Phalgun 18 Vik Samvat 2066. Yugabda 5111: March 1, 2010

1 FESTIVALS: Varsha Pratipada, Chaitra Shukla 1 (March 16 this year) marks the beginning of the New Year, for Hindus. Also known as Gudhi Padwa, Sanvsar Padwo, , Ugadi, Cheti Chand; it is one of the most auspicious day ( Muhurta ).On this very day Lord Brahma created the Universe, Rama returned back to Ayodhya and Shalivahana defeated Shakas. Many families hoist a festive staff, known as Gudhi ( Brahmadhwaj ) in balconies and terraces. People decorate the houses, visit temples with new clothes and greet fellowmen for the New Year.
It is also important for Swayamsevaks as it is the birth anniversary of Pu. Dr.Hedgewar. These days, many cities and towns take out huge processions greeting Surya Bhagwan and exhibit colourful tableaus, dances to celebrate new year in a traditional Hindu way.
Samvad team wishes a happy and prosperous new year - Yugabda 5112 (Shobhana nam Samvatsar) to all readers, families & well wishers.
2. NANAJI DESHMUKH PASSES AWAY: Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh veteran and former Rajya Sabha member Nanaji Deshmukh passed away at a private hospital in Chitrakoot on February 27. He was 94 and was unwell for some time due to age-related ailments. He had refused to be taken to Delhi for treatment. A Padma Vibhushan awardee, Deshmukh had donated his body for medical research.
Born at Kadoli in Maharashtra’s Parbhani district on October 11, 1916, Nanaji came in contact with Sangh and vowed to become pracharak at the time of Dr.Hedgewar’s death. He took up various responcibilities in Sangh, Rashtradharm Prakashan and later Jana Sangh. He founded Deendayal Research Institute and was credited for exemplary work in the field of education, health and rural self-reliance. He was also instrumental in carrying out social restructuring programme in over 500 villages of UP and MP. When Jai Prakash Narayan gave the call for total revolution, he responded by giving total support to this movement.
He had also established Chitrakoot Gramodya Vishwavidyalaya in Chitrakoot - Bharat’s first rural university - and was its first Chancellor. He was nominated to Rajya Sabha in 1999 in recognition of his services to the nation.
Shri Mohan Bhagwat , RSS Sarsanghchalak described Nanaji’s social and political life with ‘Kamalpatra’ ( lotus leaf ) and said that it will instill patriotism and spirit of selfless service in coming generations. To follow Nanaji’s life and ideals will be a fitting tribute to him, he said.
The body of Nanaji was flown to Delhi on February 28 and kept in the RSS office Keshavkunj and at the office of DRI. Prominent among those who paid tributes were former President APJ Abdul Kalam, LK Advani, Deputy Speaker of Lok Sabha Karia Munda, Leader of Opposition ushma Swaraj, Arun Jaitley, BJP president Nitin Gadkari, Chief Ministers of BJP ruled states and hundereds of karyakartas. Later it was handed over to the anatomy dept. of All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Delhi as per his wishes.
3. DR. SRIPATI SASTRY IS NO MORE: Senior RSS ideologue and history scholar Dr. Sripati Sastry (74) died of a heart attack at his Pune residence on February 27.
Born at Harihar in Mysore in 1935, Sastry came in contact with the RSS during school days. At 21, he became secretary of the Sangh’s Mysore city unit. A gold medalist in MA from Mysore University, he completed his doctoral studies from the University of Pune in 1961 and later joined as a Professor.
Fluent in many languages including Kannada, Marathi, English and Hindi, Sastry was an acclaimed orator. His speech at a 1983 seminar in Pune’s Papal Seminary at De Nobili College was widely acclaimed and was published as a book on the RSS’ viewpoint on Bharatiya Christians.
Dr.Sastry held various Sangh responcibilities sucha as Maharashtra Prant Karyavaha and Akhil Bharatiya sah bauddhik Pramukh. He traveled to countries like Kenya, South Africa, UK and Singapore for HSS functions.
4. MARTYR CAPTAIN ALSO SACRIFICED LUCRATIVE CAREER: Captain Devendra Singh fell to militants’ bullets in Sopore on February 23. His passion for serving the country remained the guiding force throughout his short life.
After completing his computer engineering from IIIT Allahabad and five semesters of MBA from GLA Institute, Davendra was selected in the Army in 2007. His first attempt to join Bharatiya Army failed but his second attempt was successful.
With only three months remaining for his degree, he was placed in a very good job through campus interview but instead chose a career with the Indian Army. In December 2007, he was selected in the Signal Corps of Indian Army. During his two-year posting he was selected for the commando course.
5. LAKHS OF KERALITES GREET THE NEW SARSANGHCHALAK AT KOLLAM: The 40-acre Ashramam Maidan in Kollam city on February 24 evening became a picture of Kerala’s Hindu might and patriotic spirit with over 1,00,000 disciplined RSS volunteers lining up in full uniform (purna ganavesh) to salute Sarsanghchalak Shri Mohan Bhagwat at the Prant Sanghik.
The event proved to be the declaration of resoluteness of Kerala’s Hindu mind to fight all cultural and political degradations and to work selflessly for the welfare of humanity and uphold forever the spirit of Hindutva.
Addressing the meet, the RSS chief, who was on his first visit to Kerala after becoming the Sarsanghchalak, reminded the swayamsevaks and Sangh supporters that the problems of the country could be solved only through the selfless power of Hindutva. “Only Bharat, with its basic philosophy of Hindutva, can show the right path to the entire world”, he said.
Shri Bhagwat slammed all kinds of invasions – in agriculture in the form of Bt seeds, cultural amalgamations in the form of westernisation of lifestyles and economy – saying that Bharat should understand its very basic strength of oneness that Hindutva has advocated “Hindutva is universal philosophy, it is modern. Bharat has to move ahead on the basis of Hindutva”, he said.
6. HUA APPOINTS A NEW PRESIDENT: A new Board of Directors, Hindu University of America (HUA) met on February 20-21st in its Orlando, Florida campus to discuss the future of HUA.The new Board consisting of top academicians & researchers in various fields appointed Dr H R Nagendra, a Ph D in Mechanical Engineering, a former NASA Scientist, a Consultant to Harvard University, and currently the Vice Chancellor of the most prestigious Yoga University, S-VYASA in Bangalore, Bharat as the new President of HUA. At the end of the board meeting, was a donation of one million dollars to the HUA Endowment Fund by an anonymous benefactor. 7. NEVADA'S CAPITAL CARSON CITY IN USA REVERBERATES WITH SANSKRIT MANTRAS: Rajan Zed, who is the president of Universal Society of Hinduism, recited from Rig-Veda besides lines from Upanishads and Bhagavad-Gita before Carson City Board of Supervisors on February 18. He started and ended the prayer with "Om", the mystical syllable containing the universe, which in Hinduism is used to introduce and conclude religious work.
Carson City, spread out in about 153 square miles of area, was founded in 1858.
8. TAMIL TEMPLE CONSECRATED IN MYANMAR: Tamils in Myanmar consecrated a renovated Perumaal temple in Yangon on January 28. Several thousand Tamils participated in the ceremonies. A 13th century Tamil inscription in Myanmar records that a Perumaal temple patronized by Tamils existed at the earlier capital at Pagan.
The temple for Kalyaana Vengkadeasap Perumaal (Thirumaal or Vishnu in his form found at Thiruppathi), accompanied by Alarmeal Mangkai (the lady on the flower: Thirumakal or Lakshmi), is situated 6 miles from Yangon at a place called Thirukkampai, which is known as Little Tamil Nadu. Seven Paddaachchaariyaars, who came from Tamil Nadu performed the ceremonies.
9. MURDERED SIKH YOUTHS ARE MARTYRS: Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh Sarkaryavah Shri Suresh Joshi has, on February 23, strongly condemned the most cruel and heinous murder of Sikh youths by Pakistani Taliban for their refusal to convert to Islam terming it a ghastly crime by the Jehadi elements in Pakistan. Pointing out that the Hindus and Sikhs of Pakistan have been the targets of Jehadi terror for last several years, he has that the Sikhs living in FATA region have been subjected to Jaziya religious tax and houses and properties of hundreds of them were illegally confiscated by the Islamist hordes last year.
They were pressurized into giving up their religion and embrace Islam. True to their tradition the Sikh brethren refused to succumb to Jehadi terror and followed in the footsteps of great Sikh Gurus like Guru Teg Bahadur and have become martyrs in the cause of Dharma thus setting up shining example through their sacrifies.
Shri Suresh Joshi offered heartfelt condolences to the family members of the murdered youths alongwith millions of our countrymen. Shri Joshi further demanded from the Union Government must give must give utmost priority to the protection of Sikhs and Hindus living in that country and put necessary pressure on the Pakistan Government to ensure safe release of the kidnapped Sikh youths from the Islamists.
10. RASHTRARISHI SRI GURUJI: (Rashtrarishi Shri Guruji Shatabdi Visheshank, Publishers: Swadesh-Bhopal Group of Newspaper, Shri Radhika Prakashan Pvt. Ltd., Swadesh Bahvan, 26-A Press Complex,Maharana Pratap Nagar, Bhopal-426 011, Total pages 654, Price- Rs 1,500/- Price for educational institutions and libraries, Rs 1,100/-.)
SWADESH, a leading newspaper group of Madhya Pradesh has brought out an excellent and comprehensive commemorative volume on Sri Madhavrao Sadashivrao Golwalkar, popularly known as Sri Guruji-the second Sarsanghachalak of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) on his birth centenary.
The volume, highlights the philosophy, life and achievements of this legendary leader. It not only touches all the aspects of Shri Guruji’s life and mission, but also contains all shreds of thoughts of Shri Guruji. The material incorporated in this volume has a variety of information for the swayamsevaks, its admirers, for its critics, and others. The volume contains thoughts of Shri Guruji in his own words expressed from time to time and also includes essays on him by various personalities who were in close contact with him in RSS and in other social and national fields.
11. THE DEFENCE RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT ORGANISATION (DRDO) will develop nuclear, biological and chemical defence systems to tackle the growing threats of terrorism and low-intensity conflicts.
"DRDO now has very focused pro- grammes on technologies for low-inten- sity conflicts, which includes NBC defence systems," DRDO chief VK Saraswat said in New Delhi on 21 Feb.
He added the organisation would adopt a `focused' approach and develop nuclear, biological and chemical (NBC) defence and soldier-centric technologies and systems. The NBC is aimed at pro- tecting the Bharatiya soldier from nuclear, biological and chemical warfare. Besides, the DRDO would adapt technologies for coastal surveillance in the wake of the Mumbai terror attacks.
12. RUPEE TO GET UNIQUE SYMBOL IN 2010-2011: The Bharatiya rupee will this fiscal join the elite league of global currencies like US dollar, British Pound and Euro that have their unique symbols, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said in his budget speech on February 26.
"With this, Bharatiya rupee will join the select club of currencies such as the US Dollar, British Pound Sterling, Euro and Japanese Yen that have a clear distinguishing identity," he said.
While these foreign currencies have their own unique symbols, other than their abbreviations like USD and GBP, Rupee is only referred to by the abbreviation 'Rs'. Moreover, the same abbreviated forms are also in neighbouring countries like Pakistan, Nepal and Sri Lanka rupee.
13. SHISHU NIKETAN IN MAURITIUS: Situated in the Eastern Region of Mauritius, the new Shishu Niketan under the aegis of Keshva Sristhti International (Mauritius) Ltd saw its dawn in January 2010.
This is the first Shishu Niketan based on Integrated Education System guided by Vidya Bharati and other associates in education filed.
On the auspicious day of Vasant Panchami, January 20, 2010, the official inauguration ceremony was performed by Hon. Anil Kumar Bachoo, Minister of Public Infrastructure and Land Transport and Shipping. Hon. Dharambeer Gokhool, Minister of Industry, Science and Research and Dr. Hon. Rajendra Mungur, Junior Minister (Parliamentary Private Secretary) as well as the Director the Ministry of Education and the Head of ECCEA also attended the ceremony.
Among the guests present were Shri Raghunath Deeal, Sanghchalak of Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh (HSS) Mauritius, Shri Rajendra Arun, chairman of the Ramayan Centre and others.
14. ARIHANT TO BE ARMED WITH BALLISTIC MISSILES: The man steering Bharat’s highly classified nuclear-powered submarine programme has acknowledged for the first time that the warship will be armed with ballistic missiles.
Vice-Admiral D.P.S. Varma (retd), Director General, Advanced Technology Vehicle (ATV) project, told “The K-15 missile, a closely guarded DRDO secret, is capable of delivering a nuclear warhead up to 700 km. With 12 ballistic missiles in its arsenal, the Arihant will complete the sea-leg of Bharat’s nuclear triad and give it enduring nuclear strike and counter-strike capabilities. Bharat can carry out nuclear strikes with fighter planes and land-launched missiles.”
15. BHARATIYA-ORIGIN WOMAN IS LEADER OF OPPOSITION IN TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO: Bharatiya-origin Kamla Persad-Bissessar has become the first woman Leader of the Opposition in the Trinidad and Tobago parliament, ousting former premier Basdeo Panday from the post.
Kamla was administered the oath of office on Feb 26 by President George Maxwell Richards at the president's house amidst loud cheers from the seven MPs, who supported her to oust incumbent Basdeo Panday.
Panday had been Leader of the Opposition for almost 34 years, minus the six years he was prime minister. Kamla has visited Bharat on several occasions, attending the Pravasi Bharatiya conference in Hyderabad in 2006 and Commonwealth Parliamentary Association meetings.
16. NRI WINS UN GREEN PRIZE: A portable light that can be recharged by pedaling for 20 minutes and developed for use in areas not wired for electricity, has won a Canadian of Bharatiya origin the prestigious Sasakawa Prize of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
The device has been developed by Nuru Design (Nuru means light in Swahili), headed by social entrepreneur Sameer Hajee, a Canadian national with roots in Bharat and Kenya.
Speaking from Bali where he received the award, Hajee said a pilot project was already in place in Madhya Pradesh and Orissa and he expected the units to be rolled out by this summer with 300,000 units in place by the end of the year.
The device, called the Nuru light, is essentially a lighting system that can be recharged by a pedal generator — the Nuru POWERCycle.
17. MF HUSAIN SHOULD APOLOGISE: BHAGWAT: Painter MF Husain should tender apologies for hurting the sentiments of Bharatiyas (for his paintings depicting Hindu gods obscenely), RSS Sarsanghachalak Mohan Bhagwat said. Stating that freedom of expression was not limitless in a democracy, he said nobody had the right to hurt others’ sentiments. “You should respect the sentiments of Bharatiyas if you are a Bharatiya. One should not hurt the sentiments of other sections,” Bhagwat said.
18. TIHAR RAISES BAR FOR WOMEN, GETS ISO STAMP: Central Jail 6 at Tihar, Delhi which is home to over 470 women inmates, has been awarded the ISO-9001 certification for maintaining international standards in management of female prisoners.
After venturing into making designer wear in jail, about 70 women prisoners will be part of an Italian lace manufacturing unit set up in the jail in collaboration with FICCI.
The certification agency for ISO inspected the prison several times since December 2009 and appreciated the quality of food served to prisoners, living conditions like television sets in all barracks, a creche for children under six years who are in jail with their mothers, a vocational centre where inmates are trained in tailoring, embroidery, making pickles and papad, dhoop and agarbattis, candles and a newly opened beautician centre run by Habibs.
"The SSTQC certification came from the Department of Information Technology, government of Bharat on February 15 this year and will be valid for a period of three years. This is the first time that an entire jail has been awarded an ISO certification in the country," said Sunil Kumar Gupta, law officer, Delhi Prisons.
19. CPM SUSPENDS MAYOR FOR ATTENDING RSS FUNCTION: The CPI(M) on Feb 25 suspended N Padmalochanan, Mayor of Kollam Municipal Corporation in Kerala, for participating in a programme organised by RSS on Feb 21. Padmalochanan became the second party victim of CPI(M) intolerance towards Sangh Parivar in a year. In January, 2009, the CPI(M) had suspended AP Abdullakutty, when he was party MP from Kannur, for praising the development model set by Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi.
20. SHRI VISHWA NIKETAN: Visitors: Shri Ramesh Bharadwaj & family - Denmark, Dr.Rajesh Bhatia , Dr.Bhishma Agnihotri USA. Pravas : Dr.Shankar Tatwawadi, Samyojak Vishwa Vibhag will be in Bharat for ABPS baithak, Shri. Ravikumar – sah samyojak will visit HongKong, Malaysia and Singapore.
21. FOOD FOR THOUGHT: To action alone have you a right and never at all to its fruits; let not the fruits of action be your motive; neither let there be in you any attachment to inaction.- Bhagwad Gita 2.47
Achyut Railkar
SHIVAJI Jayanti is celebrated all over Bharat, especially in Maharashtra with fervour on February 19. According to lunar calendar, he was born on Falgun Vadya Tritiya of Shaka year 1551 (this year it falls on March 3, 2010). His place of birth was Shivaneri Fort near Junnar of Pune district. He was named Shivaji after the goddess Shivai to whom his mother Jijabai had prayed for a son.
Chhatrapati Shivaji started his career in 1644 just at the age of 14 and captured many forts from the hands of Adilshah and Mughals. He was energetic and enthusiastic and wasted no time in setting off on a path of freedom and glory. He made use of ganimi kava (guerrilla warfare) in the hilly terrain of Sahyadri and many innovative tactics including hit and run skillfully for the purpose of the foundation of swarajya (independence).
Shri Nanaji Deshmukh known for his work on rural development of villages in Madhyapradesh. His work based at Chitrakoot was model in the rural development field and regarded as "a complete laboratory of rural development". He was the founder of 'Deendayal Research institute' at Arogyadham parisar of Chitrakoot, Satna District, Madhyapradesh.Chitrakoot Project is an integrated and holistic model for the development of rural Bharat, based on the principles outlines in Pt. Deendayal Upadhyaya's Integral Humanism to create a society based on the complimentarity of the family, primary school and the local population. The Chitrakoot Project is a self-reliance campaign that was launched on 26th January 2002 and will cover 500 villages around Chitrakoot in 2 phases. The 80 villages taken up in the 1st phase will be self-reliant by 15th August 2005, and the remaining villages will achieve self-reliance by 26th January 2009. The Campaign has also been started in the villages covered by the Institute in Gonda and Beed districts. The self-reliance campaign covers all aspects of individual, family and societal life of the villagers. The key to the campaign is the concept of Samaj Shilpi Dampati (SSD), 'graduate' couples that lives within the villages itself, and are responsible for motivating and guiding a cluster of 5 villages.
Dr. Abdul Kalam on Nanaji Deshmukh and his works : "I recently visited Chitrakoot in Madhya Pradesh, where I met Shri Nanaji Deshmukh, 90+ and his team belonging to the Deendayal Research Institute (DRI). The DRI is a unique institution developing and implementing a village development system, which is most suited for Bharat. As a part of integrated rural development, villagers are engaged in water harvesting; effectively using it for cultivation of food grains, medicinal and aromatic and horticulture cultivation. They are transforming herbs into herbal products and marketing them. Apart from all these development activities, the institute is facilitating a cohesive conflict free society. As a result of this, eighty villages around Chitrakoot are almost litigation free. Villagers have unanimously decided that no dispute will find its way to court. Differences will be sorted out amicably in the village itself. The reason given by Nana Deshmukhji is that if the people fight among each other they will have no time for development. This is also true in the life of a nation in every political system. The work of the DRI has enabled the generation of employment for a large number of farmers in the Chitrakoot region. During my visit, I went to a small village called Patni where the villagers talked to me about the progress of their village and their problems. Many women said they have to send their children long distances for studying beyond the 10th Class. They requested up-gradation of the school to the plus 2 level. They also felt the need for a road which would connect multiple villages. The then Chief Minister readily agreed and announced in the meeting itself, that school upgradation and the provision of roads would be implemented immediately. I am sure that would add to the happiness of many village farmers. The DRI understands that people's power is very potent. Social advancement and prosperity are possible only by injecting the spirit of self-reliance and excellence in the younger generation. Using this principle the DRI has plans to develop a hundred clusters of villages having approximately five villages each around Chitrakoot, based on the experience of 80 villages in 16 clusters. All these have been accomplished through the DRIs "samajshilpi dampati" a new concept of counseling and intervention promoted by the DRI as a well conceived societal mission. I would like to share a few thoughts with the Honorable Members of this Legislative Assembly on the topic "Missions for Madhya Pradesh's Prosperity" with reference to the core competence of Madhya Pradesh and national vision."
Seva Sangam –

Shyam Parande
Shri Mohan Bhagwat, Sarsanghchalak of RSS while addressing the Seva Sangam on 7th Feb 2010 in Bengaluru said, “The volunteers of Rashtriya Seva Bharati are serving the society in a way that is different from many others. They are out to generate a self-reliant class out of the underprivileged ones.” He further stated, “The volunteers do not want the underdeveloped to be at the receiving end all their life but start serving the society as soon as they are on their own. Let them also enjoy the joy of ‘giving’. To be appropriately presented this would mean ‘turning beneficiary into benefactor’ and not the present locale of ‘once a beneficiary always a beneficiary’.
Looks like a tall claim indeed. The milieu being the modern independent Bharat where most people like to draw undue advantages out of any given situation, many would extend a hand to receive something and not to partake anything, many are not concerned whether they are entitled to receive or not but would not hesitate to receive, many would not bother that they are grabbing something meant for someone else that might pinch a kid’s belly. Well, in this situation a claim of ‘self reliance’ of the beneficiary or turning the ‘beneficiary into a benefactor’ seems to be hopeless.
The Sarsanghchalak went ahead to tell the delegates present in the conference, close to 1000 drawn from some 450 odd organizations, that the Seva being offered is neither for religious conversion to some faith nor for attaining the ‘punya’. The elite in this country almost worship an icon for receiving the highest global award and the icon did not have qualms in committing that the charity is for ‘harvesting the unreached’. Billions of dollars pour into this country in the name of charity and development only corrupting the religious panorama of Bharat. Both charity and faith loose, while a group or other attains the ‘target’. Otherwise, Hindus connect every act to accumulating as much ‘punya’ as they can through Seva. Yet, the Sarsanghchalak wanted the representatives of the organizations not to indulge in religious conversions while they serve.
“Ego”, the Sarsanghchalak said, “has no place while you serve. You are fortunate having the opportunity to serve the underprivileged, the underdeveloped, the illiterates, and so forth.” Controlling the ego is a major challenge for the educated and the elite. Lessons in humility do not come through books or computer; one has to master this virtue through practise & experience alone. No other means to achieve the humility. In the modern era every activity is being verified through the lenses of ‘fashion’ and that serving the society is also a fashion that adds ‘colours’ to one’s personality. Of course, not to mention that everyone trying to help others has at the back of one’s mind ‘puffing’ self profile. However, the delegates in the conference are being asked to shun ego & fashion, and learn humility.
I had the opportunity to talk and discuss with the grass roots as well as the higher ups in the echelon present in the “Seva Sangam” and decided to have a reality check on the ethics that were presented from the podium.
Participants, I could understand, were from large voluntary organizations on the one hand and small on the other, not to mention that there were the mid-size also. Budget and expanse of activity wise, some were restricted to a village or a slum while the others were covering a state. A fine spectrum well spread to understand the quantity & quality of activity, their penetration & acumen in reaching the legitimate needy, I thought. I could talk to quite a number of delegates to gauge the organizations they are working for, their working method, their finance management, their achievements, et al.
‘Annapurna Mahila Bachatgat’ (A women Self Help Group) working in the village Kolda of Nandurbar district is involved in producing the Neem seed kernel powder. The Dr. Hedgewar Seva Samiti through the Krishi Vigyan Kendra Nandurbar had trained the group in producing the Integrated Pest Management (IPM) that includes physical, biological, chemical control of pests. The major component of IPM is the Neem seed kernel powder.
The SHG could produce 32 quintals of Neem Seed kernel powder last year to earn Rs.48000/- and this year could produce 60 quintals to earn Rs.90000/-, making the women participants of the SHG self reliant, enhancing the confidence of the women from the small and remote village. The Annpurna Mahila Bachatgat is now looking for other avenues to work together and earn better, helping their kids for improved education.
If this was the case of the SHG producing the Neem powder to be self reliant, the story of some others who utilised the same powder to advance their economic resources needs to be listened to.
Namdev Atmaram Koli, a small farmer from Hatmohida village in the same district had been cultivating Bt. Cotton for quite a few years now. However, he adopted the IPM method since last two years using the produce of the Annapurna Mahila Bachatgat to save on chemical sprays which cost him Rs.3600/- per hectare to Rs.1700/- per hectare while the net earning on the cotton produce has been enhance from Rs.27500/- to Rs.39850/- on the same plot of land. The local resources and technology has been effectively used to provide self reliance to the women’s SHG as well as helping the farmers improve on their profits.
I may be permitted to elaborate a case of Kantilal Gojilal Naik, a tribal farmer from Navapur Taluka among the Satpura Mountain. Kantilal was harvesting rice for quite many years and since his training with the KVK Nandurbar has doubled his rice harvest. It was the training in seed treatment, Integrated Nutrient Management, and Improved agronomical practices along with improved rice variety that brought the difference.
But this is a difference that many other NGOs can talk about. Kantilal, the tribal farmer from the remotest village has gathered the courage & conviction to offer his own farmland for experimenting to the agricultural university. Any person with integrity, just cannot ignore what the Sarsanghchalak was talking about and will have to trust his word
Dr. Hedgewar Seva Samiti Nandurbar accomplished the self reliance in the remotest villages through the SHGs and the agricultural innovations. Can we have a look at the urban slums and the much talked about city of Bengaluru?
Ramya, a girl at the age of 5 had to resort to rag picking, like some other children because she lost her parents before that age. She had a noble hearted neighbour who accommodated the young kid but the supporting family was also part of the slum and had economical restrictions. Ramya used to leave the home everyday for rag picking from 8=00 AM to 8=00 PM, a rigorous 12 hour routine.
She would spend her entire day rummaging through large piles of trash sorting out and recyclable paper products. At the end of the day Ramya would take the paper products she had collected to a recyclable center where in exchange for her findings she would receive Rs.10/- only, a paltry sum for day long toil. That is inhuman on the part of the civil society.
Ramya was 8 then. She was spotted by a Seva Vrati of Nivedita Nele, a home for rag picking girls run by Hindu Seva Pratishtana Bengaluru. Quickly Ramya could understand the importance of education and joined the Nivedita Nele starting her 1st standard at the age of 8. The challenge of being in a home and discipline was huge for the young girl who was enjoyed the roaming and roving at will on the streets of the city. She struggled a lot to herself for a year or so and was helped by the Seva Vratis, full timer ladies, to settle down.
Ramya is now 13 studying the 5th standard and has a dream of serving the aged people whom she watches around while she walks up to her school from Nivedita Nele home. This is amazing to understand that a girl, who was destitute herself, that too within a short period of just 5 years, is dreaming of serving others. Ramya is not alone for singling out. Saumya a 4th grade student from Nivedita Nele topped her class with 100% marks while Netra, a 10th standard student excels in traditional Rangoli art and a compere of programs par excellence.
Let me also talk about a village and this is from the southernmost district of the country- Kanya Kumari. Perumal Self Help Group- a women group- has influenced the life of their village absolutely. Caste differences are done away- women representing all castes in the village are members of the group- no discrimination. Drinking water tank- which happens to be the bone of contention in every other village- is open to all villagers. The members of the SHG initiated cleaning process of the tank themselves offering ‘kar seva’, following which whole village participated. ‘Anganwadi’ centre for the young kid’s education was brought into the village from a neighbouring village as the students had to walk long. An enterprising unit using the green technology to manufacture plates and bowls out of Areca nut leaves has been established- from micro finance to micro enterprise development. The local village panchayat and Banks, observing the impetus, have joined hands with this SHG offering funding to various schemes in the village.
Well, can not this be called the metamorphosis that the Sarsanghchalak was talking about? Turning the beneficiary into a benefactor, appropriately!
Well, a Ramya from Bengaluru streets, a Kantilal from the remote tribal village in Satpura, the Annapurna Mahila Bachatgat SHG group from Nandurbar, the Perumal SHG from Kanya Kumari district of Tamil Nadu, are just a few examples of the change that is being brought in the minds of the beneficiaries by the dedicated band of activists. Not bothered about someone watching them or not, someone cares for them or not, they have raised the flag of development and that they would carry till they achieve the goal. The urge to serve and the urge to develop are innate and concurrent among the people who volunteer and the people who are being offered some kind of support through this movement. This is something different, I realize from what I see otherwise.
Are they not the “Grassroots Leaders” joining hands for development of the underdeveloped and yet do not cater any ego, totally selfless shunning name, fame or anything else, and sowing the seed of self reliance in the minds of people who would have been otherwise?
Probably, these are the people who made the Sarsanghchalak speak out for their action.
The author is secretary Seva International and can be reached at e-mail