\ SAMVAD संवाद

श्री  विश्व निकेतन SHRI VISHWA NIKETAN

 Jyeshtha Shukla 6, Vik. Samvat 2078, Yugabda 5123:16 June, 2021: SM 3006 (For Private Circulation Only)


1. FESTIVALS: RATH YATRA: The festival of Puri Rath Yatra is associated with Bhagwan Jagannath, one of the incarnations of Bhagwan Vishnu. Ratha Yatra falls on Ashadh Shukla 2, 12th July this year.

In one of the oldest Ratha Yatra of the world, the statues of Bhagwan Jagannath and his siblings (Devi Subhadra and Bhagwan Balabhadra) are decorated and brought to cover a 3-km-long journey (from Jagannath Temple to the Gundicha Temple) in chariots drawn by hundreds of devotees, every year.
Jagannatha literally means Lord of the Universe. Jagannatha temple is one of the four Hindu pilgrimage centers known as Char Dham pilgrimages that a Hindu is expected to visit in one's lifetime. Interestingly, this religious procession is also known as Chariot Festival, Navadina Yatra, Gundicha Yatra, or Dasavatara. -GoTop

2. MAHARANA PRATAP JAYANTI CELEBRATIONS AT UDAIPUR: RSS Sarkaryavaha Dattatreya Hosabale inaugurated 9 days Maharana Pratap birth anniversary program at Pratap Gaurav Kendra Udaipur on 13th June.
Speaking virtually at the program he said, “ Udaipur is a pilgrimage of our national ethos, culture and history. Mentioning the name of Maharana Pratap and his valour instills love for country in every Bharatiya.” Reminiscing his supreme bravery in Haldighati battle, Dattatreya mentioned that Rana Pratap never lost to Mughals and true history needs to be taught and publicized. A documentary on Rana Pratap made by Anurag Saxena was also released online during the program. -GoTop

3. BHARATIYA EMBASSY IN BAHRAIN AND BICAS KICK START INTERNATIONAL DAY OF YOGA 2021: Bahrain India Cultural and Arts Services (BICAS) under the patronage of the Bharatiya embassy in Bahrain kick started the programs for International Yoga day 2021 with a virtual event based on the theme “Holistic Approach to Yoga for Immunity” on 4th June. A number of Bahraini and Bharatiya yoga enthusiasts including the members of various Bharatiya associations participated in the event.
Bharatiya Ambassador Piyush Srivastava opened the event in which President of ICCR—Indian Council for Cultural Relations, Dr. Vinay Sahastrabuddhe was the Chief Guest. Royal Humanitarian Foundation Secretary General Dr. Mustafa Al Sayed and Art of Living trainer Dr. Nisha Manikandan also spoke during the program. Dr. Sahasrabuddhe said that Yoga was completely non-denominational and holistic. It was traditional and equally modern, an ever-evolving science of human well-being.
Dr. Sayed highlighted the importance of yoga for the global community and its benefits during the Covid 19 pandemic. -GoTop

4. HSS USA – SWAYAMSEVAKS SUPPORTED VACCINATIONS PROGRAMS IN THE EIGHT STATES: HSS swayamsevaks offered “Vaccination Sewa” in their communities. The core concept was to ensure equitable access to vaccination and that everyone stays safe and healthy.
HSS swayamsevaks reached out to communities, brought awareness on COVID-19 related vaccination, and helped the vaccination centers to make the regional vaccination program successful.
HSS Philadelphia and Sewa jointly deployed 351 volunteers logging 2400 hours of support at the Center City Vaccination Center and 21 volunteers providing 98.5 hours at the Esperanza Community Vaccination Center.
Similar efforts have been done at various locations including Greenbelt, Maryland, Charlotte, NC, Schaumburg Township and Hoffman Estates Village near Chicago, Illinois, San Antonio and Dallas, Texas etc. One unique feature was that HSS volunteers provided vaccination access to minority Nepali and Bhutanese communities with limited mobility due to lack of cars or driving skills.-GoTop

5. HIGHWAY CLEANUP AT NAPERVILLE AURORA: HSS Vivekananda Shakha & Sewa LEAD 2021 team successfully completed their first Adopt-A-Highway cleanup on Eola Rd on 7th June between E. New York Street and Bennett Place. There were 21 Karyakartas helping out including several children.
A total distance of 4 miles up and down was cleaned and there was a meet'n'greet with Alderman Shweta Baid (Aurora 10th Ward) and Patty Smith Alderman Ward 8 (Aurora 8th Ward)!! -GoTop

6. HINDU SEVIKA SAMITI UK: Hindu Sevika Samiti UK organized a Mahila Karyakarta Varg on 5th June which was attended by sevikas who had been actively involved in Vibhag Mahila Shibirs and E-Book Launch. Total Sankhya of the Varg was 88 Mahilas from 9 Vibhags.
Dr. Ram Vaidya, sahsamyojak Vishwa Vibhag spoke on Understanding our core work - dharmic values and a knowledgeable Bauddhik was delivered on real life inspiration by Mahila Samanvay sahsamyojak Kum Bhagyashree Sathaye.
This varg was followed by Mahila Ganavesh Shakha on 6th June with sankhya of 125 sevikas from 9 Vibhags and 30 nagars.
An enlightening Bauddhik was given by Ma. Alkatai Inamdar, sahkaryavahika Rashtra Sevika Samiti on “Shakha - A Place of Evolvement”. This was attended by all UK Samiti Adhikaris. -GoTop

7. COVID SEWA IN NEPAL: HSS Nepal and Marwari Sewa Kendra (MSK) distributed ration kits to 230 Chepang community families on 6th June in 8 villages of Chitwan District. HSS district Sanghchalak Narayan Chalise, Sah Sambhag Karyavah Govind Paudel, President of MSK Narayangarh Dulichand Dargo were present on the occasion.
On 11th June HSS Nepal’s Kaski branch distributed ration kits to 27 needy families in Pohara. Janjati Kalyan Ashram and Sewa International Nepal provided medical relief material including oxygen concentrators to Rubi valley Gaupalika for their 15 bed covid hospital. Sewa International and HSS Nepal coordinated with each other to provide oxygen concentrator in Kathmandu, Nepal Ganj, Bhairahawa, Lumjhung and other cities of the Nepal. -GoTop

8. SWAYAMSEVAKS TURNED THEIR CARS INTO AMBULANCES: Volunteers of the RSS carried out Sewa in various ways during the Covid second wave. In Himachal Pradesh’s Bilaspur, swayamsevaks have changed their cars into ambulances and handed them over to the administration.
Due to this noble initiative, a car ambulance will be available to the infected families in Sadar, Jhandutta and Swarghat health blocks of Bilaspur district at any time when needed. These cars turned ambulances were handed over to RSS Prant Karyavah Kismat Kumar and Chief Medical Officer Dr. Prakash Dadoch. -GoTop

9. 4 RSS SWAYAMSEVAKS PERFORMED LAST RITES OF 205 COVID VICTIMS IN VIDISHA: When the second wave of Covid-19 hit in April-May, many shmashans fell short of space and manpower and alternate arrangements had to be made.

One Kuldeep Sharma, 35, had gone to Bhorgat shmashan in Vidisha for the last rites of a friend's grandmother. What he saw there, it changed his outlook. There were no people to perform the last rites of the Covid-19 victims. He requested his fellow swayamsevaks to assist the family members of the victims in making arrangements for the rites. Sanjay Prajapati, Dhruv and Surendra agreed readily. They made many personal sacrifices to do this sewa. They couldn’t go home regularly and live normal lives as it would endanger the lives of other family members. For fourteen asthi kalash, there were no claimants. So, these four friends traveled to Prayagraj to perform asthi visarjan. -GoTop

10. SEVA BHARATI AMBULANCES LAUNCHED IN ANDHRA: As part of the activities of Seva Bharati , 4 Ambulances under the auspices of Chalasani Malathi Memorial Trust and a Mahaprasthanam Radham (Corpse van ) donated by Bolomal Dharamdas Charitable trust and Vikas Tarangini China Jiyyar Swamy trust were handed over for service at Sishu Vidyamandiram, Satyanarayana Puram East Godavari on 5th June. Speaking at the program, Vellampalli Srinivas, Minister for Endowments, Govt of Andhra Pradesh, appreciated the work of Seva Bharati.
Dr. Murali Krishna, Coordinator of the Aarogya Mitra explained the activities of Seva Bharati and services during the Corona second wave viz distribution of 10800 food packets, distributing 8069 Ayurveda kits, a 24x7 call center with Doctor, Oxygen Concentrators and Covid isolation centers. In this program Seva bharati Vijayawada website www.sevabharathivja.org was also launched. -GoTop

11. BHARATIYA PEACEKEEPERS’ KEY ROLE IN CONGO: Bharatiya army personnel working with the UN Peacekeeping Forces in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo) have played a key role in reaching out to the local population and saving UN assets amid a major volcanic eruption from Mount Nyiragongo.
Mount Nyiragongo is an active volcano which started spewing lava on 22nd May sparking panic in nearby Goma town with a population of 600,000. The Bharatiya army personnel are part of the MONUSCO or United Nations Organization Mission in the DR Congo with Brigade Headquarters located adjacent to the Goma airfield. Within hours of the eruption, the Bharatiya brigade jumped into action to ensure there is no threat to UN and national assets and also made sure real-time updates on the volcanic eruption were passed on to United Nations. The timely information by Bharatiya peacekeepers, also known as "blue helmets" helped in bringing orderly civilian evacuation. -GoTop

12. UK BHARATIYAS IN QUEEN’S BIRTHDAY HONOURS LIST: Healthcare, community efforts and vaccine development are in the spotlight for the Queen’s Birthday Honours List this year, with several British Bharatiya getting honoured for their services to country’s Covid-19 response.
Kolkata-born Divya Chadha Manek has been honoured with an Order of the British Empire (OBE) for her involvement in the research and development of vaccines and the resulting clinical trials. OBEs have also gone to Jasvinder Singh Rai, Founder and Chairman of the Sikh Recovery Network for services to the Sikh community, and Jasjyot Singh of the Lloyds Banking Group services for financial services during pandemic.
Those honoured as Members of the British Empire (MBE) include Devina Banerjee, from the Vaccine Taskforce,; Anoop Jivan Chauhan, Professor of Respiratory Medicine and Executive Director of Research, Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust; and Dr Ananthakrishnan Raghuram, Consultant Physician, Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. -GoTop

13. CHILD PRODIGY ISHWAR WINS UK PM AWARD: “I do hope more people will adopt yogic lifestyle and reap the benefits; and that Yoga and meditation will be included in the national school curriculum in the future,” says 11-year-old Ishwar Sharma.
He has led daily Yoga classes for 40 children across 14 countries during the coronavirus lockdown, an achievement recognized by UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson with the daily Points of Light award on 2nd June.
Ishwar Sharma, from Sevenoaks in Kent, south-east England, started taking up Yoga when he was three years old after seeing his father practice daily and is a three-time World Yoga Champion. His autism and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) has propelled him to help children through Yoga, particularly those with special needs like himself.
"You have brought the joy of Yoga to hundreds of children globally during lockdown. I was particularly inspired to hear how you have helped children with special needs enjoy the activity you enjoy and excel at," Johnson said in a personal letter to Sharma. -GoTop

14. HAL MANUFACTURED HELICOPTERS INDUCTED AT INS DEGA: Three ‘322 Dega Flight’ helicopters were officially inducted in the navy through a ceremony on 7th June in the presence of Vice Admiral Ajendra Bahadur Singh, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Eastern Naval Command (ENC).
With the induction of these Maritime Reconnaissance and Coastal Security (MRCS) helicopters, the ENC got a major boost towards enhancing the capabilities of the force, in pursuit of the maritime interests of the nation. These helicopters, built by Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd, are state-of-the-art flying machines and constitute a major step in the quest for “Atma Nirbhar Bharat”.
These helicopters are fitted with modern surveillance radar and electro-optical equipment, which enable them to undertake the role of maritime reconnaissance in addition to providing long-range Search and Rescue, both by day and night. A removable Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU) is also fitted on ALH MK III helicopters to airlift critically ill patients. -GoTop

15. DRDO COVID HOSPITAL STARTED IN SRINAGAR: A 500-bed COVID Hospital set up by Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) at Khonmoh, Srinagar has become operational on 12th June. The hospital was set-up by DRDO in a short span of 17 days and is funded by PM CARES Fund. 
This COVID facility includes 125 ICU beds with ventilators of which 25 are exclusively reserved for children. "Continuous oxygen supply is available for all 500 beds from 62 KL Liquid Medical Oxygen storage tanks. Hospital management and doctors and para-medical staff to run the facility are provided by administration of Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir.
Jammu and Kashmir Lt governor Manoj Sinha had inaugurated this hospital on 9th June. -GoTop

16. BHARAT-KUWAIT SIGN PACT FOR PROTECTION OF RIGHTS OF BHARATIYA DOMESTIC HELPS IN KUWAIT: In a major development, Bharat inked a pact with Kuwait to protect the rights of Bharatiya domestic workers in Kuwait on 11th June. The pact will protect the rights of Bharatiya domestic workers by introducing employment contracts that provide them with the protection of Law. The MoU focuses on the signing of contracts that ensure the rights and obligations of both Kuwaiti employers and Bharatiya domestic workers. The MoU was signed by Bharatiya Ambassador Sibi George and Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs of Kuwait Majdi Ahmad Al-Dhafiri in presence of visiting External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and his Kuwaiti counterpart Sheikh Ahmad Nasser Al-Mohammad Al-Sabah.
The MoU brings the Bharatiya domestic workers in Kuwait within the ambit of a legal framework that streamlines their recruitment and provides them with the protection of the law. According to the Ministry, over one million Bharatiyas reside in Kuwait. -GoTop

17. STATUE OF MAHARSHI PARASHER UNVEILED AT PANTNAGAR: Vice President of NITI aayog Dr Rajiv Kumar unveiled a statue of sage Parasher in the precincts of GB Pant University of Agriculture and Technolgy at Pantnagar near Rudrapur Uttarakhand on 9th June. It is to be noted that sage Parasher is credited with an ancient treatise ‘Krishi Parasher’ on agriculture.
It describes in detail various aspects related to agriculture viz soil, seeds, rains and water harvesting, use of cattle in ploughing, manures and so on and is testimony to the developed agricultural practices in Bharat since ancient times. Vice Chencellor Dr Tej Pratap, Dean Dr Shivendra Kashyap and others were present at the program. -GoTop

18. OBITUARY—SIR ANEROOD JUGNAUTH MAURITIUS: Padma Vibhushan Sir Anerood Jugnauth , GCSK, KCMG, QC former President and Prime Minister of Mauritius passed away on 3rd June.
He was 91. Barrister by education, Sir Anerood Jugnauth was doyen of Mauritian politics and had a tumultuous political career for over seven decades. He always strived to strengthen the roots with the land and culture of Bharat, which is the ancestral land for all ‘Pravasi Bharatiyas’ migrated to distant places like Mauritius during the British Raj. He was awarded Pravasi Bharatiya Samman award in 2003 and Padma Vibhushan in 2020. He cherished deep personal bond with veteran Sangh pracharak Chamanlal ji and always mentioned about it. Several Sangh adhikaris including Pu Rajjubhayya ji , visiting Mauritius had called on him and experienced his warmth and humility. His son Pravind Jugnauth is presently holding the office of Hon Prime Minister of Mauritius. -GoTop

19. SHRI VISHWA NIKETAN: Pravas: Visitors:

FOOD FOR THOUGHT: A person can rise through the efforts of his own mind; or draw himself down, in the same manner. Because each person is his own friend or enemy. — Srimadbhagwat Gita   -GoTop

Dr Boonda Singh

Lachhman Das was a young Hindu Rajput boy, who became an ascetic, and came to be called as Madho Dass Bairagi. He was later baptised as a Sikh by Sri Guru Gobind Singh, and became Banda Singh Bahadur- who was the founder of 1st independent Sikh rule in Punjab, despite the vast Mughal Empire around.
There is a lot of folklore around why Madho Dass chose to become a disciple of Guru Gobind Singh- the most common one being that he was an evil proud man who used to make a person sit on his bed, and the bed would be lifted up to the roof by his spiritual powers in order to harass the guest. One day when Guru Gobind Singh came to his house, he tried to do the same trick, but failed, and as a result his pride was vanquished, and being humbled he got impressed by the Guru and became his disciple.
 Another folklore is that Guru Gobind Singh came to his house, and along with his disciples, he slaughtered the goats of Madho Dass and cooked meat. When Madho Dass returned home, he was incensed as he was a vegetarian Hindu. Guru Gobind Singh reasoned with him that when he was angry at the slaughter of animals, how could be ignore the slaughter of so many Hindus by Aurangzeb, and this argument convinced Madho Dass to become a Sikh and take up weapons.
Yet, folklore will remain folklore, and although it may sound to be a good story to read and recite, and to impress, it may not necessarily be a true reflection of the actual event.

What had then made Madho Dass Bairagi become a Sikh?
 As his background, Lachhman Dass was a very compassionate Rajput, and during his childhood days, he was interested in hunting. In one of his hunting expeditions, he had shot a pregnant deer, which died in front of him, and the new born baby deer she delivered also died soon after. This moved Lachhman Dass into such a state of severe repentance that he gave up his Rajput outlook, and became an ascetic by the name of Madho Dass Bairagi.
He was a true Hindu, and followed the principles of Hinduism to the core. He was a very wise and learned man, and was aware of what was going around in India at that time, including the forcible conversion of Hindus to Islam as was resolved by Aurangzeb, the Mughal emperor of that time who had taken an oath that he would convert entire India into an Islamic nation. He was also aware of the plight of the Kashmiri Brahmins who were forcibly being converted to Islam, or being persecuted. At that time, the martyrdom of Sri Guru Teg Bahadur had sent ripples all over India. The selfless act of Guru Teg Bahadur was not only appreciated, but it also gave a clear message to Hindus all over India that their faith was in grave danger.
Following that, the baptism of Hindus to adopt Khalsa brotherhood was also seen as a single biggest development to challenge the might of Emperor Aurangzeb. The only other force at that time to reckon with was that of Shivaji and the valiant Marathas. It is widely believed that the purpose of Guru Gobind Singh was to join hands with the Marathas.
 The martyrdom of the 4 Sahibzaadas of Guru Gobind Singh had created an image of Guru Gobind Singh as a selfless and valiant spiritual leader who led with an example, and one who had the grit and determination to stop the forcible spread of Islam. There was no doubt left in the mind of the common citizenry of India, that the greatest hope to save the Hindu Dharma was to be a part of the Sikh Khalsa force under Guru Gobind Singh. By becoming a Sikh at that time did not mean that one ceased to be a Hindu. The persecution of nascent Sikhs borne out of Hinduism was also continuing at an almost similar rate as they were being inducted into the Sikh force. Thousands of Hindus were adopting the Khalsa baptism, fighting the war, laying their lives, and new ones were taking their place. As the movement of Khalsa was geared towards stopping the spread of forcible conversions to Islam, it was a movement driven and sustained by Hindus to join the Khalsa forces and not necessarily at the cost of losing their identity as a Hindu, since at that time there was no boundary demarcating a Sikh from a Hindu, and most households had their elder sons becoming the protector Khalsa for the family.
The structure of families at that time was such that Khalsa brotherhood became a defence line for the society, and Hindus came forwards to get at least one of their children, preferably the older one, to adopt Sikhism. There was no question of giving up Hinduism by doing that as it was never considered that these were very distinctly separate religions. It would make no sense for Hindus to adopt a different religion of Sikhism, and then die fighting as a Sikh, because if changing a religion was the need of the day, then Hindus would have easily chosen the easy path instead and become a Muslim, be in the good books of Aurangzeb, and then live comfortably. Then why did the Hindus at that time adopt Sikhism? That would only be possible, if they did not feel that Sikhism was an alien religion or a threat to their identity and ideology, and that by adopting Sikhism, they were not going to adopt a diametrically opposite religion as Islam, but would instead be adopting an ideology which was a mere off shoot of Hinduism itself.
At this point of time, when Guru Gobind Singh approached Madho Dass, the story of sacrifice of his father Guru Teg Bahadur, and also the rest of his family was already household news at that time.
The Rajput in Madho Dass was alive as he realised that time had come for him to take the role of a warrior. The reason he chose to become a disciple of the 10th Guru, and what he said was something like this:
‘’I have heard about the sacrifice of your father Sri Guru Teg Bahadur for the sake of saving Hinduism. Now it is the duty of every Hindu to repay this debt to the Guru, by joining the Khalsa movement started by you, his son. I have always thought of repaying this debt, and would like to offer my life to you for it to be used to save Dharma, as a tribute to Guru Teg Bahadur and his martyrdom. From today I am your Banda.’’
The main pillar of Khalsa brotherhood was laid by Banda Singh Bahadur, who carried the weapons and the hukamnama of the Guru, and during his march to Sirhind, all the Hindu/Sikh peasantry took baptism and became Khalsa. Now there was a new ray of hope for these people who had been suffering religious persecution under Mughals. Soon after Banda Singh Bahadur had left Nanded, and was marching towards Sirhind, news arrived that the 10th Guru, Sri Guru Gobind Singh ji had been martyred.
 Under the leadership of Banda Singh Bahadur, the newly baptised Khalsa forces derived from the Hindus in the belt of India from central to North India won the battle of Sirhind, and established the 1st independent Sikh rule in Punjab.
Much before the advent of Banda Singh Bahadur, when Sri Guru Gobind Singh created the Khalsa in Anandpur Sahib in 1699, the first 5 people who became baptised as the 1st Khalsa, also known an Punj Pyaaras, were derived from the Hindu community itself- from Lahore, Jagannath Puri, Meerut, Dwarka and Bidar. These were Hindus derived from all 4 corners of the country.
Therefore the martial Khalsa movement was a self-sustained movement under the leadership of Guru Gobind Singh, and subsequently under Banda Singh Bahadur, where it was Hindus only who sustained it, and the ranks were not derived from Muslims or Christians. Hinduism is a very diverse religion, and is not only about being a Shudra or a Brahmin or a Kayastha or a Rajput, or about following rituals. The key concept is that there has been a Ram, a Krishna, a Parsuram- all have come in some form or the other and saved Dharma. The movement launched by Guru Gobind Singh was a similar one. Sikhism eliminates the differences of all mankind, but that does not come at the cost of removing the Hindu connection from it as the source is derived from Hindus itself, and not from any other community. An association with the parent religion of Hinduism will not take away the global outlook of being a Sikh, or dilute it and reduce it to being a ritualistic Hindu- because Hinduism itself is a vast religion and concept from ancient Indovedic times.
The ramifications of Hinduism also include Buddhism and Jainism which are atheist religions- and Sikhism is one off shoot but not atheist, and it cannot be denied that this off shoot is attached to the mainstream parent trunk of Hinduism just as Jainism is. The Sikhism off shoot has no connections with the Abrahamic religion because the fundamental core concept is different from them, but is same as that of Hinduism as mentioned in Sri Guru Granth Sahib.
Therefore the core principle of Sikhism is derived from the same Indovedic concept, and the movement to protect Dharma was a movement where the people who fought and died were sourced from the Hindus themselves, and not from Turks or Afghans. The bond between a Hindu and a Sikh are inseparable as they are sourced from a same genetic origin and have similar Indovedic core values. (https://www.newsbharati.com/Encyc/2021/6/7/Banda-Singh-Bahadur.html ) -GoTop

SHRI VISHWA NIKETAN vishwav@bol.net.in http://shrivishwaniketan.blogspot.com