His Grace Thomas Pothacamury, Archbishop of Bangalore, blessed the new building and offered Mass for the community to solemnise the humble beginning of the central study house of the CMI Congregation.

 Fr. Chrysostom Ponnumpurayidam was appointed its first Rector, and he took charge on June 1, 1957.  Frs. Januarius Palathuruthy, Canisius Thekkekara, Paulinus Jeerakath, Jonas Thaliath, Lukas Vithuvattickal, Mansuetus Andumaly, John Britto Chethimattam, Eustace Thottan and Cosmos Madathil formed the pioneering staff members of Dharmaram College. This auspicious occasion was graced by the presence of Rev. Fr. Maurus Valiaparambil, Prior General, Fr. Athanasius Payappilly, General Councillor, Fr. Clemens Thottungal, Provincial of Devamatha Province and many CMI Fathers and Brothers.

         Dharmaram College was formally inaugurated on February 23, 1958.  The inauguration day was preceded by a day of adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. His Grace Msgr. J. R. Knox, the Papal Internuncio gave the inaugural address.  In his address Msgr. J. R. Knox depicted Dharmaram College as the culmination of a long dream of the Syro-Malabar Carmelite Congregation and closed his address with the wish, “Vivat, Creascat et Floreat,” meaning “May Dharmaram live, grow and flourish!”

 Dharmaram has been blooming for the last forty-five years. It has at present training facilities for about three hundred residential students.  The dream of Fr. Jonas Thaliath to make Dharmaram a centre for the Catholic education has been realized on January 6, 1976, when the Congregation for Catholic Education constituted a Faculty of Theology at Dharmaram.

By its decree of December 8, 1983, Antiquissima Indorum, the Congregation for the Catholic Education created the Faculty of Philosophy at Dharmaram Pontifical Institute on March 25, 1984, and established in perpetuity the existing Faculty of Theology and thus granted the institute the status of an Athenaeum which is known as Dharmaram Vidya Kshetram, meaning the temple (kshetram) of wisdom (vidya) in the garden (aram) of virtues (dharma). In the context of the ever increasing importance of specialization and research in Oriental Canon Law, a new Institute was erected at Dharmaram Vidya Kshetram by the Congregation for Catholic Education, on March 29, 1999.

 Realizing the call for integral development of the youth, Dharmaram extended and expanded its activities into many other fields. To nurture a creative interest in nature among students and as a source of income to meet the day-to-day expenses of Dharmaram College, stretches of farmland were purchased near Kengeri, one in 1962 and the other in 1964 to develop farms. Awakened by the realities of interdisciplinary approach at the intellectual level, Christ College was started on July 15, 1969. With fond hope of enhancing experience in the pastoral apostolate of the students undergoing training at Dharmaram, a parish of the Syro-Malabar faithful has been established at Dharmaram in 1983. To meet the felt needs of the people around us, Dharmaram has taken initiative to open two schools, one with Kannada and the other with English as the medium of instruction in June 1984.

 The development of Dharmaram into a multi-faceted educational institution, later, paved the way for a separate residence for some of the teaching staff.  It was envisaged that this residence would improve the quality of various apostolates at Dharmaram College, especially the religious and intellectual training of the students. The foundation stone for the residence, Chavara Bhavan, was laid by Rev. Fr. Thomas Kadankavil, the then Rector, Dharmaram College on January 22, 1994.  Rev. Fr. Thomas Mampra, the then Prior General blessed the Chavara Bhavan on December8,1994.

 The dream of our bygone generation has found concrete expression in course of time through the establishment, growth, and the significant contributions of Dharmaram to the Church, the nation and the world at large.

Memorable Events and Dates


Dec. 08 The blessing of the foundation stone by His Eminence Card. Tisserant


March 23 Purchase of site for Dharmaram College in Bangalore

July 16 Laying of the foundation stone by His Grace Thomas Pothacamury

Oct 07 Completion of first residential unit and its blessing by Fr. Dismas Vadakkethala


April Completion of construction work of WW III, Refectory and Kitchen

June 01 Blessing of the new building by his Grace Thomas Pothacamury

Fr. Chrysostom Ponnempurayidom appointed Rector of Dharmaram College

Dharmaram College erected as a formed house


Feb. 23 Inauguration of Dharmaram by His Grace Msgr. J. R. Knox, Apostolic Internuncio, Delhi

Sept. 06 Completion of the furnishing of the third living block and its blessing by Fr. Chrysostom Ponnempuryidom, Rector


Jan. 21 Fr. Canisius Thekkekara appointed Rector of Dharmaram College

April Completion of the first phase of Press Block

Sept. 24 Visit of His Eminence Cardinal Agaginian, Prefect of the Sacred Congregation for Propagation of Faith

Dec. 15 The mortal remains of Joseph Kariati, Archbishop of Cranganore who died at Goa on Sept. 9, 1786, was brought to Dharmaram on its way to Kerala


Feb. Purchase of farmland at Kengeri for the proposed estate (Devadan)

May 21 Death of Rev. Fr. Hyacinth Kunnumkal

June 5 Appointment of Fr. Januarius Palathuruthy as Mission Superior of the new Mission Region (Chanda) entrusted to the CMI Congregation


Jan. 06 Re-appointment of Fr. Canisius Thekkekara as Rector of Dharmaram College


Dec. 01 Ordination of 45 of our deacons at Bombay during international Eucharisdc Congress attended by His Holiness Pope Paul VI


Jan. 10. Fr. Canisius Thekkekara, Rector, elected as Prior General, of CMI Congregation

Jan. 24 Fr. Jonas Thaliath appointed as Rector and Fr. Chrysostom Ponnempuryidom as Vice-Rector of Dharmaram College


May 21 Visit of Mr. Nijalingappa, the Chief Minister of Mysore (Kanataka)

May 22 Sudden demise of Fr. Roger Kattarath in a railway accident at Kuppam, on his way to Kerala

Sep. 01 Visit of His Eminence Cardinal Valerain Gracias of Bombay


Sept 24 The foundation stone of Christ College was laid by His Excellency Joseph Caprio, Apostolic Pronuncio to India.

June 9 Commencement of construction of Christ College


Jan 03 Visit of Sri. V. V. Giri, the Vice-President of India

Jan 15 Fr. Theophane Kanjooparambil appointed Rector of Dharmaram College

May 14 Visit of His Eminence Cardinal Joseph Parekattil, Archbishop of Ernakulam

May 15-25 Church in India Seminar at Dharmaram College

June 24 Sudden demise of Fr. Mansuetus Andumaly, former Professor of Philosophy at Chethipuzha

July 15 Blessing of Christ College by Fr. Theophane Kanjooparambil, Rector


Oct 23 Visit of Msgr. Salvatore Corrofalo, Rector of Propaganda College, Rome


Jan 03 Inauguration of CSWR

Feb 02 Visit of His Excellency Sri. Dharmaveera, the Governor of Mysore

Aug 08 Assignment of a separate block for our students studying at Christ College


Jan 17 Fr. John Britto Chethimattam appointed Rector of Dharmaram College

July 03 Foundation stone laid for Dharmaram College Chapel

Visit of Fr. Carriers S.J., Rector, Gregorian University, Rome


June Inauguration of the Publication of an International Philosophical Quarterly, Journal of Dharma

June 3 Fr. Claudius Alappat passed away at II p.m.


March 10 Consecration of Dharmaram Chapel by His Eminence Joseph Cardinal Parekattil

April 22 Fr. Mathias Mundadan took charge as Rector of Dhamaram College


June 2 Blessing of the Parlour and Administrative Block by Fr. Liguori Mundackal, General Councillor

July 3 Inauguration of Dharmaram Pontifical Institute of Theology and Philosophy by His Eminence Joseph Cardinal Parekattil


Jan 2 Fr. Thomas Aykara, staff member, is elected Prior General

March 1 Visit of His Eminence Cardinal Pironio and Internuncio His Grace Sereno


Jan 31 Visit of Mother Theresa


Jan 3 Celebration of the 110th death Anniversary of the Servant of God Kuriakose Elias Chavara

Jan 10 Visit of His Eminence Cardinal W. Rubin, Prefect of the Congregation for Oriental Churches

Jan 25 Bro. Mathew Karikunnel MCBS, a first year theology student expired

March 11 Fr. Justin Koyipuram appointed Rector of Dharmaram College

May 22 General Synaxis of the CMI Congregation to revise the Constitution began at Dharmaram College

July 1 Inauguration of the Silver Jubilee of Dharmaram College by Fr. Thomas Aykara, Prior General

Nov 7 Bp. Jonas Thaliath expired of a heart attack at Rajkot


Jan 2 150th Jubilee celebration of the CMI Congregation

Jan 3 Inauguration of the School of Printing by Fr. Thomas Aykara, Prior General

July 4 Conclusion of the Silver Jubilee celebration of Dharmaram. His Excellency Govind Narayan the Governor of Karnataka was the chief guest and R. Gundu Rao, the Chief Minister was the President. Msgr. F. Marchisano, the Delegate from Rome, gave the Jubilee Address. Representative of the Congregation for Catholic Education and Msgr. Cerutti of the same Congregation graced the occasion

Oct 25 Inauguration of 10 ‘Janatha Houses’ constructed by Dharmaram with Government aid on the Bangalore Mysore road, near Devadan Farm

Nov 7 First Death Anniversary of Bp. Jonas Thaliath observed with solemn Requiem Mass. A portrait of Bp. Jonas Thaliath unveiled in the auditorium

Nov 26 Inauguration of the Housing Colony near St. Mary’s Farm constructed by Dharmaram Association for Social Service (DASS) with aid from the Government


Feb 27 Fr. Prior General constituted a nine-member committee for the evaluation of Dharmaram

March 19 Solemn inauguration of the new Syro-Malabar Parish (St. Thomas Parish) at Dharmaram by Archbishop Arokyaswamy

June 1 Inauguration of Christ Vidyalaya


Mat 26 Fr. Thomas Mampra appointed Rector of Dhamiaram College

June 1 Inauguration of Christ School


Feb 12 Inauguration of Christ College Library Block

May 1 Fr. Thomas Mampra re-appointed Rector of Dharmaram College

Aug 4-7 National Seminar on “Mission in India Today”


April 16 Fr. John Kallikuzhuppil, who met with an accident on the previous day, died


June 15 Blessing of the Theology Faculty Block by Archbishop Alphonsus Mathias in the new DVK. Campus


Jan 30 The newly constructed Administrative block of DVK was inaugurated by Cardinal Arinze, the President of the Papal Commission for NonChristian Religions

Feb 18 The multipurpose hall of St. Thomas Parish was blessed by Bp. Joseph Kundukulam

April 3 Fr. Thomas Mampra, Rector, elected Prior General of the CMI Congregation

April 25 Fr. Mani Giles Pothanamuzhy appointed Rector of Dharmaram College

Aug 6 Bishop Paulinus Jeerakath died in St. John’s Medical College Hospital, Bangalore

Aug 8 Body of the late Bp. Paulinus Jeerakath was brought to the Dharmaram Chapel, His Eminence Cardinal Antony Padiyara led the concelebrated liturgy


July 3 ‘New Block’ of Christ College was inaugurated

July 16 Blessing of the new block of Dhamiaram School of Printing

Jan 20 Blessing of DVK PG Block by His Eminence Cardinal Antony Padiyara

June 15 DVK Cafeteria blessed by Rev. Fr. Thomas Mampra, Prior General


May 16 Fr. Thomas Kadankavil took charge as Rector of Dharmaram College

June 1 Newly constructed Kannada Medium School (Christha Vidyalaya) blessed by Fr. Thomas Kadankavil, Rector

Aug 14 Formal inauguration of Christha Vidyalaya by Sri. Veerappa Moily, Chief Minister of Karnataka

Aug 17-18 International Seminar on ‘The Future of Interreligious Dialogue” inaugurated by the Governor of Karnataka, Sri Kursheed Alam Khan

Sep 9 Christ School Canteen blessed by Fr. Thomas Mampra, Prior General

Nov 7 Newly constructed building of the Faculty of Philosophy was blessed by Msgr. Michael, the resident ofWeltmissio, Archdiocese of Cologne


Jan 22 Laying of the foundation stone of Chavara Bhavan

Sep 22 Blessing of PG Block of Christ College by Rev. Fr. Thomas Kadankavil, Rector

Dec 8 Blessing of Chavara Bhavan by Rev. Fr. Thomas Mampra, Prior General


Jan 5 Sudden demise of Rev. Fr. Liguori Mundackal in a traffic accident at Aluva

Jan 16 Christ College celebrated its Silver Jubilee with the Honourable Chief Minister of Karnataka, Sri. H. D. Deve Gowda, as chief guest


Jan 3 Ordination of 42 deacons at Mannanam on the occasion of 125th death anniversary of Blessed Kuriaskose Elias Chavara

May 26 Fr. Domitian Manickathan took charge as Rector of Dharmaram College

July 14 Blessing of Blessed Kuriakose Elias Chapel at Egipura

Oct 2 Bro. Chacko lrupathinalilchira, doing his third year degree at Christ College, died in a scooter accident

Dec 18 Fr. Mani Giles, former Rector of Dharmaram College, the new Bishop of Mananthavady


Jan 12 Blessing of Blessed Alphonsa Centre, a new chapel in the City Ward


Feb 15 Blessing of Great Jubilee Memorial St. Thomas Parish Church by Mar Varkey Vithayathil, the Apostolic Administrator of the Syro-Malabar Church

May 8 Fr. Avarachan Peenickaparambil died in Manipal Hospital, Bangalore

May 9 Bro. Joshy Kocherry, a second year theology student expired

Aug 12 Second Block of Christ College was blessed by Fr. Domitian Manickathan, Rector, Dharmaram College

Sep 27 Formal Erecdon of Syro-Malabar parishes at Bommanahalli, Egipura, Anapalayam, and Lingarajapuram

Nov 23 The first Apostolic Visitation of Dharmaram College and DVK started under the presidentship of Mar Varkey Vithayathil, Apostolic Administrator of Syro-Malabar Church


Jan 1 Establishment of Dharmaram College, DVK, and Christ College and Schools Administrative Bodies

May 21 Fr. Benjamin Kottooran, who was Spiritual Director in Dharmaram College for 23 years, expired

May 26 Fr. Sebastian Poonolly took charge as Rector of Dharmaram College

June 6 St. Thomas Parish was raised to the status of a Forane Church

Formal erection of Bl. Alphonsa Church, Bangalore City, as an independent Syro-Malabar Parish

June 14 Inauguration of the Institute of Oriental Canon Law in DVK by Mar Varkey Vithayathil, Apostolic Administrator, Syro-Malabar Church

July 20 Fr. Mathew Bassus Manjakunnel expired

Aug 2 Blessing of new Adhyayana (DVK Residence for Sisters) building


March 10 Silver Jubilee of the construction of Dharmaram Chapel was celebrated with a Concelebrated Mass

March 29 Rev. Br. George Mundankavil of Samanvaya expired in an accident at Bhopal

June 26 Archbishop Alan De Lastic of Delhi Visited Dharmaram College

Aug 16 Mar Varkey Vithayathil, Major Archbishop, visited Dharmaram College and inaugurated the national seminar on Canon Law in DVK

Sep 20 National Assembly of Kristu Jayanthi 2000 began in Dharmaram College


Aug 20 Most Rev. Edwin Regan, Bishop of Wrexham U. K. visited Dharmaram College

Nov 4 Foundation Stone of Christ Junior College was laid by Rev. Fr. Sebastian Poonoly, Rector, Dharmaram College

Feb 22 Newly constructed bank building in DVK compound was blessed by Archbishop Ignatius Pinto, Bangalore and an extension counter of the Catholic Syrian Bank was inaugurated

April 6 Rev. Fr. Antony Kariyil was elected Prior General of the CMI Congregation.

May 1 Rev. Fr. James Narithookil appointed Rector of Dharmaram College

July 3 The newly constructed DVK Library was inaugurated by Archbishop Ignatius Pinto


Feb. 16 Blessing of Hongasandra Holy Family Church

The Golden Jubilee of Mar Emmanuel Pothanamuzhy and Rev. Fr. Mathias Mundadan was

celebrated in Dharmaram College

April 6 Bp. Mar Emmanuel Pothanamkuzhy expired with cancer

April 24 National Meeting of the CRI began in Dharmaram Campus

May 14 Inauguration of a branch of the South Indian Bank at Christ College by Fr. Prior General

Aug 7 Visit of His grace Rt. Rev. Dr. Joseph Pittau S. J., and Fr. Albin Graus, the secretary and the officer respectively of the Congregation for Catholic Education


October 28 Inauguration of Golden Jubilee Year of Dharmaram  by His Grace Bernard Moras, Archbishop of Bangalore.


June 12-13 Alumni Gathering at Dharmaram.

June 13-15 National Seminar on Formation Through Integral Education.Inaugurated by His Grace Bernard Moras, Archbishop of Bangalore and Key Note address by Mar Joseph Powathil, Archbishop Emeritus of Changanassery.

Click here for the Official site of Dharmaram College


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