About Me


I am a published author, scholar of history and experienced educator of young people.

I was born in Kampar in the Malaysian state of Perak. I was educated in the Kampar’s Anglo Chinese School and St. Michael’s Institution in Ipoh. I received my Senior Cambridge education in Jaffna College, at Vaddukoddai, Ceylon.

I read for a History degree at University of Malaya in Singapore and finally, received my Diploma in Education there.

I then joined the Malayan Teaching Service as an Education Officer. I first taught in Anderson School, Ipoh and I was later transferred as Headmaster of what is known today as High School Port Dickson.

I helped set up the Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan in Port Dickson and the Si Rusa Lower Secondary School. After many years in Port Dickson, I was transferred to Penang as Head of Penang Free School.

After many years of distinguished service, I had an inappropriate and unhappy transfer towards the end of my career.

I retired from the Education Service on 6 September, 1987.

For some time, I was the Secretary General of the Malaysian Ceylonese Congress.

I believe that once a teacher, always a teacher. The result of this is my book on the Tamils in India, Ceylon and Malaya. This also motivate me to write this Blog and share my knowledge on history and culture of the Tamils.

I want my fellow Tamils to be proud of our race. It is particularly important for young Tamils to be aware of our heritage. We should all know, follow and respect the ethical rules of our culture and manifest this in good behaviour that can only benefit the societies in which we all live.

6 thoughts on “About Me

    Devendra Kanagalingam said:
    March 1, 2015 at 2:57 pm

    Dear Mr Visvanathan, I am glad I stumbled on this website. I was a form 1 student at the Penang Free School in 1980 when you were headmaster and I benefitted tremendously from your leadership of the school. I studies medicine in Singapore and am now an obstetrician and gynaecologist at the Singapore General Hospital. I was fascinated to hear of your book and, especially since I am a Tamil whose grandparents migrated to Malaysia from Jaffna, will be picking up a copy at the bookstore. I hope you are keeping well. Warm regards, Devendra

      rvisva responded:
      May 9, 2015 at 4:24 am

      Dear Devendra, You may be surprised to know that I remember you. I also believe I know your father well. I am happy to learn that you are doing so well. Was your father also an Obstetrician and Gynaecologist? If so, then he is the Kanagalingam with whom I attended University in Singapore. Please give him my best regards. Did you manage to find my book? I will be happy to send you a copy if not. It is also available for online purchase. Thank you for writing to me. Take care of yourself and best wishes for your future success. I am now working on another book.

    Devendra Kanagalingam said:
    May 11, 2015 at 1:52 am

    Dear Mr Visvanathan,

    It is wonderful to hear from you. Yes, my father is indeed Kanagalingam s/o Manickam and attended University of Malaya, graduating in 1958. Did you go to University with him? My father passed away in 2012 in Penang. He was very proud that we (my brother and I) went to PFS and continued to donate his old magazines to the school until his passing. My mother, Chandra Rajaratnam, studied medicine in Singapore University and graduated in 1962. She is well and lives in Penang.

    I will order your book online as I would like to get copies for relatives as well. Which website is it on? Do let me know.

    Warm regards,

    Grace Cai said:
    December 1, 2015 at 2:02 am

    Hi Mr Visvanathan, seeing how you’ve taught in Anderson Secondary, Ipoh, do you by any chance know the full name of one of the past headmasters: Mr C. F. C. Ayre? This is for research purposes and it will be great if you can recall his full name and provide me with a source, thank you!

      rvisva responded:
      January 18, 2016 at 8:20 am

      Dear Grace, I am very sorry but I cannot recollect the person you mention. Good luck with your searches!

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