1 June 2019 - SM1905

1.FESTIVALS: Puri Ratha Yatra, associated with Bhagwan Jagannath is the oldest Ratha Yatra taking place in Bharat. This annual festival is celebrated on Ashadha Shukla Dwitiya (July 4 this year).
The festival commemorates Jagannath's annual visit to Gundicha Temple via Mausi Maa Temple (aunt's home) near Balagandi Chaka, Puri.
As part of Ratha Yatra, the deities of Jagannath, his elder brother Balabhadra and younger sister Subhadra are taken out in a procession to Gundicha Temple and remain there for nine days. They are also accompanied by Sudarshana chakra. Then the deities or Ratha Yatra return to the Main temple. The return journey of Puri Jagannath Ratha Jatra is known as Bahuda Jatra.

During the festival, devotees from all over the world go to Puri with an earnest desire to help pulling the Bhagwans' chariots with the help of other priests pulling the chariots with ropes. The huge processions accompanying the chariots play devotional songs with drums, tambourines, trumpets etc. Children line the streets through which the chariot will pass and add to the mass chorus.
2. NARENDRA MODI STARTS HIS SECOND TERM WITH A FIRMER GRIP: Presiding over the biggest electoral victory for the BJP since its birth in 1980, Narendra Damodardas Modi on 30 May took oath as Pradhan Mantri of Bharat for the second time in a grand ceremony at the forecourt of Rashtrapati Bhawan.In a ceremony that lasted two hours, 57 Ministers, besides the PM, took oath. 36 ministers were sworn for second time. 20 MPs took oath of office as minister for first time. Introduction of Jaishankar, a former career diplomat who served as the Foreign Secretary from January 2015 to January 2018 caught many with surprise.

Leaders of BIMSTEC countries including Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Thailand, Bhutan, former Pradhan Mantri Manmohan Singh, Congress president Rahul Gandhi, Sonia Gandhi and host of high profile businessmen and film artists attended the oath ceremony.
Amit Shah is the new Home Minister of Bharat, Rajnath Singh has been moved to Defense and Nirmala Sitaraman to Finance, S. Jai Shankar is the new Foreign Minister and Ramesh Pokhariyal Nishank is the Human Resource Development Minister.
In recently concluded Lok Sabha elections,NDA won 353 seats, UPA stood at 91 while Others won 98. BJP alone passed the magic number of majority mark 272 with winning 303.
3. RAM KA KAAM KARNAA HAI, Ram ka kaam ho kar hi rahega' said RSS Sarasanghachalak Dr Mohan Bhagwat on May 26 in a mandir pranpratishtha programme in Udaipur, where he was accompanied by spiritual leader MorariBapu. 

Speaking on the occasion, Bapu said, “Since centuries this country has been chanting the name of lord Ram.  Today the country is passing through such circumstances that we need to think of doing Ram’s work too.” Shri Bhagwat said, “We should remember the message given by MorariBapu. Ram’s work needs to be done and Ram’s work will be done. Ram resides in our hearts. We all need to be active and move ahead to fulfil our goals.”Bhagwat was on a four-day trip to Udaipur since 24th to attend the ‘Sangh Shiksha SevaII’ training camp.

4. Swayamsevak Vipin Chaudhari Conquers Mt Everest: 27 year-old RSS Swayamsevak Bipin Chaudhari from Moradabad in Uttar Pradesh conquered Mount Everest and placed Bhagva Dhwaj (the saffrom flag of RSS) along with the National Flag on earth’s highest point. He saluted both the flags by Sangh method. 

Vipin, along with his 12 team members kicked off the journey on April 2. After a 50-day continuous trek with fatal risks, Vipin finally reached the summit at 9.00 am on May 22. Vipin’s father Gajendra Singh is a sub-inspector and his mother Punam Chaudhari is a housewife. Vipin is currently doing LLB from KGK college.

5. people of Bharat are fortunate to have once again got a stable government: RSS Sarakaryavah: This is the triumph of the national forces. Many compliments to each and everyone who have contributed to this victory of democracy. 

The spirit and ideal of democracy have once again been established for the world to witness.We trust that the new Government shall endeavour and succeed in fulfilling the aspirations and ambitions of the common people. We wish that with the completion of polling process all bitterness will end and the verdict of the masses is welcomed with humility.– Bhayyaji Joshi

6. Dr Manmohan Vaidya on Election results: This election was between two different ideas of Bharat. On one hand was the ancient idea of Bharat based on spirituality which was integral, holistic and an all-inclusive view of life. This has been known across the world as Hindu view of life or Hindu thought.

On the other hand, was the thought which saw Bharat by dividing it into different identities. They worked for their vested interests by dividing the society on the basis of caste, language, region and religion. Those who indulged in such politics of exclusion and division were always opposed to the idea that is integral and includes everyone. They tried to create a wrong perception over this view of life by making baseless allegations and repeatedly spreading lies.
This ideological battle which has been going on since independence, has now reached a decisive moment. This election is an important stage in this fight. When the society is united, there will be no platform for such divisive politics to survive. It was due to this that all such divisive elements came together and supported each other only to oppose the forces that unite everyone.
However, the wise people of Bharat have ensured the comprehensive victory of those who work on the principle of uniting everyone and development for all. This is a joyful and reassuring day that will foster a bright future for Bharat. People of Bharat deserve all the compliments. Hearty congratulations to all those who led and worked in the interest of Bharat in this ideological battle.

7. Set a Goal in Life and Achieve It:Addressing 26th Annual Day celebration of Vaidehi Ashram, a girls’ home run by Seva Bharati at Saidabad in Telangana on April 28, Pramukh Sanchalika of Rashtra Sevika Samiti Sushri V. Santhakka said Vaidehi is another name of Sita. She strived to perform her duty while suffering huge difficulties and turmoil. She never lost her courage, defended herself in all circumstances, and had to face even the ordeal through fire. Ashram girls should imbibe those values and take Sita as their ideal. Similarly, as Swami Vivekananda stated, everyone should set a goal in life for themselves, and then strive to fulfil the goal with the 5 Ds—Direction, Dedication, Determination, Discipline and Deadline.

Vaidehi Ashram is the home to 150 girls who were either orphaned or destitute. The Ashram takes care of their education and empowers them to be self-reliant. The Ashram inmates presented a variety of cultural programmes during the function. Dance dramas, skits, a solo performance of Jijabai, patriotic songs, Kolatam dance and many other cultural items were presented, which were appreciated by the audience. The Karate display by girls attracted the gathering.
Dy Director of Ministry of Defence Smt M. Balalatha, IAS, International Table-Tennis player Kumari Naina Jaiswal, Yoga Guru Dr. Aruna Devi and founder director of Mahadyuthi Nruthyalayam Dr B. Parijatha Reddy were among the distinguished guests.

8. RSS Sangh Shiksha Varg – Tritiya Varsh begins at Nagpur: The Sangh Shiksha Varg, Tritiya Varsh of the RSS was inaugurated at the Maharshi Vyas Sabhagriha, Dr. Hedgewar Smriti Bhavan premises in Reshimbagh, Nagpur on 23rd May.

At the formal inauguration addressing the participants came from across the nation, Bhaiyyaji Joshi, Sarkaryavah highlighted the importance of inculcating the right values and teachings in our daily behavior. He said that this is an important and essential task though it is difficult to practice.  

The core teaching of this varg is to teach the values for the life with pure and dedicated mind. Total 828 participants from across the country are participating in this year’s varg.  At the outset, Bhaiyyaji Joshi said that all the participants of the Tritiya varsh Sangh Shiksha Varg are fortunate because they have been selected. In this varg, the individual identities merge in one to serve the motherland. This national perspective and vision would stay with the participants even after the culmination of the varg, he said.
Sangh Shiksha Varg – Tritiya Varsh Sarvadhikari – Mananiya Aniruddh Deshpande (Akhil Bharatiya Sampark Pramukh), Karyavah – Bharat Bhushan (Prant Karyavah, Delhi Prant), Palak Adhikari – Jagdish Prasad (Akhil BharatiyaSahSharirikPramukh), Mukhya Shikshak

9. Blessing for First Stone of Shiva Temple: A religious ceremony of blessing of the first stone of what will be the future Temple of Shiva, designed by the professor and architect Troufa Real in the county of Loures in Portugal, was recently attended, among the numerous guests by the Mayor of Loures, Bernardino Soares, who accompanied the chairman of the Shiva Temple, Kantilal Vallabdas, in laying the first stone after receiving the blessing of Mahadeva Shiva.

Kantilal Vallabdas did not forget to give a special thanks to the Association of Residents of Santo Antonio dos Cavaleiros who, "for many years have welcomed us and have been a liberal and easy-going host to our community." Bernardino Soares said that "the placement of the first stone is a very important milestone for this community" and that the Municipal Council of Loures intends to "continue to be a partner of this project, which is now advancing to a new phase, taking decisive steps so that this important temple will be built." The construction project has been planned to be done in four phases. The first phase (already completed) is a space for socio-cultural activities; the second phase will encompass the worship activities, with the construction of the temple.

10. Japan abode of Hindu deities revealed in film by bharat expert: Scores of Hindu deities, including Saraswati, Lakshmi, Brahma, Ganesha, and Garuda, are actively worshiped in their temples by the Japanese, preserving Bharatiya traditions that have practically been forgotten in Bharat, shows a film screened in Delhi on May 19. It revealed that there are hundreds of shrines of Saraswati in the land of rising sun. The well-researched 30-minute documentary, “Indian Deities Worshipped in Japan”, funded by the ministry of external affairs, is directed by global fame photographer and art historian Benoy K. Behl (62), who specializes in the study of ancient cultures and historical monuments across the world. He has been engaged in research on Hindu deities in Japan since 1994. “The film depicts the science of living and Bharatiya philosophy of ethical living as most Hindu Gods are the personification of the fine qualities inside you,” said Mr Behl, who holds the Limca Book Record for being the most travelled photographer.

“In Japan, Saraswati is depicted and venerated not only with the Veena, but also remembered for her association with water. One may recall that Saraswati is originally the personification of the river by that name. Therefore, she is also worshipped in pools of water in Japan,” he said. “Many deities such as Vayu and Varuna forgotten in Bharat over the ages are still worshipped in Japan. Apart from Bharatiya deities, Sanskrit language is also well preserved in the Shinto and Buddhist-dominated country,” said M. Behl, a product of St. Stephen’s College and FTII. In the month of May, Behl has also come out with a coffee table book Hindu Deities Worshipped in Japan — his seventh related to art and culture.

11. Remnants of 100 Undiscovered Ancient Temples Unearthed in Cambodian Jungle: Archaeologists claim to have found the remnants of nearly 100 previously undiscovered ancient Hindu temples in the jungles of Cambodia. The temples, which in many cases are just foundations, were unearthed in Kratie Province’s historical SamphuBorak area of eastern Cambodia’s Kratie Province. The team believes they date back to the 6th and 7th centuries, hundreds of years older than the country’s world-famous Angkor Wat temple complex which dates back to the 12th century. SamphuBorak was one of the most densely populated regions of the pre-Angkorian era of Cambodia. Thuy Chanthourn, deputy director of the Institute of Arts and Culture of the Royal Academy of Cambodia, said the remains of the temples had not been recorded in earlier studies, by either French or Cambodian archaeologists.

Alison Carter from the Anthropology Dept at the University of Oregon, who is a director of P’teah Cambodia, researching ancient ruins, said: “I think when we hear temple sites people think of Angkor Wat or Ta Prohm, but in fact many Angkorian and especially Pre-Angkorian temple sites were quite small. Everyone focuses on the places in Cambodia where there is standing architecture but finding so many sites in other parts of the country demonstrates that other parts of Cambodia were occupied in the past and are important places. Compared to the Angkorian period, we don’t know very much about the Pre-Angkorian period. Any new information like this helps us complete a more holistic picture of the past.

12. Capt AAROHI PANDIT becomes first woman in the world to fly solo across the Atlantic in an LSA: The Bharatiya pilot performed the feat on the midnight of May 13. She achieved the record by landing her aircraft at Iqaluit Airport in Canada. She flew the 3,000 km long flight under some extreme weather conditions after taking off from Wick, Scotland (UK) with a couple of stopovers in Greenland and Iceland. Aarohi is flying around the globe as part of the WE! Women Empower Expedition: the first all-female team to circumnavigate the world in an LSA. She travelled in an eco-friendly, ultralight Sinus 912 which is also extremely fuel-efficient.

Aarohi embarked on her journey on July 30 last year. She was joined by fellow pilot and best friend Keithir Misquitta, who at 24, is just a year older than her. Keithir accompanied her during the first four legs of the expedition. They took off from Patiala in Punjab last year and flew across Rajathan, Gujarat and then onward to Pakistan, Iran, Turkey, Serbia, Slovenia, Germany, France, UK, Faroe Islands and Iceland before making it over treacherous Greenland.
Interestingly, Aarohi also set a world record for flying across the second largest ice sheet on the planet. She said:"I hope my journey can show women around the world that you can achieve everything if you work hard & purposefully."

13 Kailash Mansarovar added to Heritage list of UNESCO: UNESCO has added the Bharatiya part of Kailash Mansarovar to its tentative list of World Heritage Sites on 19th May. The Kailash Mansarovar is expanded across an area of 6,836 sq km within Bharat, the area is flanked in the east by Nepal and bordered by China on the north. The Bharatiya site is part of the larger landscape of 31,000 sq km. The Bharatiya part of the landscape lies in the State of Uttarakhand comprising of four major watersheds – the Panar-Saryu, the Saryu-Ramganga, the Gori-Kali and the Dhauli-Kali. At present, UNESCO’s list includes as many as 845 cultural Heritage sites across the world, out of which 29 are from Bharat.

14. bhawna kanth—the first woman fighter pilot of indian Air Force: Bhawana Kanth: Completing Day Operational syllabus on MiG-21 Bison aircraft, Kanth is the first woman fighter pilot to be qualified to undertake missions by day on a fighter aircraft. Bhawana joined the fighter squadron in Nov 2017 and flew the 1st solo on MiG-21 Bison in Mar 2018. 

With her dedication, hard work & perseverance she has become the 1st women Officer to achieve this feat. She is from the first batch of women fighter pilots of the IAF. Three women -- Kanth, Avani Chaturvedi and Mohana Singh -- were commissioned as flying officers in July 2016.

15. Dave Sharma is first Bharatiya-origin lawmaker in Australia parliament: Dave Sharma, the Liberal candidate and former Australian ambassador to Israel, has become the first Bharatiya-origin lawmaker in the country’s Parliament after winning a seat in Sydney suburb in the federal election. Sharma, 43, defeated independent candidate Kerryn Phelps for the eastern suburb seat of Wentworthin district. Sharma, who had lost to Phelps in a by-election six months ago, claimed the seat of Wentworth with 51% of the vote. Very humbled by the trust placed in me by the people of Wentworth. Look forward to being a voice for them in Parliament and the party room,” Sharma tweeted.

16. PIO to help US troops direct robots with mind: A team headed by Dr Gaurav Sharma, senior research scientist at Battelle - a Columbus-based global research and development organization - is among six teams to win grants to develop brain-machine interfaces. Sharma, who hails from Meerut, has been tasked with developing a minimally invasive neural interface for the US military. The 40-year-old will lead the project that aims to develop a nanotransducer to that effect. The nanotransducer can be temporarily introduced into the body via injection so that the brain is able to communicate through a helmet-based transceiver. The system has been named BrainSTORMS (Brain System to Sharma, who completed his Masters in Mechanical Engineering from Rutgers University in New Jersey and holds a PhD in Nanotechnology from Boston's Northeastern University, was instrumental in development of a neuroprosthetic technology named NeuroLife which had made headlines in 2016 when the system enabled an accident victim who was paralyzed from waist down to control his limbs using his thoughts.

17. S-VYASA Founder Dr. H. R. Nagendra Dedicates New Yoga Center to Houston Community: The Bengaluru-based S-VYASA, or Swami Vivekananda Yoga Anusandhana Samsthana, opened a new yoga center April 27 at the West Oaks Mall in Houston, Texas, in the presence of its founder and Chancellor Dr. H. R. Nagendra, yoga teachers and students. The “phones in meditation mode” policy set the tone for the event and the Vedic chanting by VishwarupaNanjudappa and Srikhanta Parmeshwara further elevated the positive energy in the room.

In his address, Guruji spoke of the great strides in yoga awareness and its practice, not only in Bharat but around the world and credited this to his student Pradhan Mantri Narendra Modi’s personal interest and push in the project.

18. Kenya: Hindu Religious & Service Centre ( H.R.S.C )  School feeding project has completed 10 years and at the moment centre is   serving mid-day meals in 62 schools for 18,000 students. Due to this service the daily attendance of students is increased remarkably and also their concentration in studies improved which results in better grade achieved by the students. 

To motivate the students HRSC distribute trophies to schools based on their performances in different competition organized for the students on various subjects.

HRSC also helped many schools to setup library. HRSC also provide text books, exercise books, biro pens, erasers, and sharpeners on regular basis. It also looks after the schools with basic facilities like water problems by providing resources for water harvesting and also looks after sanitation through construction of toilets, etc. 

HRSC has also planted 100 Mango Trees in more than 30 schools.

19. World Hindu Council of America to Hold Threads 2019 Conference in Boston November 1 to 3: The World Hindu Council of America has announced THREADS 2019, a unique conference with one audacious goal: To tell the story of the Hindu American. Hindus immigrated to America from all corners of the world, and today are deeply interwoven in the fabric of America. They have enriched America with many far-ranging contributions in such diverse fields as science, technology, entrepreneurship, medicine, holistic living, education, arts, public service and journalism.
THREADS 2019 will bring together accomplished Hindu Americans from diverse fields to share their stories and journeys, to appreciate the opportunities offered to them by their adopted country, and to engage with each other and explore ideas for brighter and better future for all Americans. THREADS 2019 will be held on November 1-3, 2019 in Boston, MA. For more information, please visit: www.threads2019.org.

20. UK law secures Sikhs’ right to carry kirpans: The UK government has passed an amendment by which Sikhs in the country will be allowed to carry kirpans and use it during religious and cultural functions. ‘The Offensive Weapons Bill’ received the royal assent this week. The bill aims at tackling rising knife crime in the UK and it become an act of law after receiving the Royal Assent of Queen Elizabeth II on  May 16.The bill had been amended late last year to ensure that it would not impact the right of the British Sikh community to possess and supply kirpans, or religious swords.
Large kirpans, with blades over 50-cm, are used by the community during religious ceremonies in gurdwaras as well as for ceremonies involving the traditional Sikh Gatka martial art. They would have fallen foul of the new bill on the possession of large blades without the amendment, which has now been agreed.

21. Bharatiya American Students Dominate National Geographic Bee Winning Top 3 Spots; NiharJanga Claims National Title: A trio of Bharatiya American students emerged as the top three finalists in the 31st annual National Geographic GeoBee held in Washington, D.C., May 22, with Nihar Janga outdueling Atreya Mallanna and Rishi Kumar to claim the national prize. Janga, an eighth grader at Canyon Ridge Middle School in Austin, Texas, correctly answered “Finnmark” to the question, “One-third of Norway’s northernmost country is in what plateau?”The correct answer in the 10th question of the championship round against Mallanna, a sixth grader at William Diamond Middle School in Lexington, Massachusetts, gave him the national crown.

22. Sanskrit classes IN UAE: Samskrita Bharati operates across the UAE, mostly from homes, and teaches Sanskrit for free."First housewives learn and then share the joy of learning with children. And we are not charging any fees. There are classes being held in 15 to 16 homes in Abu Dhabi. Housewives inform students about schedules through WhatsApp. A class with some seven to eight students is held at the Bharatiya Embassy every Friday. "Demand for learning Sanskrit is on the rise here. We need more teachers as awareness is spreading," said Kalyani Venkataraman, who leads Samskrita Bharati in Abu Dhabi. Courses are divided into four levels, and some 500 housewives have passed the certification course so far.

23. HEAD OF HINDU MONASTERY OF AFRICA PASSES AWAY: Swami Satyanand Saraswati Head of the Hindu Monastery of Africa breathed his last in the early hours of May 28, 2019. Swami Satyanand Saraswati was taken ill about a week ago and had been on admission at Korte-Bu Teaching Hospital, where he, unfortunately, transited peacefully. 

Swami Satyanand Saraswati was initiated by his Guru Swami Ghananand Saraswati into the Divine Order of Sannyasi on February 12, 2012.He was a Ghanaian born Catholic and in his adult life became a Hindu and worked for the Hindu Dharma for over 35 years.

24. SHRI VISHWA NIKETAN: Pravas: Dr Ram Vaidya has returned to UK after finishing his pravas to Japan. Visitors: Yogesh Hinduja - Singapore.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Every one must take care while walking, talking that no action of his will even slightly cause damage to the goal or work of the Sangh, in any way.– From Patheya  (The collection of sayings of Dr. K.B. Hedgewar)