1. FESTIVALS: Prabodhini Ekadashi, also known as Devotthan Ekadashi, the 11th day of Kartik Shukla Paksha falls on November 13 this year. It is believed that Vishnu sleeps on Shayani Ekadashi and wakes on Prabodhini Ekadashi, thus giving this day the name "Prabodhini Ekadashi" ("awakening eleventh"). The end of Chaturmas, when marriages are prohibited, signifies the beginning of the Hindu wedding season. A fast is observed on Prabodhini Ekadashi and the ritual marriage of the Tulsi plant is performed with god Vishnu, who is regarded as the husband of Tulsi. In Maharashtra, Prabodhini Ekadashi is linked with the god Vithoba - a form of Vishnu. Varkari pilgrims throng the Pandharpur temple of Vithoba on this day. In Gujarat, more than 800,000 pilgrims perform the 32-km Parikrama of Mount Girnar over a two-day period. This is performed as a gesture of thanksgiving to the gods, who are believed to have assembled on the mountain. In Pushkar, Rajasthan, the Pushkar Fair or Pushkar mela commences on this day and continues till Kartik Poornima). This fair is held in the honour of Brahma, whose temple stands at Pushkar.
2. RSS ABKM MEETS IN KOCHI: The annual baithak of Akhil Bharatiya Karyakari Mandal of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh was held at the Bhaskareeyam Convention Centre adjacent to Madhav Niwas, the Kerala RSS headquarters, at Elamakkara in Kochi on 25, 26 and 27 October. The baithak was inaugurated by Sarsanghchalak Mohan Bhagwat. This was the first time the meet was held in Kerala.
The ABKM passed 2 resolutions and also discussed the Madhava Gadgil panel report in detail, environmental issues in general and eco-system of Western Ghats in particular. It felt that this generation does have the responsibility to reverse the current unhealthy trend of ostentatious lifestyle and follow the Bharatiya model of environmental friendly development, so that future generations can live in peace.
On Communal and Targeted Violence Bill, the ABKM felt that the introduction of this bill in Parliament should be opposed by all right thinking people. It is biased and anti-Hindu. It divides the society into majority and minority and it is anti-constitutional. It will damage the social fabric of the country. Instead of preventing communal violence, it will lead to further division.
RSS has expanded its organisational growth since the ABKM biathak of October, 2012. Shakha activities have started in 2500 new places. Now, 6000 places are having either weekly or monthly shakhas. More than 50,000 villages are having RSS presence in the forms daily, weekly or occasional shakhas. Total number of contact places is 75,000. Answering a question about RSS’s involvement in electoral politics, Bhaiyyaji Joshi said that RSS is not a political party but it believes that every voter is responsible and should to vote. RSS will like to have 100 % polling. RSS will actively campaign for the enrollment of voters in the voters’ list. Answering a question on government’s reported move to use the wealth of temples to face the economic crisis, Bhaiyyaji said that RSS does not endorse it; government should not do it.
The meet strongly condemned the serial bomb blasts in Patna on 27th October. It saw it as a blatant attempt to terrorise and scare nationalist forces. ABKM expressed the confidence that the spirit and resolve of nationalist forces will remain undaunted despite such cowardly terrorising acts.
Resolution 1: Growing Jehadi Radicalization in Southern States of Bharat
The Akhil Bharatiya Karyakari Mandal expresses grave concern over the growing radicalization of Jehadi forces especially in the Southern states of Bharat. Although separatist and secessionist activities exist all over Bharat, its menacing portents in recent times especially in Southern Bharat in terms of their penetration among Muslim youth; terror training and export modules; attacks on Hindu activists; and active connivance with anti national Maoists and international Jehadi elements pose an unprecedented challenge to the national security. The lackadaisical attitude of successive state governments turning a blind eye to these nefarious forces has become more worrying factor to all patriotic minds.
The emergence of ‘Popular Front of India' (PFI) and its front organizations in Kerala consequent to the ban on SIMI should be seen in this context. It’s formation as a coordinated effort between organizations like 'Karnataka for Dignity'(KFD), 'Manitha Neethi Pasarai' ( MNP ) in Tamilnadu and 'Natioanal Development Front' ( NDF ) in Kerala, under the purported aim of 'promotion of democracy and social justice' is nothing but a camouflage to perpetuate hard-line ideologies. Large scale brainwashing and weapon’s training of Muslim youth; export of such terror elements in other parts of Bharat as revealed by recent designated NIA court's verdict in the 'Kashmir recruitment case'; the penetration in Police and govt machinery; admission by Kerala Government to the state High Court about the links with Hizb ul Mujahideen, Lashkar- e Tyaba and Al-Qaida clearly reveal the real face and agenda of these outfits. Their attempts to develop a political face with a pan Indian presence should be nipped in bud.
These radical forces are turning Kerala into a hotbed of anti social and anti national activities. While the Northern Kerala is becoming safe hideout and training ground for terror elements, the coastal and other areas of strategic importance are witnessing mass purchases of lands by these elements at an exorbitant price supported by rackets of counterfeit currency and gold smuggling. Planned allurement of Hindu boys and girls, rampant distribution of hate literature proclaiming Jehad, poisonous propaganda through certain media elements and disproportionate growth of Muslim population especially in North Kerala are putting the state on a ticking time bomb.
The blatant support from political elements as evident from the presence of political leaders including Ministers in the family function of Abdul Naseer Madani, a notorious criminal accused in many terrorist acts including 1998 Coimbatore bomb blast case; refusal by Kerala government to hand over Marad massacre investigation to CBI etc., have emboldened these forces to such an extent as to hatch plans to assassinate nationalist Hindu leaders in Kerala. The present U.D.F. government in Kerala remains a mute spectator to all such anti-national activities.
These tentacles of terror have engulfed the adjoining states of Tamilnadu and Karnataka too. In Tamilnadu, attacks on Hindu activists and their offices, vandalizing of Hindu festivals, violent demonstration on American Consulate, recent gruesome killings of state level functionaries of Hindu Munnani and BJP and armed encounter with the Police at Puttur in Andhra Pradesh, are the testimonies of their increasing grip over the State. Unfortunately, they are being completely overlooked as a result of the competitive minority appeasement by both the ruling and opposition political parties of the state. Areas of coastal Karnataka like Bhatkal town have become a storehouse of weapons, bomb training and terror export. These forces are planning to target Hindu religious places like Tirupati, Madurai, Shabarimalai in many parts of Southern Bharat.
The ABKM demands that the Union and the concerned state governments undertake extensive investigation by the Central agencies about the nature of clandestine activities of these radical groups, their links and source of funding both within and outside the country and take firm measures including a ban on organization like PFI, to put an end to these forces. It also appeals to all patriotic forces including media to be vigilant about such elements and prevail upon the political parties and governments to act firmly against these antinational activities.
Resolution 2: Need for Effective Management of Our Land Borders
The Akhil Bharatiya Karyakari Mandal wishes to draw the attention of the nation to the conditions prevailing along Bharat's land borders and the conditions of the people living in villages along the borders. Bharat shares borders with 8 countries. It is a matter of regret that Bharat faces border disputes with most of these countries.
The ABKM underscores the need for strengthening border infrastructure along all the land borders. Studies have revealed that border infrastructure is utterly inadequate in many border areas.
The ABKM regrets to note that the 4057 km long most sensitive Bharat-Tibet border happens to be the most neglected one. In many sectors, carpeted roads end 50-60 km short of the borders, causing immense difficulties to the people living in border villages. Transport facilities are meagre; several villages have a bus service once a week only. Schools have no proper buildings; hospitals don't exist; electricity is erratic or non-existent; telecommunications facility too is unavailable for many villages. Market places are far off, forcing villagers to crossover to the other side for their shopping needs.
The ABKM emphasises that people living in the border villages are also our border guards just like the soldiers guarding our borders. Apathy of the Governments to the plight of these people is dangerous to border security.
Lack of infrastructure in these areas is leading to lack of employment opportunities and creating livelihood problems, resulting in migration. Occupation of pasture lands by China in these areas is further aggravating the problems of the villagers.
People living in villages along Indo-Pak border and the LoC have been facing constant threat to their lives from continuous shelling from Pakistan army. Loss of property, livestock and occasionally the lives of people is a norm there. They receive meagre or no compensation for these losses. At many places people of the border villages are compelled to live in camps for years on. Even those in villages face severe problems. Their movements to their agricultural lands are restricted due to fencing, land mines, etc.
Bharat-Nepal, Bharat-Myanmar and Bharat-Bangladesh borders have become safe havens for illegal trade, fake currency, smuggling of weapons, trafficking in human and drugs etc. Terrorists and anti-national forces use these borders to slip over into neighbouring countries. Bharat-Bangladesh border has remained porous leading to continued large scale infiltration and smuggling of live stock, including cows and its progeny. Mushrooming of illegal Madrasas, Mosques and settlements on both sides of Bharat-Nepal Border has emerged as a serious threat to both the country.
In view of the prevailing situation, the ABKM calls upon the Government of Bharat to:
1. Give top priority to building basic infrastructure like roads, rail network, electricity, water supply, schools, hospitals etc. along the borders.
2. In border areas constitute Village Defence Committees and give appropriate training and incentives to people in border villages and make them stake holders in border security and management
3. Constitute an independent border management authority to manage the affairs of all borders.
4. Complete the fencing along Bharat-Bangladesh border and strengthen border security by effective deployment of forces along all other borders.
5. Provide proper compensation to the people who have lost access to their lands due to fencing, land mining, etc.
6. Develop ancient religious and other potential tourist sites along the borders. Encourage border tourism which will benefit the people living in border areas, while at the same time countrymen at large develop emotional attachment with the borders.
7. Create a mechanism for effective operational coordination between military and para-military forces engaged in border security.
8. Develop a mechanism for dialogue and co-operation between the people on the borders and the armed forces.
The ABKM opines that the greatest challenge is the defeatist mindset of the Government of Bharat. It is unfortunate that our leadership fails to display its firm commitment to protecting every inch of our territory. The ABKM demands that the Government and its officials stop parroting that our borders are "not demarcated fully". It is untrue. Bharat's boundaries are well defined. Tragically, our leadership lacks courage to assert this historic truth.
The ABKM cautions the countrymen to not assume that the border security is the responsibility of the Government and the armed forces alone. Patriotic countrymen should constantly keep a vigil on the situation along our borders and be ready at anytime to safeguard them.
3. SWAMI VIVEKANANDA'S 150TH BIRTH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATED IN SEOUL: The Vedanta Society of Korea celebrated Swami Vivekananda's 150th birth anniversary on October 20th. The function showcased various facets of Bharatiya culture, including dance, music, yoga, tourism and food.
The event, 'Vivek 150', included Vivekananda Yoga Olympiad, a speech contest, and an exhibition on Swami Vivekananda's life and message, which were organised at Sookmyung University. The event was supported by the Indian Cultural Centre (ICC) Seoul, the Indian Chamber of Commerce of Korea (ICCK) and Sookmyung Women's University of Korea. The programme started with ceremonial lighting of lamp and offering floral tributes to Swami Vivekananda, followed by a documentary on his teachings and message to the world.
In his address, Swami Medhasananda, chairman of the Vedanta Society of Japan, said that Swami Vivekananda had taught the world that in essence all religions advocated service to mankind which is the most effective form of worship.
4. THE CLEANEST VILLAGE OF ASIA: Do you know the cleanest village in Asia is in Bharat? It is at a distance of around 90 km from Shillong, and the road leading up to it has some of the most panoramic and breathtaking views in the country. Till over a decade ago Mawlynnog was practically unknown to tourists until *Discover India* Magazine accorded it the cleanest village status in 2005. Nestled in the pristine East Khasi Hills of Meghalaya the residents of this picturesque village along the Indo-Bangla border have learnt to live at harmony with mother Nature and might very well become an example that urban folk should emulate. As one walks around the narrow zig-zagging paths of the village one is astounded by the clean well maintained black tarmac and the spotless frontyards and sidewalks of the bamboo stilt houses. There are stylish bamboo dustbins everywhere and separate compost pits in various pockets of the village for organic and inorganic wastes. Polythene use is completely banned and so is smoking. There are public toilets which the villagers themselves maintain and everyone takes part in the ritual weeding, sweeping and cleaning of the gardens and roads which happens every evening. Even the children are taught from an early age to keep their surroundings clean and they don’t hesitate to pick up the odd piece of garbage on the road and put it in the bin.
The village is well supplied with an efficient localized water supply and sanitation system. Just outside the village on the passing river the amazing living roots bridge is situated which speaks out for the ingenuity of the people. It is over 200 years old and was constructed by tying the roots of two banyan trees and maneuvering them to get entangled in such a way as to create a passage over the stream. The sky view tower on the eastern side of the village is a tall structure built on the support of a tree with bamboos and gives a wonderful view of the Bangladesh plains. For the discerning traveler there are many unmapped trails that one can explore around the village full of little waterfalls and sacred forests abounding in flora and fauna. The guest houses in the village are basic tree houses built on top of stilts that almost jut out into the adjacent forest, staying in them is an experience in itself. There is a lot that urban society could learn from Mawlynnong and its environmentally conscious citizens.
The self sustaining models though rudimentary have very strong foundations and have more to do with behaviour and customs that the peoples have adhered to and upheld. With the increasing influx of tourists the challenge for Mawlynnog is to maintain its culture and also educate outsiders with their ways. Do you think modern cities in Bharat can replicate what the citizens of Mawlynnong have done? With better technology and infrastructural support Bharatiya cities can certainly take Mawlunnong’s concepts forward and create self-sustaining environment systems with minimal damage to the eco systems. All we need are more responsible and conscientious citizens who will take up the cause of the environment.
Mawlynnong can be reached by road and it is roughly a three hour drive from Meghalaya’s capital, Shillong.
5. 'MADHAV NETRA PEDHI': a pioneer organisation of Nagpur, started in early 90’s in memory of second Sarsanghchalak of RSS, Madhav S. Golwalkar popularly known as Guruji, has within short time set a good example of Eye Bank with technological expertises, compassion and public education. Various social service organisations came together and formed an umbrella organisation ' Saksham ' which will work with handicapped people like blind, deaf and mute, slow learners, cerebral pulsey victims and lame persons. Sewa International, US supports such service to needy people.
6. RSS SARSANGHCHALAK MEETS JUSTICE KRISHNA IYER: RSS Sarsanghchalak Sri Mohan Bhagwat visited on October 21st, Justice VR Krishna Iyer at his residence in Kochi - Kerala. This was the outcome of the correspondence they had couple of months before. Sri Bhagwat, in his letter, had expressed his wish to meet Justice Krishna Iyer when he visits Kochi.
Sri Krishna Iyer told Bhagwat that he had invited the wrath of some people due the support he extended to Narendra Modi. But, he does not care. He likes to see and support honest people. Sri Modi came to see him some time back. Sri Bhagwat told Sri Krishna Iyer that honesty is a precious commodity these days. We, in Sangh, keep on meeting honest people. It is they who influence the social consciousness.
Dr. Bhagwat said that, he has been wishing to meet Sri Krishna Iyer since long time; but, it is materialised only now. He added that Sri Krishna Iyer is a fatherly figure for all, a true Judge in Words and spirit. He embodies all the noble values in social life, which is fast diminishing. I found him very honest, committed to truth, fearless, sincere and well intentioned.
When it was mentioned that Justice Krishna Iyer turns 99 next month, Mohan Bhagwat told that according to Bharatiya tradition complete life is 120 years. He wished Sri Krishna Iyer such a long life. Sri Bhagwat told Krishna Iyer that coming years would witness good happenings. Society is undergoing lot of changes. He sought Sri Krishna Iyer’s blessings for all good happenings. Sri Krishna Iyer said that Bhagwat’s visit was a great experience.
7. VOLUNTEERS SWUNG INTO ACTION IMMEDIATELY AFTER THE CYCLONE HIT ODISHA, ANDHRA: As the cyclone Phaline struck the coast of Orissa and Andhra Pradesh on the evening of October 12, it was Sangh Volunteers who under the banner of Utkal Bipanna Sahayata Samiti (UBSS) spontaneously came out of their homes to extend a hand of support and love to the people in distress. The cyclone with a gale speed of 200 km per hour and heavy rains ravaged Ganjam and affected 11 districts—bringing distruction everywhere. At places like Paikabasa in Mayurbhanj district, 5,000 people were evacuated saving them from devastating flood. In rescue, relief or cleaning up of roads for communication, the Sangh Volunteers were on the forefront.
Spread over 5 critically affected districts, the Volunteers served cooked food to more than 4,000 people. Durgadevi and Dhabasila in Balasore district, Aryapalli, Gopalpur of Ganjam district were the places where swayamsevaks really did outstanding work. The Sangh Volunteers managed to take more than 5,000 people to safety before the deadly cyclone could strike. They also provided shelter to about 7,000 people. More than 16 roads were cleared by these volunteers in these localities.
8. SEWA LASER SHOW IN COLUMBUS, OH: Sewa International USA successfully hosted laser documentary “Laser Light Magic” on life of Swami Vivekananda at Columbus, which was very well received by audience including kids and teens.
This also introduced the SEWA to the Columbus Community with a bang. Around 500 people witnessed the show in the Grand Capitol theatre at Riffe center in heart of Columbus downtown. Sewa got whole hearted support from Jain Temple, Gurudwara, other temples and also from cultural associations like Gujrati mandal, Maharastra Mandal, Malayalee Association etc. Many established individuals, Vedanta scholars also supported the event.
9. HINDU COUPLES CELEBRATE KARWA CHAUTH IN PAKISTAN: Dozens of Hindus celebrated the Bharatiya festival of Karwa Chauth in Pakistan's largest city Karachi with traditional fervour and gaiety. Hindu couples gathered at the Laxmi Narayan Mandir near the Netty Jetty bridge to celebrate the occasion on 22nd October.
Rani, who broke her fast on the footsteps of the mandir which overlooks the Netty Jetty waters said: "Given the sort of situation we are facing in Karachi these days basically everyday is Karwa Chauth for us women no matter which religion they belong too. Things are so uncertain we just keep on praying that our husbands return home safely after work," Rani said.
10. BHARAT'S TOP 4 IT FIRMS BUILD RS. 56,000 CRORE CASH CHEST, INFOSYS LEADS: TCS, Infosys, Wipro and HCL Technologies -- have seen their combined cash chest swell to a whopping $9 billion (Rs. 56,000 crore) as their businesses continue to generate profitable growth despite turbulent macroeconomic scenario. This marks an increase of about $1 billion since the beginning of current fiscal in the four companies' cumulative cash position, which includes cash, cash equivalents, bank deposits and disposable financial investments.
11. ANDAMAN & NICOBAR, LAKSHADWEEP DECLARED NEW ‘HOPE SPOT’: Andaman & Nicobar and Lakshadweep islands have been named as the new "hope spots" by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and oceanographer Sylvia Earle of Mission Blue, an organization involved in the study of oceans. A hope spot is an area of ocean that merits special protection because of its wildlife and significant underwater habitats. The two islands are the first spots in Bharat and part of 31 new hope spots across the world added to the existing 19 spots. "What we've done here is identify a number of critical areas that represent a real hope to restore the health of our imperilled ocean," IUCN quoted Sylvia as saying.
Andaman & Nicobar have 556 islets with unique flora and fauna. There are around 270 species and sub-species of birds in these two islands of which around 106 have been declared endemic. The Andaman Wood Pigeon, Andaman Padauk and Dugong have been declared the state bird, the state tree and the state animal respectively.
12. CHAMUNDESHWARI RATHOTSAVA DRAWS LARGE CROWDS: Chamundi Hills, which witnessed a large crowd during the Dasara festivities, came alive again as the Chamundeshwari Rathotsava was held on October 17. Witnessed by thousands of devotees from Mysore and surrounding areas, the hill shrine was packed with people since the crack of dawn. The archaks built up the momentum by chanting hymns and conducting special pujas. The scion of the royal family Srikantadutta Narasimharaja Wadiyar and his wife, Pramoda Devi Wadiyar, participated in the chariot festival. The idol of the Goddess, which was adorned with jewels and flowers, was placed inside the ratha pulled by devotees around the temple.
13. BHARATIYAS ARE OUT-EDUCATING AMERICANS: BARACK OBAMA — Billions of people from countries like Bharat and China are striving hard to "out-educate" Americans in mathematics and technology, President Barack Obama has said while stressing on education reforms to prepare Americans for a global economy where "jobs can go anywhere."
"Now you have got billions of people from Beijing to Bangalore to Moscow, all of whom are competing with you directly. And they are — those countries are working every day to out-educate and out-compete us," Obama said in his remarks to students at the Pathways in Technology Early College High School in Brooklyn on October 25.
"And every year brings more research showing them pulling ahead, especially in some of the subject matter that this school specialises in — math and science and technology. So we have got a choice to make," he said. He said if the workforce is not educated enough, it will be left behind and find it hard to get a job that pays a living wage.
14. BHARATIYA-AMERICAN APPOINTED TO TOP DIPLOMATIC POST: The US Senate has confirmed Bharatiya-American woman administrator Nisha Desai Biswal as the assistant secretary of state for South and Central Asia, making her the first person from the community to hold the top diplomatic position. Biswal, who is currently the assistant administrator for Asia at the US Agency for International Development (USAID), will replace incumbent Robert Blake to head the key bureau in the state department. President Barack Obama nominated her for the position on July 18.
15. BHARAT TO LAY 14 STRATEGIC RAILWAY LINES NEAR CHINA, PAK BORDER: As part of preparations to meet challenges from China and Pakistan, Bharat is planning to lay 14 strategic railway lines close to borders with these two countries to help in easier and faster movement of troops. The railway lines are besides 73 roads being constructed along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) with China, sources said in Delhi. Out of the 14 planned railway lines, survey has been completed for 12, they said.
The railway lines have been planned in Jammu and Kashmir, Arunachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Rajasthan. Of the 73 roads with a total length of 3812 km, laying of 61 roads covering 3,404 km have been assigned to Border Roads Organisation (BRO), the sources said.
The infrastructure development is being carried out as China has made strides in this regard and Bharat is lagging much behind.
16. SHRI VISHWA NIKETAN: Pravas: Shri Ravikumar, sah samyojak Vishwa Vibhag will start his tour to Malaysia, Hong Kong and Singapore after Diwali. Visitors: Shri Sukdeo – New Zealand. Shri Suhanthan, Gopakumar – Sri Lanka.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT: You must understand the whole of life, not just one little part of it. That is why you must read, that is why you must look at the skies, that is why you must sing and dance and write poems and suffer, and understand, for all that is life. – J Krishnamurthy
JAI SHREE RAM
FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THINGS COLOURFUL
Australia-born photographer Robyn Beeche is known across London and England for her iconic fashion pictures. She gave up everything to spend her life in Vrindavan, documenting its living culture. She tells Divya Kaushik that she is working on a book on the raas lila tradition
For someone working as per the catwalk calenders, coordinating schedules with the world-known makeup artistes and fashion photographers, the decision of leading life in a small Indian town might be not be an easy one. But for Robyn Beeche it was simple. She knew her aim is not to get lost in the “snap snap” of the “money-making” world but to add value to her photography. Her idea of photography is not just clicking images but it is reflecting the culture of the place and an experience through her photographs.
The first visit to Vrindavan in 1985 was the life-changing event for this Autsralia-born photographer, who became famous in London for her iconic 80s images. “I had met Rajeev Sethi in England in 1982 during the Festival of India. When I came here he suggested that I should not go anywhere else but Vrindavan since it was the occasion of Holi.
So there I was in the middle of Barsana, colours splashing in the air like a toddler throwing paint randomly on a white sheet of paper. For me that is what photography is, an experience narrated through colours against the white backdrop,” shared Robyn, who since 1985 has been based in Vrindavan, chronicling life and Indian culture through her images, books and other documentaries. Documentary film, A life Exposed, by Australian director Lesley Branagan and award-winning cinematographer Bonnie Elliot, shows how India’s rich visual content paradoxically provides Robyn the chance to nourish her main themes (illusion, transformation) in a culture where they occur spontaneously as religious expression and are not constructed. “My journey has been surprisingly positive and it is a daunting thing to have your life up on the screen. Leslie has done a great job by sharing my life and it has been an enriching experience for me. The documentary will help sharing my life with people and inspire them positively to value their own culture and history. India is changing fast and since I have been based here for long now even I have noticed that change. I believe that change is good but that change should not make us forget about our cultural practices and traditions. Generation ahead should have documents and archives to look up to and I am contributing towards that. Through my photographs, books and films I want to reach out to larger people so that traditions do not become history with no reference to it. Also I liked the way the director has portrayed my life and the way she has captured the intensity and depth of my work. Many people who saw the documentary said that they never knew how my world changed while shifting between the two contrasting worlds and cultures,” said Robyn.
Her journey as a photographer started when she was 27, as an assistant to a photographer. Within two and a half years she learnt the tricks of the trade and then moved to England to work with the photographer who used to work extensively with countries like Japan and India.
“It was very interesting, the way he used to convey the essence of the country through his pictures. I learnt a lot from him and after he left I was on my own doing several collaborations and busy in the world of fashion photography,” said Robyn. Even while she was in England, doing a job which many would envy, she never really enjoyed the materialistic world and that can be one of the reasons that today she is liking her quite life in Vrindavan. She has an opportunity to be a part of festivities like Gopa Ashtami, Holi and Phool Lila.
“I have never been bored. There are so many things to keep me motivated here. I keep doing pilgrimages for documenting and photography and have been to Kumbh. To record the living culture that exists in Vrindavan is a fulfilling experience. I have no diary dates to follow, whenever I want I can rush to the temples and capture the most vivid things. Apart from exhibiting my works at festivals and galleries like IGNCA (Indira Gandhi National Center for Arts) I also write books. I wrote a book Celebrating Krishna and I am doing a book on raaslila tradition,” she informed. – The Pioneer, October 28, 2013.