Shravana Shukla 5 Vik Samvat. Yugabda 5116: August 1, 2014




1.  FESTIVALS: Shravan Poornima which is celebrated throughout the country and by Hindus around the world falls on August 10 this year. It is known by various names in various regions of Bharat, the most prevalent being Rakhee Purnima or Rakshabandhan which is the festival strengthening the bond of love between brothers and sisters.

It is also celebrated as birthday of Shri Baladeva, elder brother to Bhagwan Krishna. In Orissa, it is celebrated as Gamha Purnima when all the domesticated cows and bullocks are decorated and worshipped. In central parts of Bharat such as Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Jharkand Shraavana Poornima day is celebrated as Kajari Purnima. It is an important day for the farmers and women.  In parts of Gujarat, Shraavana Poornima day is celebrated as Pavitropana. On this day, people perform the grand pooja or the worship of Bhagwan Shiva. - Top


2.  STRIVE HARD TO BECOME UNIQUE: DR. KALAM TO YOUTH AT RESHIMBAUG: Former President Dr APJ Abdul Kalam giving a mantra of success to the youth asked them to develop a 'unique personality' in them. The ‘Missile Man’ as he is known, Dr Kalam was delivering a talk on "Transforming India through Science and Technology". The program was organized by Vijnana Bharati, Vidarbha unit, at Dr Hedgewar Smriti Mandir premises, Reshambag on 29th July.
Interacting with the students from various colleges of Nagpur, Dr Kalam said "everybody around you will try to make you just another person. But, remaining unique is the biggest challenge and perhaps the toughest battle. To win this battle you will have four tools. They are: big aim, hard work, dedication and inspiration. These four tools will provide you conducive atmosphere to become unique".
Union HRD Minister Smriti Irani who was the chief guest reiterated in her address the BJP-led NDA Government’s resolve to improve the overall standard of education in Bharat.
RSS functionary Dr Manmohan Vaidya, MD Baidyanath Group Suresh Sharma, Pramukh Sanchalika of Rashtra Sevika Samiti Shantakka, and many others were present on the occasion.
Earlier Dr Kalam and Smriti Irani visited the 'Samadhi' of RSS Founder Dr Hedgewar and his successor Golwalkar Guruji and paid floral tributes. - Top


3.  YUVA 2014 IN AUSTRALIA: HSS Australia successfully organized second yuva annual camp during 18-20th July wherein 31 students from 9 universities participated The 3 day camp activities were mainly focused on seva, mentoring and learning through physical activities and games. The focus of intellectual activities was on character building and active transition from thought to selfless action. Everyday schedule started at 6 am and finished at 10-30 pm including prayers, yoga, group games, discussions, workshops Garba and quiz etc.  - Top  


4. RASHTRA SEVIKA SAMITI AKHIL BHARATIYA KARYAKARINI and pratindhi mandal baithak was held from 24-27th July at Nagpur. A total of 196 delegates attended the baithak including a sevika from USA.  At present, there are a total of 2228 shakhas including 309 daily ones. Programs to celebrate 80th year of sevika samiti in 2016 were discussed in the baithak. Dolma Gyari of the Department of Home, Central Tibetan Administration was also felicitated. Van Shantakka, Pramukh Sanchalika appealed in her concluding address that sevikas should strive to become conscious citizens with the values of motherhood and, leadership. - Top


5.  2ND BHARAT-CHINA YOGA SUMMIT HELD IN DALI, YUNNAN: The 2nd Bharat -China Yoga Summit was held in Dali, Yunnan Province in China recently. Around 1500 Yoga Practitioners participated in the event besides local government officials, media professionals and academicians.
The theme of the Summit was “Science of Yoga”. Speaking on the opening ceremony, Bharat’s Ambassador to China Shri Ashok K Kantha highlighted the importance of Yoga and traced its long history.
Vice-Mayor of Yunnan Province Mr. Gao Shuxun at the opening ceremony highlighted the closer cooperation between Bharat and Yunnan province and termed Yoga summit as an important milestone in terms of cultural exchange between Bharat and China. Seventeen Yoga teachers from all over Bharat participated in the Summit. - Top


6.  VHP INITIATIVE ‘INDIA HEALTH LINE’ LAUNCHED IN INDORE: INDIA HEALTH LINE Madhya Pradesh launch took place in Indore in presence of eminent specialist doctors & representatives of medical fraternity. INDIA HEALTH LINE has a National Call Center to attend to patients’ calls who, after seeing the neighboring General Practitioner doctor, want to consult specialist doctors for further advice & necessary treatment.
Launching INDIA HEALTH LINE, renowned Cancer Surgeon & VHP International Working President Dr Pravin Togadia said, “There are untreated diseases only because patients after primary examination by the doctor do not approach specialist doctors as advised.
The poor, lower middle class & middle class families suffer more due to this. To avoid this, INDIA HEALTH LINE aims at connecting Medical Fraternity with the needy & poor patients.” - Top


7.  TRAIN TO  'MATA VAISHNO DEVI' - SHRI SHAKTI EXPRESS: After a prolonged wait, pilgrims will be able to directly reach Katra, the base camp of the Mata Vaishno Devi shrine by rail, after Prime Minister Narendra Modi flagged off the first train from the station nestled in Trikuta Hills in Jammu and Kashmir's Reasi district on 4th July.
Speaking on the occassion Prime Minister Modi said, “Here is a facility to connect devotees with Vaishno Devi." The facility is not only for the people of J&K but also for the people of India who want to visit J&K, he said, suggesting that the train be called the Shri Shakti Express.
The train will traverse through seven tunnels and over 30 small and large bridges. There will be a small station - Chakrakhwal - between Udhampur and Katra.  - Top


8. FIRST BALESHWAR AGARWAL MEMORIAL LECTURE: Smt. Sushma Swaraj, Minister for External Affairs & Overseas Indian Affairs said that Bharatiya Government gives high priority to engagement with Bharatiya Diaspora around the world. She was speaking on the India’s Diaspora Policy and its various Dimensions on the occasion of Ist Baleshwar Agrawal Memorial Lecture organised by Antar-Rashtriya Sahayog Parishad (Indian Council for International Co-operation)
Shri Lal Krishan Advani, former Deputy Prime Minister of Bharat in his presidential remarks commended the role played by Baleshwar ji Agarwal - veteran journalist and former Secretary General of Antar Rashtriya Sahayog Parishad. He said that social organisations like ARSP have complemented the efforts of the Government in strengthening people to people relationship in these countries.
The program was attended by envoys from Mauritius, Fiji , Guyana , Suriname , Bhutan , Indonesia and other dignitaries. Former foreign Secretary and ARSP President Shri Shashak  stressed on the need of promoting research in Bhrat on Diaspora issues. - Top


9. PANAMA'S FIRST LADY ATTENDS MORARI BAPU'S LECTURE: The First Lady of the Republic, Lorena Castillo de Varela, attended the lecture by Hindu spiritual preacher Morari Bapu. At the event, the preacher, on his first visit to Panama (to present Ram Katha), spoke of truth, love, compassion and forgiveness as essential values for all religions that can transform anyone into a peacemaker. The event, organized by the Hindu Temple at a local hotel, was attended by the Ambassador of Bharat to Panama Shamma Jain, government representatives, members of the Hindu community in Panama, and special guests. - Top


10.  TATA GROUP TO INVEST $35 BILLION IN 3 YEARS; FY14 REVENUE TOPS $100 BILLION: Tata group will invest $35 billion in the next three years as part of its vision 2025 by when it expects to achieve market capitalisation comparable to the world's top 25 companies.
Addressing the Tata group's Annual Leadership Conference in Mumbai, Tata group Chairman Cyrus Mistry laid out the road map for the diversified conglomerate, which saw its total revenue crossing the USD 100 billion mark again in 2013-14.
Tata group's total revenue grew by 18.5 per cent in 2013-14 at Rs Rs 6, 24,757 crore (USD 103.27 billion). Tata companies have operations in more than 100 countries across six continents, and export products and services to over 150 countries. - Top


11. NAVY GETS NEW FACILITY TO COMMUNICATE WITH NUCLEAR SUBMARINES: With Bharat planning a larger fleet of nuclear-powered submarines, which can prowl underwater for several months at a time and let loose their nuclear-tipped missiles as and when required, the Navy has acquired a new advanced facility to communicate with the silent predators. The state-of-the-art very low frequency (VLF) transmitting station was commissioned at INS Kattabomman in Tirunelveli (Tamil Nadu) by Navy chief Admiral RK Dhowan on 31st July. "The new facility will boost our ability to communicate with submarines, which have trailing wire antenna to pick up the coded VLF radio waves, on an uninterrupted basis throughout the year," said an officer.
Only a handful of nations have such a VLF capability, which is critical to pass coded orders to nuclear submarines on long-range deterrent patrols.  - Top


12. DHARMIC SABHA OPENS MULTI-MILLION DOLLAR HOME FOR THE VULNERABLE: The Guyana Hindu Dharmic Sabha on 8th May commissioned a multi-million-dollar home for abused women and children at Ankerville, Port Mourant, Corentyne. Doing the honours of cutting the ribbon to the majestic multi-wing edifice, Bal Nivas, was no other than Bharatiya superstar and playback singer Sonu Nigam, President Donald Ramotar; Prime Minister Samuel Hinds and President of the GHDS, Dr. Vindhya Persaud.
Dr. Persaud spoke about the project and thanked President Ramotar for giving them the land a few years ago. “The shelter, which is to become fully operational by July, will house more than 60 children and their mothers. Additionally, it will encompass a Skills Training Centre which will be opened to the community and a Counseling Unit, so we offer this facility to serve you, the Guyanese people.”
Sonu Nigam expressed delight in being involved in Bal Nivas right from the beginning a few years ago. President Ramotar congratulated the Dharmic Sabha on the venture and urged Berbicians to help upkeep and care the facility.  - Top


13. FIVE BJP VETERANS APPOINTED AS NEW GOVERNORS: Former union petroleum minister and senior BJP leader Ram Naik will be the new Governor of Uttar Pradesh. His appointment and that of four other governors was announced on 14th July by the President's office. The others, all BJP veterans, are Kesri Nath Tripathi, a former UP assembly speaker, as the Governor of West Bengal, Delhi leader Om Prakash Kohli as the Governor of Gujarat and Balramji Dass Tandon as the Governor of Chhattisgarh. Padmanabha Acharya will be governor of Nagaland.  - Top


14. BHARAT TO HEAD BRICS' $100 BILLION DEVELOPMENT BANK: Leaders of the BRICS emerging market nations launched a $100 billion development bank and a currency reserve pool on 15th July in their first concrete step toward reshaping the Western-dominated international financial system.
The bank aimed at funding infrastructure projects in developing nations will be based in Shanghai.
Bharat will preside over its operations for the first five years, followed by Brazil and then Russia, leaders of the five-country group announced at a summit.
"The agreement towards setting up the BRICS New Development Bank is a significant step. I am happy the initiative announced in 2012 in Delhi has become a reality," Prime Minister Narendra Modi said. They also set up a $100 billion currency reserve pool to help countries forestall short-term liquidity pressures.      - Top


15.  10,000-YEAR-OLD ROCK PAINTINGS DEPICTING ALIENS AND UFOS FOUND IN CHHATTISGARH: Chhattisgarh state department of archaeology and culture plans to seek help from NASA and ISRO for research on 10,000-year-old rock paintings depicting aliens and UFOs in Charama region in Kanker district in tribal Bastar region. "The findings suggest that humans in prehistoric times may have seen or imagined beings from other planets which still create curiosity among people and researchers. Extensive research is needed for further findings. Chhattisgarh presently doesn't have any such expert who could give clarity on the subject," said archaeologist JR Bhagat.
There are several beliefs among locals in these villages. While few worship the paintings, others narrate stories they have heard from ancestors about "rohela people" — the small sized ones — who used to land from sky in a round shaped flying object and take away one or two persons of village who never returned. - Top


16.   ONE IN EVERY 3 APPLE ENGINEERS IS BHARAT: Bharat has become a major ingredient in Apple's secret sauce, and the scale may surprise many. It is estimated that a third of the $171-billion company's engineering staff is Bharatiya, and that a large and increasing proportion of its enterprise software, service and support work is done by Bharatiya IT vendors.
Apple filed 1,750 H-1B applications during the 10-year period 2001 to 2010, but the number increased sharply to 2,800 during 2011-13. US-based HfS Research that compiled the data says the majority of the H-1Bs would be Bharatiyas.  - Top


17. ART MATTERS: TEMPLES IN PAKISTAN: The book, 'Historic Temples in Pakistan: A Call to Conscience', authored by Karachi based journalist Reema Abbasi, focuses on minority Hindus who celebrate Bharatiya festivals on the other side of the border.
A result of extensive research by Reema Abbasi and Madiha Aijaz, the book highlights around 400 photographs that cover different aspects of overlooked historical temples and shrines in Pakistan that few know about. They travelled far and wide to various pilgrimage sites like Hinglaj, the Katas Raj temple the Panchmukhi Hanuman Mandir in Karachi, among others.
The book vividly captures detailed narratives and photographs of shrines, rituals and Hindu festivals in Pakistan. - Top


18.   RSS EK PARICHAY: In a video on youtube Dr. Manmohan Vaidya, Akhil Bhartiya Prachar Pramukh of RSS explains about the RSS and its objectives to few college students of New Delhi. Dr Manmohan Vaidya gave elaborate answers to the questions related inception of the organisation, mechanism of function, relationship of RSS with BJP, other socio-political relevance, seva projects etc. It can be seen at
19.   SHRI VISHWA NIKETAN: Pravas: Shri Saumitra Gokhale , samyojak Vishwa Vibhag is on a tour to Suriname, Guayana and Trinidad. Ravikumar , sah samyojak is on a tour to Thailand, HongKong and South Korea after Singapore. Dr.Ram Vaidya, sah samyojak will visit USA and Canada. Visitors: Ashish Puri and family – USA, Radha Nanku – Mauritius, Kumar Nawani – Thailand. - Top


FOOD FOR THOUGHT: All bad qualities centre round the ego. When the ego is gone, Realisation results by itself. There are neither good nor bad qualities in the Self. The Self is free from all qualities. Qualities pertain to the mind only.  - Ramana Maharshi - Top

Rakesh Sinha
The comment by a Goa minister that India is a Hindu Rashtra is not something which goes against the spirit of the Indian Constitution or annihilation of secularism. The connotation Hindu is inclusive in its origin and evolution. Any effort to draw a parallel between Hindu nation and theocratic states needs to be contested. India is the only nation in the world which is co-terminus with a civilisation. In other words, India is an organic example of continuity of age-old civilisation. Therefore, Hindu Rashtra is an adjective of the nation, not a political objective. The origin of the connotation, Hindu, has neither religious origin nor identification with particularism. Its parallel connotation which is suggested is Bharatiya Rashtra. The nation has been named after the Hindu legendary Bharat, the son of Shakuntala and Dushyant, and he was groomed in the ashram of Kanwa, a Hindu saint. Going by epistemology, the term Bharat is more religious than Hindu.
Such controversy on the usage of Hindu is due to relentless deconstruction of our tradition of secularism since colonial period. The colonial India witnessed development of two parallel streams: one, people with perspective on the time-tested Hindu culture and world view. There are umpteen examples of such people—Raj Narayan Bose, Maharishi Aurobindo, Lala Lajpat Rai, Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Bipin Chandra Pal, Mahatma Gandhi, M S Golwalkar and Radhakrishnan. They used historiography and socio-cultural genealogy to understand India. By their logical and argumentative writings, they heralded a semi-renaissance in the country. No nation becomes civilisational antiquity when it fails to trace its roots and its people feel guilty while answering, who am I? Pal’s The Soul of India is a classic quest for defining India as a civilisational nation.
But there was another strand which included people who understood India through the writings of Western scholars and submitted themselves to Western political philosophy, assuming it to be superior, more rational and of greater universal application than what India could offer. People like Keshab Chandra Sen, Jawaharlal Nehru, R P Dutt and Amartya Sen are representatives of this dimension. The classic test has been the definition of secularism. The former understood secularism as a way of life and felt proud of India’s tradition of diversities. It can be understood by the example of Cheraman Mosque in Kerala built by a Hindu king to facilitate Muslim traders and immigrants. This is the world’s second oldest mosque (after Mecca). It denotes culture of coexistence and progressive assimilation.
Unfortunately, the latter stream borrowed definitions and interpretations from the West and interpreted secularism as a political duel between competing communities based on their numerical strength. It is they who made use of the colonial concepts of majority and minority. This led to mitosis of secularism into the process of ‘otherings’.
This was visualised during the debate in the Constituent Assembly. Fathers of the Constitution wanted to deter any further damage to our civilisational progress. Tajammul Hussain categorically stated that the majority-minority dichotomy was the British creation and argued that because he worshipped the same God in a different way, it didn’t turn him as a minority. He appealed to the makers of free India to “throw this term (minority-majority) from your dictionary”. But it could not happen. Contrary to it, the concept got institutionalised. H C Mukherjee, the Vice-Chairman of the Constituent Assembly, who was by faith Christian, warned that “if our idea is to have a secular state, it follows inevitably that we cannot afford to recognise minorities based upon religion”. Any concept whose practice breeds ‘otherings’ can’t be secular. And here the concept of Hindu Rashtra reflects geo-cultural inclusiveness which abhors uniformity. (Rakesh Sinha is a faculty in Delhi University and Hon Director of India Policy Foundation, Delhi. New Indian Express July 27, 2014 )  - Top
Excerpts from a  Special Interview on the occasion of 60th year of  Bharatiya Majdoor Sangh BMS  with BMS organizing Secretary KC Mishra
By Hitesh Shankar and Pramodkumar 
How do you look at the 59 years journey of BMS?
It is very fruitful and satisfactory journey. The biggest achievement is that we have been able to establish nationalist vision among the labourers, which has been our prime objective since inception. Earlier, all trade unions were affiliated with some or the other the political party but we are the only labour organisation, which have no political leaning. We have moved forward with the nationalist thinking and it has been imbibed among the labourers. There was a time when trade unions were symbolic to red flags, now this perception has changed. The people with nationalist thinking dominate every sector. It is a big achievement in six decades. Communism, which influenced two third of the world, has now has lost ground even from the countries where it originated and nourished.
Six Decades, Six Milestones
First was the bonus, which we called 'differed wage'. We started fighting for it in 1969. Today, if all workers get bonus, it is because of the constant fight of BMS. The communists too were not with us when we raised this issue.
Second turning point was Dearness Allowance. The formula used for its calculation was faulty. We fought and got it rectified.
Third turning point was becoming largest labour union. There was a time when other unions were not ready to accept us as a trade union. Leaders like late SA Dange and Nanasaheb Gore had dictated against sharing any dais with DB Thengadi. But today, they all are rallying around us under joint front.
 Forth is the regularisation of 1.25 lakh workers in Postal & Telecommunication Department. It was for the first time in the history of trade unions that workers in such a large number were regularised in one go in 1998.
Fifth is 'equal pay for equal work' for contract workers. The Government of India amended the law for it. We got it implemented for the workers of Damodar Valley Corporation workers in 2006-07. Later, it was implemented in many other departments. On January 23, 2013, the GoI issued an order that equal wage will be paid for equal work for all. However it is yet to be implemented all over the country.
Sixth is the promotion of nationalism. Even the hardcore communists do not hesitate to shout the slogans of 'Vandemataram' and 'Bharat Mata ki Jai'.
The growing nationalism seems to be changing the heart of even hardcore communists. On September 8, 2013 CPI leader Gurudas Dasgupta, during a demonstration organised by Joint Front of CTUs at Jantar Mantar in Delhi shouted the slogans of ‘Bharatmata ki jai’ and ‘Vandemataram’. He went on saying that these slogans can only strengthen the labour movement today.
It shows the way nationalist thinking has influenced labour movement and even the communists, who once treated us enemy number one.
The BMS has also changed the mindset with regard to frequently organised strike. Earlier, it was the main weapon for left leaning unions, but we used it only as the last resort, when all negotiations fail. We firmly believe that the industry and nation should not suffer economic loss due to us.
In your opinion who suffers due to strikes—labourers, industries or the nation?
Ultimately, it is the nation which suffers. Labourers too suffer as many of them are retrenched and we have to fight for years to get them reinstated. By and large it costs everybody.
How far the BMS has been able to achieve the dreams envisaged by Thengadiji, the BMS founder?
Our ultimate objective is 'workers’ ownership’. Honestly speaking, we are still far away from this dream. We are not even near to achieving it. We want that in Board of Directors of every institution at least half of the members should be from the workers side.
How is participation of women in the organisation?
It is low at apex level, but at the ground level it is huge. We have effective women unions. In Anganwadi sector, they are a formidable force. When they organise any demonstration, over 50,000 women join it. The work is strong in Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan, Gujarat, etc. At district and state levels they have good participation.
It is believed the contract workers are reluctant to join union activities and the number of permanent workers is reducing. Then how the unions will survive?
It is a wrong perception. The contract workers join union activities in large number. Rather they need unions more for their protection. They fight more aggressively than the permanent workers. It is also a true that when these contract workers go on strike the entire operations get paralysed in industries, because they are in high number and work in all departments. I feel, time is not so far when the owners will be forced to think for recruiting workers on regular basis.
What do you expect from the new Union Government?
As a common man, workers too have high expectations. But the way government has started working, it is a matter of concern. All the policies, the Public Private Partnership, privatisation, outsourcing, etc. are against the interests of workers. The general budget does not give any healthy sign. We want total ban on disinvestment, minimum wage Rs 15000, minimum pension Rs 3000 linked to price index and strengthened labour department. We also want a common labour union recognition law for the entire country. In multiplicity of unions also there should be provision for proportionate representation as it is in the BSNL.
It means the confrontation may increase with the government in coming days?
Definitely, if the government continues to promote privatisation and FDI even in key sectors like defence and railways.
Why do you oppose FDI?
With the promotion of FDI there are conspiracies to relax labour laws, which ultimately lead to exploitation of workers. We want the government should come out with a white paper on FDI explaining both the inflow and outflow of money. If the government acts honestly, there is no dearth of funds in our own country. The government needs to win the trust of people.
The BMS and those who are running the government come from the same ideology. Then why this confrontation?
The confrontation develops when the concerned group is not taken into confidence.
As the organisation grows, some challenges grow too. What are those for BMS?
Being the largest labour organisation, the labourers expect we should resolve all of their issues. But this is not possible for any orgnisation. This is one of the biggest challenges. We also need new workers, who technically understand the labour field. It may take time and we are working in that direction.
What has been planned for the celebration of 60th year?
We have decided to have at least one fulltime worker in all 643 districts. Today, we have only 148 workers. Therefore, we need at least 600 new workers. Since huge money is required to support the expansion of work, we also have decided to collect Rs 60 to 70 crore during this year. Apart from it, the number of unions also has to be increased from 5000 to 6000.  (Organizer Weekly, July 27, 2014)  - Top


Ashok Chowgule

Recently, the IB had come out with a report questioning the motives and agenda of the foreign funded NGOs operating in India.  It is alleged that they have an anti-development agenda, and has caused serious loss in terms of economic growth in India.

Analysts, including journalists, have used various stratagems to divert the attention from the main charge of the IB.  One point they make is that there is foreign funding of NGOs that are set up by volunteers of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).  There is a malicious intention of linking that the work done by these NGOs is similar to the ones that the IB has made allegations against.
Some of the NGOs set up by the volunteers of the RSS do receive funds from abroad, for which they have the necessary permissions, and the accounts are regularly filed.  These NGOs are involved in service activities of different types all over the country.  In contrast, the ones mentioned by the IB are those involved in agitations, and ensuring the projects of various types, involving large investments, are held up.  In some cases, even road projects have suffered due to agitation against land acquisitions.
One of the important service activities of the RSS affiliated NGOs is the Ekal Vidyalay – one-teacher school.  Nearly 50,000 schools are operating in the tribal areas, providing education up till the fourth standard.  The students are instructed in the three Rs – read, write and arithmetic.  Additionally, they are informed about their own history as well as of the country, so that they develop a sense of belonging to the nation.  These schools have imparted the necessary skills to the students, whereby they are able to take advantage of the opportunities provided by the state to improve their lives.
One such case is of Kavita Raut.  She got education at an Ekal Vidyalay school near Nashik.  She then came to stay at a hostel for girls in Hadsul – another project of RSS related NGO.  This enabled her to get education up till 10th standard.  Here, her running skills came to the notice of Sports Authority of India, who then started to give her coaching in long distance races.  She went on to win the Bronze medal in 10,000 meters at the Commonwealth Games 2010, and Silver in 10,000 meters and Bronze in 5000 meters at the Asian Games 2010.
Other tribal boys and girls have been able to lead lives better than what they otherwise would have been forced to do.  In turn, these youngsters have gone back to their tribals to help their community members in various ways.  One such way is to be a teacher in the Ekal Vidyalay schools.
This programme is funded by donations primarily from individuals.  Each school costs about Rs 20,000 per annum, half of which goes to salaries.  The teachers are also equipped to dispense first-aid, and be counselors to the elders, making them social leaders in their areas.
About 25% of the schools are funded by Indians living abroad.  This has provided them satisfaction that they are able to make some contribution, however small, in improving lives of people in India.  It has provided a strong emotional link between people of Indian origin.
Then there is the Dr Hedgewar Hospital in Aurangabad.  It was started in 1989 in a premise of 250 square meters and 10 beds, by seven swayamsevaks, who had just finished their education in medicine.  These doctors could have gone into private practice and earned very good income.  Instead, they decided to take a very small salary to maintain themselves.  And when they got married, and if the spouse was a doctor, they motivated the spouse to also be a volunteer.
Within eleven years, they moved into a 16,000 square meter premise with 150 beds, which has now been expanded to 27,000 square meters and 300 beds.  High quality medical service is provided at minimal cost to those can afford, and at zero cost those who are unfortunate.  And today, the Hospital also runs projects in 150 villages not just on health, but also on poverty alleviation and skills development.
There is a project of National Cleft Lip Foundation of United Kingdom which sends doctors to developing countries to undertake operations on those who cannot afford the cost.  For India, another RSS affiliated NGO, Sewa International’s Indian and UK units organize the treatment, with the help of a hospital in Nashik, also run by swayamsevaks.  About 20 doctors and 15 support staff, consisting of Indian origin and British doctors and nurses, come to India at their own cost.  In India, Sewa International locate the patients that need the treatment, the facilities of the operation theatre, and post-operation treatment.
There have been allegations made by groups, belonging to the communist ideology, that some of the funding goes to organisations that are alleged to be involved in violence against minorities.  These allegations have been given publicity in the media in India and abroad.  One correspondent belonging to a supposedly reputed financial daily in UK almost made it a mission of his, while in India, to put the RSS-affiliated organisations on the defensive.
The foreign funding agencies against whom the allegations have been made have been investigated by the authorities in their respective countries.  And in no case have these authorities found any evidence that would oblige them to take action against the funding agencies.  Yet, the allegations continue to be made, giving a clear indication that there is a political agenda at play, and not propagation of truth.
The RSS believes in doing positive work for the nation and its people.  Where the funds come from abroad, it is almost always from people of Indian origin, and not the multi-national corporations or the charities started by the founders of some of these MNCs.  All the RSS-affiliated NGOs, and the funding counterparts, run on minimal budgets, since the members offer their services on voluntary basis.  In contrast, the salaries in the NGOs, and their funding counterparts abroad, would match those in large corporations.
We in the RSS would like to ask organisations like Greenpeaces and others who are under investigation to list out how many people they have impacted in a positive manner.  Let them work for nation building, and we in the RSS would work with them so that we can combine our energies in a positive way.
(Ashok Chowgule is the Working President (External) of Vishwa Hindu Parishad )  - Top