St. Kuriakose Elias Chavara Chair 

St. Kuriakose Elias Chavara Chair has been constituted in the Mahatma Gandhi University in the year 2015 on the special occasion of the canonization of blessed Kuriakose Elias Chavara. The chair has been established to commemorate the great services and contributors of St. Kuriakose Elias Chavara to the field of education in Kerala during the 19th century. It is a tribute to the great man, who with limited opportunities had mastered six languages, improvised a press for printing and publishing.

Dr. C.V. Ananda Bose I.A.S. Chairman , Chavara Chair

During the 19th century, Kerala was mired in the mud of colonial rule and morbid age old customs. At this time, there arose a visionary from Kainakary with a vision for secular education and social awakening. This triggered a renaissance from the Southern tip of the Indian Peninsula.

In 1846, he started a Sanskrit School at Mannanam and insisted to have schools, Pallikkoodams, attached to the places of worship. This initiated an epoch-making drive in the form of a chain of schools that brought about an integration of the untouchables and the unapproachable of the times which harbingered the clarion call for a casteless society. he championed the cause of women empowerment by instituting the first boarding school at Koonammavu, Educantat. 

He initiated a model for social reforms like contributing a handful of rice, pidiyari, and setting apart a coconut tree, kettuthengu, and its yields for social cause.

In 1846, he endured immense hardships in his venture to establish the 3rd Printing Press in Kerala, from which came out the first daily news paper in Malayalam, Nasrani Deepika, besides several other publications. He authored the first long lyrical poem, The Martyrdom of Anastasia, the first dramatic plays in Malayalam in the pastoral (shepherd) genre or Eclogues of Italy, the first biography and model chronicles. The Testament of a Good Father, Chavarul, which is a guideline for a stable family life, and other major literary works such as Atmanuthapam and Marana veetil padunna paana.