Shravan Krishna 7, Vik.Samvat 2074, Yugabda 5119: 16 July2017

1.  FESTIVALS: Bharat completes 70 years of Freedom this 15 August 2. PM Modi tops 'the most trusted government' in the world: Forbes Survey
3. Saraswati: Filled with 20 Mn Bn Suns, BHARATIYA Astronomers discover Supercluster of galaxies 4. FRIENDS TODAY, FOREVER
7. Iron will and iron hand 8. Arunachal celebrates 'Dree Festival' with traditional songs and dances
9. UNESCO declares Ahmedabad as World Heritage City 10. New Hindu Temple Opens in Germany
11. 10th Anniversary Celebrations of BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, Atlanta, GA, USA 12. Thousands take part in Hindu parade in downtown Grand Rapids
13. Number of Hindus increases in Australia from 0.3% to 1.9% in 25 years 14. VETERAN SWAYAMSEVAK IN CANADA SHRI LABHMAL SABHARWAL PASSES AWAY AT TORONTO
15. Expand and strengthen Samiti organisation: Shantakka 16. RSS motivates people for Rashtra Seva
17.  500 RSS volunteers in Odisha help devotees in Puri 18. 300 STUDENTS GET ABHYUDHAYA SCHOLARSHIP
19. Sewa Matters 20. Mothers need to Awaken Children
23. US House nod to boosting Defence ties with BHARAT 24. SHRI VISHWA NIKETAN & FOOD FOR THOUGHT


A walkathon to change the mindset


1.                   FESTIVALS: Bharat completes 70 years of Freedomthis 15 August. Bharat's Freedom Struggle started against British East India Company's army at Bengal Presidency on 10th of May in 1857 and culminated in the midnight of August 14 and 15 in 1947. Various great people and freedom fighters sacrificed their lives in attaining the freedom for their future generations without worrying about their comfort, rest and freedom. We pay tribute and remember all of them this day. The day is celebrated with Rashtrapatiji's speech on the eve of Swatantrat Diwas. In the morning of August 15, Pradhan Mantri unfurls tricolor and highlights achievements of past year, important social issues and plans of further development, in his address to the nation from the ramparts of Red Fort. Flag hoisting, National Anthem singing, play and parade ceremonies including other cultural programmes take place in almost all the governmental and non-governmental institutions, educational institutions and private institutions all through the country. Tricolor is also hoisted in most of the countries of the world wherever Bharatiyas live in sizable number along with the flag of the respective countries. -GoTop


2. PM Modi tops 'the most trusted government' in the world: Forbes Survey: Bharat has come out on top in a survey conducted by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) on how much a country trusts its government. The result has been published in a report named Government at a Glance 2017. According to a Forbes report "With 73% India tops the governmental confidence league while Canada also had higher than average confidence levels at 62%." The result can be interpreted as a huge vote of confidence in Modi and his government in Bharat. -GoTop


3. Saraswati: Filled with 20 Mn Bn Suns, BHARATIYA Astronomers discover Supercluster of galaxies: Wow! A team of Bharatiya astronomers have identified an extremely large supercluster of gmalaxies and have named it Saraswati. The super cluster of 43 galaxies is located in the direction of constellation Pisces and is one of the largest known structures in the universe which may contain the mass equivalent to over 20 million billion suns. According to Inter University Centre for Astronomy & Astrophysics IUCAA, this is on me of the largest-known structures in the nearby Universe and is at a distance of 4,000 million light years from us, and stretching over 600 million light years. This novel discovery is being published in the latest issue of The Astrophysical Journal, the premier research journal of the American Astronomical Society.

Interestingly, Somak Raychaudhury, currently Director of IUCAA, Pune, who is a co-author of this paper, also discovered the first massive Supercluster of galaxies on this scale (the "Shapley Concentration"), during his PhD research at the University of Cambridge.Joydeep Bagchi from IUCAA, the lead author of the paper and co-author Shishir Sankhyayan (PhD scholar at IISER, Pune) said, ''We were very surprised to spot this giant wall-like supercluster of galaxies, visible in a large spectroscopic survey of distant galaxies, known as the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. This supercluster is clearly embedded in a large network of cosmic filaments traced by clusters and large voids. Previously only a few comparatively large superclusters have been reported, for example, the 'Shapley Concentration' or the 'Sloan Great Wall' in the nearby universe, while the 'Saraswati' supercluster is far more distant one. Our work will help to shed light on the perplexing question; how such extreme large scale, prominent matter-density enhancements had formed billions of years in the past when the mysterious Dark Energy had just started to dominate structure formation.''-GoTop


4. FRIENDS TODAY, FOREVER: Prime Minister Modi's historic visit to Israel has taken diplomatic relations to next level: The depth of a bilateral relationship between nations can be judged in two ways. The first, by the extent of people-to-people and leadership warmth, and second, by the scope of cooperation in multiple sectors.

On both these parameters, it can be confidently said that India and Israel are so close to each other that an attempt to measure the proximity's intensity might prove insufficient. Narendra Modi's historic visit to Israel - the first by any Indian Prime Minister - provided ample proof of this assertion. Modi and his Israeli counterpart, Benjamin Netanyahu, met and treated each other like bosom friends - they repeatedly referred to each other as "my friend" and "my dear friend" -  the people of Israel were ecstatic over the Indian leader's trip, and as many as seven agreements were inked during the occasion, covering a wide range of areas, from space exploration to irrigation to cyber security.

The India-Israel tie was elevated to a 'strategic partnership' level; India has vowed to learn from the Israelis the technology to clean rivers and make their waters fit for human consumption, enhance irrigation potential, understand the success mantra for entrepreneurship and start-ups, and evolve international quality standards. On its part, Israel has committed itself to not just Make in India but also Make with India (in Prime Minister Netanyahu's words), provide cutting-edge defence technology and work closely in counter-terrorism measures.

The overarching importance of the Indian Prime Minister's visit has been that the India-Israel relationship is definitively out of the closet. Over the decades, since independence, India had publicly maintained distance from the Jewish nation for a variety of unjustified reasons - both international and domestic. And yet, New Delhi continued to slyly do business with Israel when it fell into trouble, especially in defence matters. It must be said to Tel Aviv's credit that it did not hesitate to come to India's help despite the public treatment. Back in 1965, after the Chinese humiliation, New Delhi had approached Israel for mortars and small arms, and received it. The Israeli help in the 1971 war and the 1999 Kargil conflict have been extensively recorded, though the details remain a matter of speculation because India never officially acknowledged the support. In fact, even though full diplomatic relations were established between the two countries in 1992 (during Prime Minister PV Narasimha Rao's tenure) and defence cooperation was escalated, the secretive nature of the relationship remained in place. Prime Minister Modi's visit has ripped off this facade.

The deepening India-Israel bilateral has expectedly rattled certain nations and is likely to bring profound changes in the geo-strategic balance. Sections in the Pakistani establishment even see the Research & Analysis Wing and Mossad coming together to destroy the Islamic world, and particularly Pakistan! In the larger context, US President Donald Trump's promise to ratchet up his resolve to deal with terror-sponsoring nations, the US-Japan-India Naval exercises, and now the fresh impetus to India-Israel defence and strategic relations, taken together, will work in India's favour.(Editorial, The Pioneer, 7 July 2017) -GoTop


5. PRADHAN MANTRI PAYS HOMAGE TO BHARATIYA WW-I HEROES: Pradhan Mantri Narendra Modi on July 6 saluted the Bharatiya soldiers who laid down their lives during the World War I while protecting the Israeli city of Haifa from the Ottoman Empire forces and said the sacrifices made by them are a mark of enduring bond between the two nations.Modi visited the Bharatiya cemetery in Haifa along with his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu on the last day of his visit to Israel and laid wreaths at the site. -GoTop


6.  MOHAN BHAGWATJI RELEASES BOOK ON LIFE OF MODI: Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) Sarsanghchalak Mohan Bhagwatji credited Pradhan Mantri Narendra Modi for walking the talk for the last 70 years. He was speaking at a book release function in New Delhi on July 12. The book on the life of Modi, titled Narendra Damodardas Modi: The Making of a Legend, was unveiled in Delhi in the presence of Bhagwat and Bharatiya Janata Party chief Amit Shah. The book,  penned by Bindeshwar Pathak, a Padma Bhushan recipient  known for work in Sanitation (founder of Sulabh International), is all about Modi and the journey of his life.Mohanji said he still follows the same lifestyle of an RSS worker that he was before becoming the Gujarat Chief Minister and later Bharat PM.Bharat has a lot of hope from Modi, he added.  -GoTop


7. Iron will and iron hand: Terror attack on Amarnath pilgrims must be responded to, with unapologetic retribution: The attack in Anantnag district on pilgrims who were returning from a visit to the Amarnath shrine and were on their way to Jammu, was both terror-driven and communally motivated. And in either case, the involvement of Pakistani elements, tacit and overt, is more than certain. Since recent weeks, militancy in Kashmir valley, more so since the neutralisation of Hizbul Mujahideen terrorist Burhan Wani, has taken on communal overtones with the demand for establishment of an Islamic caliphate, and not a mere secession of Kashmir from India, becoming the pet theme of a number of militant leaders. Effectively, this has ripped the mask of the separatist elements both within Jammu & Kashmir and their handlers in Pakistan and exposed their true designs. The targeting of Amarnath pilgrims was obviously done to foment a communal divide and build on the perception that the struggle was for an Islamic rule in the State - or at least in Kashmir. The attack happened on the first day of the Shravan season; on the first anniversary year of Burhan Wani's killing; on pilgrims who had gone to the Amarnath cave which was, incidentally, first discovered by a Muslim, and whose family members are to this day the custodians of the cave. Of course, this is not the first time that Amarnath pilgrims have been made victims; there have been other assaults before. But the motives today are far more dangerous and they must be resoundingly tackled before the situation gets worse. There can be several explanations for the tragedy - the bus which was carrying the pilgrims was not part of the official convoy of the Amarnath trip and so it did not have the security cover; the bus driver had flouted the security guideline that he should not ply on the route beyond seven in the evening, etc. On the political front, there has been criticism of the failure of the Mehbooba Mufti-led Government to effectively confront the rise of militancy - partly because some its own utterances have not been strong enough against militants and partly because of the belief that the State administration has not fully cooperated in allowing a free hand to either the military or the Jammu & Kashmir police force. It's true that apologists for those who have been fomenting trouble, are also accountable for the spread of an environment where terrorism thrives.

Responsible leaders such as the Congress's Saifuddin Soz made the unbelievable comment that Hizbul commander Burhan Wani's life should have been spared so that the Indian establishment could have engaged in talks with him! Militancy derives oxygen not just from enemies from across the border and the Hurriyat, but also from mainstream politicians and academics who talk of human rights violations of terrorists and stone-pelters and their sympathisers, but care little for the lives of our soldiers and police personnel battling terror on a near daily basis in Kashmir. It can be said with some certainty that the militants who committed the Amarnath attack, will eventually be tracked down sooner or later. The more important point is: What must be our response to the likes of Syed Salahuddins and the Hafiz Saeeds and the Masood Azhars, who sit in Pakistan? (Editorial, The Pioneer, 12 July 2017) -GoTop


8. Arunachal celebrates 'Dree Festival' with traditional songs and dances: Apatani plateau located at the Ziro in the Lower Subansiri district organised a grand celebration to mark 50 years of modernised form of Dree festival where Kendriya Griha Rajya Mantri Kiren Rijiju took part as the Chief Guest.The festival is marked by grand ritual and community feasts. In ‘Dree Festival’, celebrations the main attraction is the traditional songs and dances.The Dree Festival is celebrated by offering prayers to four gods which are Tamu, Harniang, Metii, and Danyi to bring in a bountiful harvest season. As part of the rituals, fowls, eggs, and animals are also sacrificed during this festival. -GoTop


9. UNESCO declares Ahmedabad as World Heritage City: The largest city and former capital of Gujarat, Ahmedabad has been declared as a World Heritage City at the 41st session of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) world heritage committee at Krakow in Poland on July 9.Ahmedabad is the first city from Bharat to make its way to the World Heritage list. The nomination of Ahmedabad was supported by close to 20 countries, including Turkey, Lebanon, Tunisia, Portugal, Peru and Kazakhstan.The World Heritage Committee while including Ahmedabad in its World Heritage list, said "The walled city of Ahmadabad, founded by Sultan Ahmad Shah in the 15th century, on the eastern bank of the Sabarmati river, presents a rich architectural heritage from the sultanate period, notably the Bhadra citadel, the walls and gates of the Fort city and numerous mosques and tombs as well as important Hindu and Jain temples of later periods. -GoTop


10. New Hindu Temple Opens in Germany: Members of the Tamil community have transformed a former supermarket into a Hindu temple at Hochstrasse 10b in Hochneukirch with several large and small shrines, decorated in every detail, after just seven months of construction. With solemn ceremony and worship, the only Hindu temple in the district has been inaugurated. In the center of the new temple complex, which opened to many visitors, stands the Elephant God (Ganesha), which is the main murthi. "The Tamils have been well integrated into German society for decades, but they have not forgotten their roots," said Mayor Harald Zillikens, who also said that the new temple complex has improved the whole neighborhood. The temple is to become a center of the community.-GoTop


11. 10th Anniversary Celebrations of BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, Atlanta, GA, USA: His Holiness Mahant Swami Maharaj joined devotees and well-wishers in celebrating the ten-year anniversary of the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir. The festivities welcomed guests from all parts of North America and from around the globe. His Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj performed the unforgettable inauguration ceremonies in 2007 surrounded by the enthusiasm and excitement of hundreds of volunteers. Carrying forward his lifework and legacy, His Holiness Mahant Swami Maharaj commemorated this historic milestone by sharing divine memories from the 2007 events and encouraging devotees to remain steadfast in their pursuits towards spirituality.The event was attended by several community and government officials who recalled fond moments with Pramukh Swami Maharaj and shared heartfelt reflections on their first meeting with Mahant Swami Maharaj during his current vicharan. -GoTop


12. Thousands take part in Hindu parade in downtown Grand Rapids: For the first time, a Hindu parade called Granth Dindi was performed in the U.S., bringing 3,000 people to downtown Grand Rapids.The parade began at 8 a.m. July 8 outside DeVos Place and ended an hour later at Van Andel Arena. The intricately-choreographed performance included dancing, drumming and Hindu scriptures being carried on palanquins.The ritual procession goes back at least 700 years, and has never been performed on this scale before in America, said Fred Stella, a Pracharak -- outreach minister -- at the West Michigan Hindu Temple.The Granth Dindi parade was performed as part of the Bruhan Maharashtra Madal of North America, which is a conference that brings together Hindus from the Bharatiya state of Maharashtra. -GoTop


13. Number of Hindus increases in Australia from 0.3% to 1.9% in 25 years: There has been considerable increase in the population of Hindus in Australia as their number increased from 0.3 percent in 1991 to 1.9 percent in 2016, census figures indicate. The total population of Hindus is 440,300. -GoTop


14. VETERAN SWAYAMSEVAK IN CANADA SHRI LABHMAL SABHARWAL PASSES AWAY AT TORONTO: Shri Sabharwal ji was one of the pioneers of Sangh and VHP work in Canada. He was a pracharak during his young days in UP and P.P. Shri Guruji named him 'Yashwant'. He was continuously active and would constantly think only about the progress of Sangh work. While being socially active he also successfully raised a big family.Shri Sabharwalji will remain a constant inspiration to newer generation of karyakartas.  -GoTop


15. Expand and strengthen Samiti organisation: Shantakka: The three-day meeting of the Akhil Bharatiya Karyakarini and Pratinidhi Mandal of Rashtra Sevika Samiti concluded  in Nagpur on 3rd July with a calrion call by Pramukh Sanchalika Shantakka to strengthen the organisation and expand its scope. The meeting at Devi Ahliya Mandir was attended by over 170 Samiti activists from different states of Bharat.Pramukh Karyawahika of the Samiti Sitha Gayatri in her report in the inaugural session, said that the Samiti had organised training camps at 106 places in which 6711 young girls between the age group of 15-25 participated.Addressing the concluding session Pramukh Sanchalika Shantakka exhorted the members to fan out in the country and spread, expand and strengthen the organisation of Samiti. She appealed to the participants to utilise their capabilities for conducting socially useful activities and projects. -GoTop


16. RSS motivates people for Rashtra Seva: Senior Sangh Pracharak, Shridhar Paradkar, was felicitated on July 1 for his outstanding contribution to  literature. Presenting the Samman, Madhya Pradesh Assembly Speaker Dr Sitasaran Sharma said positive literature generated with positive mindset is useful for both the writer and the society and when the literature and the view move together the nation makes progress. "Shridharji has both the qualities. Being a Sangh worker he has moulded people who can truly give a new direction to the society and the nation. His honour is basically an attempt to show social gratitude to him," Dr Sharma said. -GoTop


17.  500 RSS volunteers in Odisha help devotees in Puri: As many as 500 volunteers of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) were engaged in providing services to devotees during Rath Yatra in Puri.The RSS provided nine kinds of services which include ambulance services, first-aid healthcare centres, stretcher seva, ambulance corridor, mobile drinking water supply, drinking water supply, assistances to patients in hospitals and information centre.On the first day of the Rath Yatra, Swayamsevals had taken as many as 42 patients to the hospital. Similarly, they carried as many as 40 patients in stretchers to the hospital. They assisted 270 patients and distributed free medicinces to them. As many as 350 Swayamsevaks created an ambulance corridor on the grant road. -GoTop


18. 300 STUDENTS GET ABHYUDHAYA SCHOLARSHIP: RSS inspired Keshavakrupa Samvardhana Samiti's educational initiative on 'Abhyudhaya' organised Vidyanidhi Scholarship Distribution Ceremony at Bengaluru on July 2. President of Bunts Association Chandrahas Rai inaugurated the event while senior RSS functionary Rajesh Padmar was the Chief Speaker. RSS Prant Sampark Pramukh Dwarakanath presided over the function. The scholarships were distributed to over 300 students of different classes from primary school to PG courses based on their socio-economic background. RSS Prant Karyavah and president of Keshavakrupa Samvardhana Samiti N Tippeswamy and various academicians were also present. -GoTop


19. Sewa Matters: RSS Sarkaryavah Shri Bhaiyaji Joshi said it is necessary to have sensitive mind to realise the pain and sufferings of our brethren in the society. "Sewa is not a matter of competition. It is also not the matter to be counted in figures. Rather it is a matter of feel", he said while launching a website ( of the RSS Sewa Vibhag on July 10. Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chaouhan, Madhya Pradesh Prant Sanghchalak Satish Pimbalikar and Sah Prant Sanghchalak Ashok Pandey were also present. The website will provide updates on the RSS sewa activities, success stories and inspiring narrations of personalities dedicated to sewa. Addressing the gathering Bhaiyaji said: "One does not release any advertisement to curb the weakness of one's family or the society. Also the efforts to remove the weakness are not advertised. We should have the same feeling while serving the society.", Bhaiyaji said. Shivraj Singh Chouhan said the RSS swayamsevaks are serving the society selflessly. -GoTop


20. Mothers need to Awaken Children: Rashtra Sevika Samiti organised a function to celebrate 112th birth anniversary of its founder Laxmibai Kelkar. Former Pramukh Sanchalika of the Samiti Sushri Pramilatai Medhe delivered the talk on Mausiji’s concept of awakened Bharat. She said the Samiti celebrates the day as Sankalp Diwas every year and this year it is being celebrated with the pledge to awaken their own family members by Samiti workers.

"The Samiti workers should realise their strength. Identifying one's strength is the first step for awakening. We should ourselves raise questions over anything wrong happening in the society", she said.Prof Sushma Yadav from Indian Institute of Public Administration while presiding over the function spoke on the need of awakened Bharat. -GoTop


21.  AMIT SHAH PITCHES FOR LINKINGEDUCATION SYSTEM WITH COUNTRY'S CULTURAL ETHOS: Bharatiya Janta Party president Amit Shah pitched for linking the country's education system with its culturalethos to remove "distortions" as he termed dynasty politics, casteism and minority appeasement as "cankers" affecting the country. "...All distortions in our education system will be removed and the entire system of learningwill further improve if we connect it with our core values, with our cultural ethos," he said on July 15 while speaking at the launch of the book on the speeches of the party's ideologue Shyama Prasad Mookerjee. While elucidating Mookerjee's initiatives on education, Shah described him as a "visionary leader" who laid emphasis on the education system which is connected with the basic fundamentals of our society and promotes natural talent. "Mookerj eeemphasised on these two points specifically so that education can become a mass movement in the early years of independence as the literacy rate was very low then," the BJP president said. -GoTop


22. Four BHARATIYA-Americans honoured with Great Immigrants award: Top US attorney Preet Bharara;Rakesh Khurana, Dean of Harvard College and Marvin Bower Professor of Leadership and Development; Madhulika Sikka vice president, executive editor, Mic and Abraham Verghese, eminent physician, professor and author are among 38 distinguished personalities who have been honoured with this year's prestigious "Great Immigrants: The Pride of America" award by the prestigious New York-based Carnegie Corporation. The 38 immigrants honoured this year come from more than 30 countries around the world and represent leadership in a wide range of professions. -GoTop


23. US House nod to boosting Defence ties with BHARAT: The US House of Representatives has passed a $621.5 billion Defence expenditure Bill that proposes to advance Defence cooperation with Bharat and also maintain a military capability to deter acts of aggression in the Indo-Asia Pacific region.Amid aggressive Chinese behaviour in the strategic region, the House of Representatives said on Friday, that the US has a national interest in maintaining the stability and security of the Indo-Asia Pacific region.The Bharat-related amendment, moved by Bharatiya-American Congressman Ami Bera, was adopted by a voice vote by the House as part of the National Defense Authorisation Act (NDAA) 2018, beginning October 1 this year. The NDAA-2018 was passed by the House 344-81. -GoTop


24. SHRI VISHWA NIKETAN: Pravas: Ravikumar, Vishwa Vibhag sahsamyojak will travel to Thailand, Singapore by end July. 

FOOD FOR THOUGHT: "All our world organizations will prove ineffective if the truth that love is stronger than hate does not inspire them." - Bharat ke Dwitiya Rashtrapati Dr. Sarvapalli Radhakrishnan. -GoTop



A walkathon to change the mindset

Pramod Kumar

Having begun with the objective of sensitizing the villagers, especially the youth, to initiate different activities themselves for their development, the Bharat Parikrama Yatra concluded on July 9 at the same venue in Kanyakumari from where it had started on August 9, 2012, also the anniversary of Quit India Movement. After walking 26,650 kms distance in five years as per the Indian calendar (4 years 11 months as per the English calendar) the Yatra exhorted 10 lakh villagers by directly visiting 9,000 villages. Over 20,000 youths were sensitised to join various developmental activities through 1,000 exclusive meetings with them. Also the Yatra interacted with over 10 lakh students in about 1,500 educational institutions all over the country.

During the Yatra, Shri Kedilaya fixed every strict rules for himself. He had meals only one a day and that too through bhiksha only. He walked bare footed for about 10-15 kms every day. His primary task after entering a village was to get in touch with the youth and prominent members of the village and discuss important issues including care of sick, differently abled, visually challenged persons etc. Then he took a round of the entire village and got himself engaged in a collective session of prayer at the village temple. That helped in creating a bond of oneness with the people. It also made the villagers realise that that villages were, once upon a time, a single encompassing family. During the village gathering, he discussed various issues including cow-protection, organic farming, indigenous seeds, preserving village culture, conservation of tress, etc. and exhorted the villagers to think for their development themselves and stop depending upon the Government for everything. Then, the journey resumed to the next village. This was the overall routine that he followed for five years. The slogan coined by him for the Yatra, "Know Bharat, Be Bharat and Make Bharat Vishwaguru", explains the whole thinking behind this endeavour.

Bharat Parikarma Yatra was basically a follow up action of the Vishwa Mangal Gau Gram Yatra, conducted from September 28, 2009 to January 17, 2010 with the objective of sensitising people about the protection of the cow, environment and problems of villages. In 2009, the Yatra went on for three months by vehicles, but now Sitaramji covered that distance on foot in five years.

On Guru Purnima i.e. on July 9, the Yatra concluded with a special Parikarma from Vivekananda Memorial to Kanyakumari Temple followed by Nirmalya Darshanam. A special prayer was offered at the southernmost tip of Bharat. Vishwajegeeshu yajna was performed praying to make Bharat a Vishwaguru. Poornahuti in the yajna was offered by RSS Sarsanghchalak Shri Mohan Bhagwat along with Shri Kedilaya and Kshetra Pracharak Shri Stanumaalayan. RSS Sahsarkaryavah Shri Dattatreya Hosabale and many other senior Sangh functionaries were also present. It was followed by a grand valedictory function in the evening at Nagaraja Thidal, Nagercoil, in Kanyakumari District. Sarsanghchalak Shri Mohan Bhagwat, Sahsarkaryavah Shri Dattatreya Hosabale, VHP general secretary Shri Champat Rai, Union Minister Shri P. Radhakrishnan, Swami Chaitanyananda Maharaj, Vellimalai Ashram, actor director Shri Kalaimaamani Visu and lyricist Shri Shri Piraisudan graced the occasion.

Shri Mohan Bhagwat expressed thanks to all those who supported the Yatra. He said Kanyakumari is the same place from where Swami Vivekananda had started his journey to awaken Bharat and spread the message of India to the world. As Sitaramji started Bharat Parikrama Yatra from the same place, it is good sign of change. "The Yatra proves that significant transformation is possible by visiting the villages. This Yatra is milestone in preparing the Indian mindset to lead the world. Our task is not merely to felicitate Sitaramji for the bold step that he had taken five years ago, but to start concrete follow up action to finish the tasks that he has underlined. We have to start from ourselves. As the people continue to join, the change will be visible on the ground. Gradually, entire Bharat will stand up with full vigour to lead the world. Let us start the work from today itself', Shri Bhagwat inspired.

Blessing the gathering, Swami Chaitanyananda Maharaj said the Punya Bhoomi Bharat is the land of great culture.  Citing the example of a section of media for projecting the country in a bad manner, the appealed to the people and media to bring out this abode of culture - the driving force of the country.

"Parikramas have been part of our land and many saints like Adi Shankara, Swami Dayananda, Guru Nanak, Swami Vivekananda and Jain Sadhus did Parikarmas. Likewise in this Kaliyuga, this continous non-stop walkathon for 26,650 kilometers in, 1,795 days covering villages of 23 states gives us a great feel that our nation is one in spite of various diversities", said Shri Champat Rai.

Hailing the great work of Shri Kedilaya, lyricist Shri Piraisudan stressed the need to create awareness for protection of the country's culture. Patriotic feeling should be deep rooted and respected, he said. "Having started with few people's support now Sitaramji is being received with great enthusiasm by thousands of people. A path encircling Bharat Mata shown by Sitaramji should be followed to see and do good deeds in the society", said Shri P.  Radhakrishnan.

 "It is the Bharat Mata who did the Parikrama", said Shri Kedilaya while thanking all the families, well-wishers, media, Vishwa Samvada Kendra Bengaluru, etc for their support in making the Yatra a great success. "Gram Rajya is Ram Rajya. This Yatra makes an appeal. Everyone should go to one's village and take care of the environment and other things there", he said. Appealing towards village upliftment, he said the pledge towards making Bharat a Vishwaguru should be taken forward. If this positive vibration prevails in our land, we can move towards Satyug, he added.

When Shri Sitaram Kedilaya started this walkathon on August 9, 2012, many people raised questions over his health and also the stamina as to how he at 68 would walk 10-15 kms everyday, what is the need to walk in this modern age when one has various means of travelling, etc.

But all those apprehensions proved wrong. Sitaramji did not fall ill for even one day during the Yatra. The success of this walkathon is an example for all to see that no obstacle can block the path when one is determined to create history.

The Yatra has generated positive energy in villages, which needs to be used in follow-up activities.

-- The Organiser Weekly,  23 July 2017.  -GoTop