Stressing on emotional integration of Vanvasis, RSS Sarsanghachalak Shri Mohan Bhagwat appealed to the countrymen to go to the Vanvasis taking it as their national duty. He was speaking at the Vanvasi Raksha Parivar Kumbha organised by Shri Hari Satsangh Samiti in Delhi on December 21 in which 40,000 people including leading saints, NGO representatives, tribals and Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and RSS karyakartas participated. An exhibition held on the occasion showcased the unique heritage, ethnic diversity, rich natural resources, socio-cultural traditions of the tribals. Tribal Artists from West Bengal presented Mahishasur Mardani while the children of Bhatnagar International School captivated the audience with the group dance performance. He said if the Vanvasis had believed that the entire nation was with them they would not have alienated from the society. “Vanvasis have truly protected the Indian culture and helping them in all respect is the responsibility of the entire society,” Shri Bhagwat added.Addressing the mammoth gathering, Dr. Mohan Rao Bhagwat emphasised on the ideal of providing protection to the tribals who are our own kith and kin. Their glorious lineage must not only be recognised and respected, but also spread throughout the country.
Ashok Singhal, Patron, VHP talked of the Vanvasis of Bharat in terms of population statistics. “A large part of the country’s population lives in the forests. Out of the grand 125 crores population, 9 crores are vanvasis who live in isolated, deep forests and villages”. Swami Satyamitranand, founder Bharat Mata Mandir gave a heart wrenching talk on the historical importance of the Vanvasis, right from the Vedic Age. He said one can see the image of Sri Ram among Vanvasis, but we never tried to see that image. Swami Anubhutanand Giri, Sadhvi Ritambhara, Swami Ramdev, Mahant Nritya Gopal Das, Dr. Pranav Pandya, Dr. Praveenbhai Togadia, Dr. Bajranglal Gupta, Smt. Sumitra Mahajan, Dr.Raman Singh, Nitin Gadkari, Amit Shah and Sushma Swaraj graced the ocasion.
SWAYAMSEVAKS CLEAN PREMISES OF GOKARNA BUS STAND
RSS swayamsevaks on January 1 cleaned the premises of historically reputed bus stand at Gokarna in Karnataka as a part of the ‘Swaccha Bharat Abhiyan’. Gokarna is one of most reputed temple town of Karnataka, where thousands of visitors arrive by buses. The sewa work by the swayamsevaks received applause by the local people.
Gokarna is a small temple town located on the western coast of India in North Kannada district. Gokarna means ‘Cow’s Ear’. It is believed that Lord Shiva emerged from the ear of a cow (Prithvi, the Mother Earth) here. Main temple and deity is Lord Shiva, who is also known as Mahabhaleshwara. This temple houses what is believed to be original image of Lord Shiva’s lingam. There are many other temples all over this small town. Gokarna is historically known as one of the seven important Hindu pilgrimage centers and is located on what was once unspoiled beach near the estuary of River Aghanashini with its palm trees and other colourful tropical fruits and flower trees.
WORLD RECORD OF LARGEST ASSEMBLY OF JANJATI ARCHERS
The Three-day National Archery Competition organised by the Akhil Bharatiya Vanvasi Kalyan Ashram for Vanvasi youths concluded in Bengaluru on December 28. The meet created world record of ‘largest assembly of tribal archers’. Speaking at the venue of competition on December 28 Union Minister of State for Sports Sarbanda Sonowal said the tribal youths have to work hard to excel in sports. He welcomed the initiative of the Vanvasi Kalyan Ashram in Vanvasi sports at national level. He assured all out support for the Vanvasi sports.
Rahul Banarjee, Olympian archer said archery is in blood of Vanvasis. The competition was inaugurated on December 26 by Union Minister for Tribal Affairs Shri Jual Oram. Shri Suhas Gopinath, the youngest CEO and entrepreneur of Bengaluru graced the session as Chief Guest. He suggested the youths to realize a dream through sincerity and honesty. A total of 231 archers from 22 State units of Kalyan Ashram participated in the competition.
SEWA BHARATI RELIEF TO THE VICTIMS
Sewa Bharati workers distributed relief material to the violence victims staying in relief camps after the violence of December 23 which claimed the lives of 78 people. So far 81 relief camps have been created and more than two lakh people have shifted there. Sewa Bharati Purbanchal provided immediate relief to the victims. The relief materials include food items, clothes and medicines. The Sewa Bharati has also planned for rehabilitation of the orphan children both boys and girls.
KALYAN ASHRAM MEGHALAYA MEETING
A three-day Chintan Baithak of Kalyan Ashram Meghalaya was organized in Shillong from December 25 to 27, 2014. The meeting was inaugurated by the Kalyan Ashram national vice president Shri Kripa Prasad Singh and Meghalaya State president Shri Rinohmo Sungoh. A total of 114 Janjati leaders attended the meeting.
Shri Rinohmo Sungoh appealed to all the janjati leaders to come ahead for community development. Smt Drimsibon Kharkongor, retired principal of a women college expressed deep concern over the backwardness of women in Khasi villages. She said the Kalyan Ashram can solve the problems of the community. She said single teacher schools are highly useful. Shri Kripa Prasad Singh and Dr. Vishvamitra discussed the working technique of the Kalyan Ashram among different janjati groups. Shri Singh said organic farming, solar energy and hydro projects along with water management for drinking and cultivation are essential for development. Kalyan Ashram Meghalaya is working for health care and educational development of Vanvasi brethren of Meghalaya.
For the past 40 years now, every evening at the Sathyavageeswara Temple, Karamana, Thruvananthapuram (Kerala, Bharat), Sekhar Anna (Shri H. Parameswaran, retired Deputy Chief Engineer, PWD, Kerala) has been taking classes for men and women, from children and senior citizens to professionals and homemakers, all of those who are interested in learning the scriptures. He keeps the classes short, at the most, half an hour or 45 minutes. He teaches two to three batches of students every day. He starts out by teaching them small and easy to understand and memorise slokas and kritis, in order to familiarise them with the intricacies of Samskritam. He goes to Sree Padmanbhaswamy temple to chant the Yajur Veda every morning along with a handful of other devotees. They consider it as an offering to the deity. Apart from this, he takes classes for women on Sundara Kandam, Devi Mahatmyam, Bhagavad Gita and so on, and on weekends, in his house, he hosts a discourse on the Yajur Veda. Says Sekar Anna: “At the end of the day, I too am only a student of the Vedas. I am currently learning the Yajur Veda under Venkatachala Ghanapadigal, an eminent Vedic scholar, one of those rarest of rare people who can recite the entire text from memory”.
Majuli is the largest river island in the world formed in the midst of the mighty river Brahmaputra, located in Jorhat district of Assam. People of Majuli fondly recall Ravi Sir’s seva there. Ravi Sir (Ravindranath Devendranath Savdekar) belongs to Chandwad in Nasik district of Maharashtra. He is the only son of Devendranath Savdekar who is a teacher. Inspired by the philosophy of Swami Vivekananda, Ravindranath participated in Vivekananda Bharat Parikrama. He completed the ‘Acharya’ training at Vivekananda Kendra, Kanyakumari in Tamilnadu. Ravindranath Savdekar left Chandvad in 2000. He served as a teacher at Doyang school for two years. He was appointed as Principal of the school to be opened at Majuli island. His school began with 53 students and two teachers in a rented house. The major difficulty he confronted was that of language and then to seek cooperation of the local people to resolve a number of problems. He was not conversant with Assamese language. Then he started learning Assamese. The similarity of words in Marathi and Assamese helped him adopt the language with speed and at ease. Now he was capable of communicating with the local people in their language. The locals were astonished to see him speak their language! In 2004 Ravi Sir entered into wedlock with Poorva from Ahmednagar. Poorva was ready to live on this Brahmaputra island. She also started teaching in the school following her spouse. Today Ravi Sir is Principal of Vivekananda Kendra School at Dibrugarh. “Had I served in Maharashtra”, Ravi Sir says, “I would have become a good teacher but then we could not do what we are doing here to bring these people into the mainstream of Indian culture”.
Smt Lekha Namboothiri (31), a native of Mavelikkara, (Kerala, Bharat) donated one of her kidneys to 35 year old Shafi Navaz, a poor Muslim hailing from Pattambi, free of cost, surpassing barriers of religion. Lekha spurned offers mounting upto Rs 15 lakhs, unmindful of her own poverty stricken background. The transplant took place in 2012. However it was not covered by media then. The matter came to light recently and Lekha was showered with praises. Courtesy: Panchaamritam