Wednesday, December 30, 2009



Poornima, Kali Yugaabda 5109, Sarvajit Maasi 8 (February 20, 2008)


A small town in the southern part of Tamilnadu, Bharat. Even as a senior RSS worker was busy organising a camp for 1,000 swayamsevaks there in February 2008, he received a call from the local police officer. The caller wanted the presence of the Sangh worker at the police station urgently. The Karyakartha hesitated a little as his hands were full just then. But the officer repeatedly urged him to come over. So he went to the police station. There he was given a unique responsibility by the officer. The Sangh worker, also a well known public figure in town, was to persuade a young Hindu woman not to fall into the trap of Islamic proselytisers and remain a Hindu. In a moment of depression, the educated woman had been enticed by a few Muslims who took her to another town. The woman’s parents lodged a complaint with the police to trace their missing daughter. The police investigated and rescued her from a Madarasa in the other town. Now she had to be rehabilitated. That job was done by the Sangh worker successfully. He pointed out to her the dangers of conversion by allurement and listed the challenges faced by Hindu society. She gradually understood. He appealed to her to come forward to serve the Hindu society. She whole-heartedly agreed to it. All concerned were happy and thanked the Sangh worker who said Namaste to all and quickly went back to his camp arrangement work.

As told to team PANCHAAMRITAM by a Sangh Adhikari.


Formerly, Jaswants were becoming Jacks. Now, it is the other way round. Jacks are becoming Jaswants. This is how it happened: Indian IT companies are there in almost all countries today - from Japan to Mexico, South Africa to Australia. They employ local citizens. It means training them about the company’s work culture. Teaching them the nuances of Indian culture and society is equally important. Wipro, Cognizant and NIIT do this. It is mandatory for foreign employees of Wipro Technology to visit India. They are given a cultural orientation about India. Cognizant has an e-learning tool for its foreign employees.NIIT sees to it that things like annual day and events in the social calendar of the company are followed across the globe uniformly. It is important to make the exercise interesting and fun. The Indian MNCs ensure that as well. So, as more Indian IT firms spread out to newer geographies, more and more people will transform India style.

Based on a report in THE TIMES OF INDIA, Bengaluru, February 5, 2008


Shri Praveen Kumar ‘Insaaf’, 32, is a photographer by profession. He is a resident of Doda town of Jammu-Kashmir state, Bharat.For the last 8 years he has been setting apart Rs. 20 every day from his earnings. At the end of the year, he buys foodgrains with this money and distributes it among the needy and the handicapped in the Siratangal locality of Badarwah in Jammu. To achieve this, he keeps himself away from smoking and drinking. Initially, his mother Vidya Devi was annoyed by he son’s behaviour. But with the passage of time, she began to appreciate his good nature. She is proud of him now.

Based on a report in TRIKUTA SANKALP, Jammu, Feburary 2008.


Dr. Muzaffar Ali Shahmiri, faculty of the department of Urdu, Hyderabad Central University (HCU), was surprised to find that the word ‘miyan’ is neither Urdu nor Deccani Urdu but has Samskrit origin. He cites an online Urdu dictionary of Pakistan to prove this( He also mentions a hindavi tradition in Deccani Urdu that reached its peak during the regime of Ibrahim Aadil Shah II (1580-1626 AD) of the Bijapur dynasty who authored ‘Nauras’, a book that depicts the traditions of music, song and dance. The book is profuse with Samskrit terms of the diffrent forms of art. The book was so popular that poets used the word Nauras as their surname. A township by name Nauraspur was built in which a complete sector was allotted to musicians. Ibrahim Aadil Shah expressed great repect for the goddess of education, Saraswati. He seeks her blessings thus: “nauras sur jug jug jyoti amar sarva guni / yu sat Sarasti mata, Ibrahim Prasad bhai” (Oh my mother, Saraswati, because of your manifold blessings on us, svaras of Nauras would live longer in this world). Ibrahim Aadil Shah sings the glory of Ganesha and Shiva also.

From a paper presented by Dr. Muzaffar Ali Shahmiri at a national seminar on ‘Relevance of Samskritam’ at the Hyderabad Central University, Hyderabad (AP), in January 2008.



A school in a Vanavasi (tribal) hamlet near Idukki, Kerala, Bharat. A poor student steals money belonging to a teacher. Smt. Meenakshi Kutty, the Headmistress, gave lashes with a cane on herself till she fainted. The boy who stole came running to her, crying “Amme, Amme”. His heart was touched and the change was achieved, without the cane touching any student in the school.

Based on a report in DINAMALAR February 9, 2008



Amavaasya Kali 5109 Sarvajit Maasi 24 (March 7, 2008)


This is at least a decade old story. Smt. Binny Bai sells vegetables on the roadside opposite Gandhi Memorial government general hospital in Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh, Bharat). She is particularly pained to see the plight of the relatives of inpatients. Those poor villagers wait for days and weeks in biting cold and scorching sun. She had married off her only daughter and has no encumbrances. She sells off her small landed property and builds a shelter just near the hospital for the stay of the poor persons attending on their near and dear undergoing treatment in the hospital. At a function to honour this kind hearted lady, the Chief Minister of the day (Shri. Digvijay Singh) announced a Rs. 1,000 monthly honorarium to Binny Bai, which the old woman politely refused saying "after all, it is a punya karya that I did", meaning she did not expect any reward.

Based on media reports of the time.


A Mahapanchayat of villages is known as the Sakal Panchayat Palam-360 in which Chiefs of the 365 villages dotting the Capital of Bharat (Delhi) met at Palam village on February 28, 2008. The meet was attended by representatives of 36 communities, including Jats, Gurjjars and Rajputs from 96 villages. President of Palam 360 Kishan Singh Solanki said if any village does not follow the following guidelines, it will be debarred from being a member of Palam-360. (By virtue of taking this decision on February 28, the Mahapanchayat also declared this day as Samaj Sudhar Divas (Social Reforms Day). This village conglomerate was established by social worker Choudhary Lotan Singh, whose 41st death anniversary was observed on that day): "1.Girls or women from the families can attend. 2. There will only be day ceremonies. 3. There cannot be more then 11 people in the ring ceremonies. 4. Dowry should not be asked for or given. 5. The marriage should always take place between people belonging to different gotras. 6. There will be no long baarats, no extra expenses. 7. Liquor will not be served. 8. Disc jokey will not be entertained. 9. The female fetus will not be killed".

Based on a report by By Shri. Neeraj Chauhan of the EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE on February 29, 2008


A picture carried by a Chennai (Tamilnadu, Bharat) paper showed hundreds of earnest Plus Two students, hands joined in prayer, taking part in a special yagam performed at the Madhava Perumal Koil in Mylapore, Chennai, to get good results in their board examination. Schoolchildren are also known to make a beeline for the Hayagrivar Sannithanam, a 400-year-old temple in Singaperumal Kovil, a south Chennai suburb. Hall-tickets, books, even pens and pencils are brought along to be blessed. A popular offering at this temple, which has become a student "haunt" in the last six years is a cardamom garland. Legend has it that the deity was the goddess of learning Saraswati's guru. Prakash Bhattacharya, who along with brother Balaji is the pujari here, says, "Exam days see parents and students crowding the temple. Students who are weak in studies come every month and sometimes even every week." Interestingly even principals of schools come here along with children from their respective schools.

Based on a report in, February 28, 2008.


On February 2, 2006, barely 3 km away from Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh Bharat), Vandana Yadav, now 13, went to the fields with her younger brother. Three goons tried to molest her. She slapped one of them; one of them whipped out a knife. She told her brother to go to the village and get help as she fought them. She was stabbed 17 times before the men fled. She was in hospital for 15 days. It did not dent her steely resolve. She was determined to get justice. Despite threats she identified them after their arrest. Her father, a milkman, stood by her. Vandana wants to be a police officer -- to protect the dignity of women and make their lives safer. She should know -- she has fought the monster, and won. She is the winner of Gita Chopra Award for Bravery for 2007.

Based on a report by Shri. Onkar Singh on January 25, 2007

in (Idea: Shri. Venkat)


Palani in Tamilnadu, Bharat, is one of the six celebrated abodes of Lord Kartikeya. Shri. Ardhanari is the Peshkar of the Temple. Out of his salary, he has built a vehicle to carry unclaimed dead bodies to the crematorium costing Rs. 25,000. He found that frequently a few old and infirm beggars who throng the pilgrim centre and some of the mentally retarded destitutes die on the roadside in Palani. He informed the temple administration in writing that they can deduct the cost of cremating unclaimed bodies from his salary. For 11 years this went on. As the cost has increased from Rs. 100 to Rs. 300 per body, the temple administration has come forward to make good the gap of Rs. 200. In a couple of years, Ardhanari will be retired. He wants the punya karya to continue beyond that. He has planned to deposit a portion of his retirement benefits at the bank so that the interest accrued could be used for the funeral seva ever afterwards.

Based on a report by Shri. Srirangam Thirunavukkarasu in KALKI, Tamil weekly, October 14, 2007. (Idea Smt . Vasantha).



Poornima, Kali Yugaabda 5109, Sarvajit Panguni 8 (March 21, 2008)


The strength of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the premier organisation of Hindus in Bharat, is reflected in the number of shakhas (its branches) spread across all 500 plus districts in the country. The number, as in January 2008, was 40,781. Add to this the 8,039 weekly gatherings of swayamsevaks and the 6,551 monthly meets. The number of swayamsevaks who received training in the annual RSS worker training camps last May and after was 16,067. This includes the participants in the I, II and III year camps for young swayamsevaks, those in similar camps for elderly swayamsevaks as also in the camps for college student swayamsevaks. The mahasamadhi centenary of Swami Ramtirth was observed in shakhas throught the country last year. The figures are: 13,417 functions in 10,667 places. The 150 th anniversary of the great upheaval of 1857 was celebrated in all prants across Bharat. Of special significance is the effort of East Andhra prant swayamsevaks. They took the patriotic message of 1857 War of Indepedence to as many as 94,100 households. They arranged special student sessions to put across the message to students in which 93,270 boys and girls of 901 educational institutions (colleges, professional colleges and schools) participated.

Baesd on the report of Shri Mohan Bhagwat, Sarkaryawah of RSS,

at the March 2008 annual all-Bharat meet of the Sangh


Meet Lakshmi (name changed), the elder sister of Shri Sampatkumar, a handicapped person of Oorappakkam, a Chennai (Tamilnadu, Bharat) suburb. She had been refusing to give her consent for marriage over the years. Disgusted in arranging a suitable alliance for her, the brother took her to task one day. It was then she revealed the reason for her actions: “Dear brother, if I get married and go away to my in laws’ place, you will be left with no one to take care of you. So I rejected all the alliances you arranged for me”. Lakshmi continues to remain unmarried just to serve her brother.

As told to Team PANCHAAMRITAM by Tambaram Amma, mother of a swayamsevak


Rajeswari working as an LIC agent living in Vellakkovil near Erode meets all the educational expenses of three poor children. She has a habit of spotting persons with a liking for service activities. She promptly involves them in social service. Foe example, she arranged donors to sustain a free tuition class run by swayamsevaks in her place. She has the knack of identifying hunger by reading the face of even a stranger. She quickly secures a meal for the person leaving all other work aside. She is a devout Shiva devotee and observes maun vrat one day every week. But the unassuming manner of doing good to others marks her.

As told to Team PANCHAAMRITAM by Shri. Murugesan, coordinator of RSS service activities in North Tamilnadu


Smt Bharti Suryavanshi belongs to a Harijan family living in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, Bharat. She is the wife of a liquor shop assistant. She is pregnant. Smt Amita Jain, hailing from a well to do family in the town, has begun to take care of Bharti, taking her to the doctor every month, arranging nutritious food for her. More importantly, she conducts the traditional ‘goad bharayi’ (Valai Kaapu in Tmail) ceremony to express happiness of the community on the arrival of the expected child. Seva Bharati workers introduced Bharti to Amita, who has decided to provide motherly care till the child is born. 21 poor pregnant women from the socially backward sections in the town have been thus provided willing ‘mothers’ to each of them by Seva Bharati, Bhopal.

As told to Team PANCHAAMRITAM by a Seva Bharati worker


Amaavaasya, Kali Yugaabda 5109, Sarvajit Panguni 23 (April 5, 2008)


Professor Wang Zhicheng of Zhejiang University, China, is one of the outstanding scholars and translators of contemporary China. He has translated and published Swami Vivekananda’s teachings in Chinese. He says in an interview: “In the early 1990s, I read the Bhagavad Gita and some works by Shankara, some were available in Chinese but most in English. I enjoyed Shankara's philosophy, but I found the Gita especially spiritual and philosophical. And what surprised me was that at that time I was having certain difficulties in my personal life, and I found that I could solve them by studying the Gita! So I had the personal experience that it was a kind of guide in life, not just an abstract philosophical book.”

Based on an interview of Shri. Wang by Shri Alan Hunter who works at the Centre for the Study of Forgiveness and Reconciliation at Coventry University, U.K. Alan was formely Senior Lecturer in Chinese Studies at Leeds University. The interview was carried by VEDANTA KESARI (2007) of Sri Ramakrishna Math, Chennai – 4.


Men of Indian Army, while on a UN peacekeeping mission in Lebanon, have helped scores of Lebanese victims of landmines and cluster bombs to regain some mobility. They opened ‘Jaipur foot clinics’ in the middle of October 2007 and provided prosthetic foot fittings.They had treated 145 lebanese patients earlier in 2006. “In the light of positive response to that the Indian battalion decided to open another Jaipur foot clinic”’ said Major Sumit Sharma (THE HINDU, October 31, 2007). Soon India will set up a factory to manufacture Jaipur foot in Angola. This south African nation approached India and on humanitarian grounds, has agreed to set up and run an artificial limb factory in the capital city of Luanda. Nearly 5 lakh Angolans have lost their limbs in the 27 year old civil war (THE HINDU, April 6, 2008). (Developed and manufactured in Jaipur, ‘Jaipur foot’ costs much less than many other prostheic limbs available in the market while maintaining high quality. Jaipur foot was invented by Pramod Karan Sethi an orthopaedic surgeonalong with artisan Ram Chandra. Jaipur foot has revolutionized life for millions of landmine amputees. It is light and makes the mobility easy. the users will be able to run, climb trees and ride bicycles).


Place, Shri. Manjunatha temple, Dharmasthala (Karnataka, Bharat). A Hindu wedding is in progress. The purohit chants mantras while the bride Kareen Gunthor and bridegroom Lans John Brendish perform the Homam (havan). Shri Virendra Hegde, the trustee of the famous temple, is present. Kareen (28), a German, went to England to study Ayurveda. She met Lans, an Australian working in a bank. They fell in love . Both had come to Bharat to attend the wedding of Shri. Prasanna, a honorary lecturer in the college where Kareen studies. They observed evry aspect of the Hindu wedding ritual and decided to get married in the Hindu way. Shri. subramanian, Prasanna’s father, made arrangements for their wedding. The two Catholic Christians were thus united in wedlock, with Shri.Virendra Hegde offering the sacred thread to Lans John, who later tied the mangalasutra around Kareen’s neck.

Based on a report in DINAMALAR, April 3, 2008


Shri. Sarjoo is a cycle rikshaw driver. He hails from village Sohaval Sahseel near Ayodhya (Uttar Pradesh, Bharat). He could not go to school beyond class 8 owing to poverty in the family. Affected by polio, he is a physically challanged person. His wife Susheela had studied upto class 10 and she wanted to study further. Sarjoo understood. He ran from pillar to post in government offices to secure some schlarship for her. That proved to be futile. So, ignoring his handicap, he began working extra hours to earn the money needed for his wife’s education. She studied well and got the first rank in the intermediate examination. Sarjoo is more enthusiastic now. His rikshaw plies several hours more on the roads of Lucknow city, because its driver now dreams of securing an admission for Suseela in a college

Based on a report in DINAMALAR, October 17, 2007


Ten students of Post Graduate Programme for Executive (PGPX) at the Indian Institute of Management - Ahmedabad (IIM-A), the most prestigious management institute of the country, have taken to learning Sanskrit and by the end of the two-week crash course, most have even started conversing, well almost, in the language. "It was due to the initiative of Vaidyananthan Ramachandran, our classmate, that the course was introduced. It makes me feel really proud that I made a genuine attempt and even succeeded in learning one of the ancient languages in the world," says Raju Kumaravelu, one of the participants of the course. The course was conducted by instructors from Sanskrit Bharati, Ahmedabad..Vaidyana nthan says, "It was a discussion with my friends about how we are growing away from our roots and scriptures. Knowledge of Sanskrit gives you access to a world that was extremely scientific and advanced. The simple way of learning the language is the natural way -- hear it, speak it and then write it." The participants of the course include the PGPX students and their family members. There are houses in IIM-A where the whole family is trying to converse in Sanskrit.

Based on a report in THE TIMES OF INDIA, Ahmedabad, March 17, 2008; (Idea: Shri Arun, Shri. M. Jayaraman ).


Poornima, Kali Yugaabda 5109, Sarvadhari Chithirai 8 (April 20, 2008)

** THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS, Chennai, announced on April 21, 2008 its intention to highlight good news thus: “There are many in Tamil Nadu who silently bring cheer to the lives of people in their neighbourhood. Express starts a new series profiling these achievers”. This issue of PANCHAAMRITAM presents the first three in that series titled ‘THE REAL HEROES’.

** Team PANCHAAMRITAM are very sorry that this issue of PANCHAAMRITAM could be posted only on April 28, 2008.

-- Moderator


A typical scene. The flower merchant steps out of his shop at Coimbatore's flower market on Mettupalayam Road, garland in hand. Makes sure that the new white cloth is there in his bag. Hastens towards the government hospital. Minutes before, information had reached him that an unclaimed body waits for the final journey at the mortuary. Once there, he, assisted by his friends, wraps the body of the unknown person in the white shroud and places the garland on it in all esteem. They carry it to the waiting ambulance. At the burial ground, they pay the burial fees and then return in silence with a contented heart. At times, they repeat this ennobling exercise many times in a day. Once, they had performed such a send off ceremony to as many as 13 unidentified or abandoned dead persons in one day.With the singular mindset: 'we serve man to serve god'. The unknown man or woman, the beneficiary of the service of Udhavum Thozhargal, may not be alive to thank them, but the police are grateful. "The police inform us if any unclaimed body needs burial," informs Rajakani, the flower merchant (mobile: 9442285857). He and his friends, about 40 of them, comprising the Udhavum Thozhargal team, began this exercise in 2004. Quickly, one Stephen placed an ambulance at their disposal. Proof enough of the poet's assertion: 'nobility enkindleth nobility'. More in the same vein: "pit diggers at the burial ground charge just a nominal amount when we take a body there for burial," a member said. Ancient Indian wisdom bestows the benefit of an Ashwamedha Yaga on the one who performs anaatha preta samskar (funeral for an orphan). But Rajakani and his Udhavum Thozhargal say, all they derive is happiness in 'serving' unclaimed unknown persons after their death. Recently, a patient from Haryana died at Coimbatore Medical College Hospital. They gave a decent burial. Artificial boundaries, obviously, do not pose a problem to these do-gooders. Take, for example, Rajakani himself. He is a native of Madurai and had made Coimbatore his home two decades back.

A report by Shri. M Rafi Ahmed in THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS, Chennai,

April 21 2008


They are made for each other and both of them for Odanthurai. Shri. R Shanmugam and Smt. Lingammal Shanmugam have taken Odanthurai village panchayat in Karamadai block in Coimbatore district to dizzy heights making it a model for others to emulate.Odanthurai has many firsts to its credit. Shanmugham, who was the grama panchayat president for 10 years, is the man behind the show, and Lingammal took up the reins in 2006 when the presidentship changed into reserved-for-woman post. Odanthurai is the first panchayat in the country to have a comprehensive community water supply scheme and the first to install bio-mass gasifier energy project to run the supply with renewable energy module.“Our panchayat takes the credit of implementing the group housing scheme for tribal population with complete infrastructure. As many as 119 houses have been constructed under the scheme,” he said.Odanthurai is now a hutfree village with pucca roads, potable drinking water and street lights.The village has three elementary schools and there are no dropouts, he claims. Naturally, it is child labour free. Materialising of a ten-year plan (1996-’06) by Shanmugam fetched the village the President of India’s Nirmal Gram Purashkar award in 2004-05.Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi conferred on him the Uthamar Gandhi Award in October 2006. As many as 600 village panchayat presidents visited Odanthurai on a state sponsored trip.

Based on a report by Shri. Rafi Ahmed in

THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS, Chennai, April 22 2008


Abdul Salam, a retired professor, native of Thiripuvanam in Shivaganga district, (Tamilnadu, Bharat) conducts discourses on Kamba Ramayanam at Shri Kodanda RamarTemple in Ramanathapuram on Thursdays. Earlier, he had conducted discourses on Bhagavadgita. He also preaches secularism in Churches, Mosques and Temples. His discourses attract all sections of people. He worked as a professor of Tamil in Rajah Sethupathy Government Arts College, Ramanathapuram.

Based on a report by Shri S.Raja in THE NEW INDIAN

EXPRESS, Chennai, April 23 2008


Dharmapuri district Collector Smt. P Amudha declared her decision to donate her body for medical research at an Eye Camp organized by Dharmapuri Kasthurba Seva Sangh in Dharmapuri on April 20, 2008. Following the Collector’s example, Shri. K.Vadivelu (45) of Savuluppatti, his wife Smt. Rajamani and his sister Pachiyammal too, recorded their willinness to donating their bodies at the camp. Amudha said, her Husband, her elder brother and younger sisters also had signed eye donation pledges likewise. Nothing would accompany us after death except our good deeds and so we should leave an indelible imprint by way of service to society. Donating parts of one’s physical frame to be useful to society was just the rent for living in the world, she said.

Based on a report by Shri. M Sankararamanujam in THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS, Chennai, April 21 2008


On March 22, 2008, 36-year-old Shri. Ramu Gaikwad, a resident of Kalyan, Mumbai (Maharashtra, Bharat), found an additional sum of Rs 96,750 deposited in his bank account. Realising the money had been transferred by mistake, Gaikwad went to the nearest branch of his bank in Kalyan, where he came to know that the money belonged to one Sudhir Kumar Jha. He took Jha’s address from the bank and went to his house in Bhiwandi the next day to return the money. Jha had actually transferred the money to the account of an IPO agent as he wanted to invest it in the Reliance IPO. But the money mistakenly got deposited in Gaikwad’s account. Ramu was relieved and happy only after returning the money. A thankful Jha says, “I thought I would have to register a police complaint and run around police stations. But my happiness knew no bounds when Gaikwad approached me with my money. I am very thankful to him.”

Based on a report by Smt. Dipti Sonawala in

April 2, 2008; also DINAMALAR, April 14, 2008.



Amaavaasya, Kali Yugaabda 5110, Sarvadhari Chithirai 23 (May 5, 2008)

Posted on MAY 10, 2008


The RSS was busy training youth in patriotism ans cutured living in Tamilnadu in its 20 day camps through May. Rashtra Sevika Samiti too held such camps for Hindu women. Teachers of Sangh schools had the opportunity in such camps for an orientation to lead an idealist profession. A few swayamsevaks trained in Veda recital with adequate exposure to the sastras including Upanishads and the Gita, conducted a camp in Adambakkam, a suburb of Chennai (Tamilnadu, Bharat) from May 1 to May 9, 2008, that was very special in many aspects: The 55 boys (age 12-15) who benefited by the camp, were drawn from families in Sangh contact. The occupation of parents indicated presence of all social groups in the residential camp; for instance, accountant, businessman, conservancy worker, headload worker, building painter, auto rickshaw driver, etc. The boys went back confident of sending a thrill in their parents at home by reciting a few Vedic hyns flawlessly and performing pooja in simple steps uttering the appropriate mantras. If it was a gurukula experience for the boys, it was a habit formation for Hindu parents in sending their wards away to study vedas. This was the fourth year that the camp styled ‘Bharatiya Samskriti Shibiram’ is held in summer. Shri. V. Lakshminarayanan, a retired Tamilnadu government Under Secretary, himself a Swayamsevak, led the team of Sangh workers in manging the Shibiram.



It executive Shrichand Kaushik, 25, doesn't waste his Saturdays and Sundays at parties or spas. He heads to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh karyalaya for a bout of soul-searching. Neither does Guru Prasad, a young Infosys employee, too, makes it to the Sangh state headquarters, where he can meet Lokesh B.H. and M.P. Kumar, the CEOs of Ratna Rai Infotech and Global Edge Solutions. They are all regulars at the IT milan, held on the lines of the Sangh parivar's Diwali and Holi milans. Every fortnight for the past one year, scores of young Bangalore techies have been gathering at these meetings. The meetings end with the members singing the Sangh anthem, "Namaste sadaa, vatsale mathrubhoomi (salutations, ever-loving motherland)", their right hand placed over the chest. Some of the wealthy yuppies even turn out in the Sangh's khaki knickers. Most are aged between 25 and 35.Some of them already millionaires. Word of mouth has increased the attendance from around 25 at the beginning to about 100. They discuss the issues of the day and not business or office politics, and wonder if it's worth their while stashing up the bucks if they cannot "share a part of it with society". The gatherings have sometimes yielded tangible results, like a corpus for scholarships for poor but "bright and meritorious" students. Some of the techies' attraction is born out of faith in the Sangh's ideology of a "strong nation". For others, the "sanitised" lifestyle of the swayamsevak (Sangh volunteer) is an ideal to aspire to. They claim to know as much about the future of the Sangh as about that of the IT industry. "Anything modern need not be western," says Kumar, arguing globalisation and the Sangh are "perfectly compatible". Asked how many techies are in the Sangh, the answer ranges from 2,000 to 1 lakh, including those from Mysore and Mangalore, the state's other IT hubs. But, Lokesh explains, the IT milans are confined to small, "manageable" groups so that the discussions and debates don't wander off-course. So why are they here? Kaushik, a senior executive with Torry Harris Business Solutions, cites "Indianisation" as his inspiration. "I want to quote a Hindi adage that says the world will awaken only when the Hindu awakens and when the world awakens, only then will humanity gather faith in itself." Kaushik claims there is no contradiction between his version of "Indianisation" and globalisation, which spawned the industry that has turned him into a millionaire at 25. "To understand a country you must understand its history, and globalisation has clouded this understanding," he says. For Prasad, the Sangh is like a personality-development kit. "I have understood the traditional values of India, the family and social values, through the Sangh."

Based on an article by Smt. Radhika Ramaseshan

in THE TELEGRAPH, May 8, 2008


The first batch of candidates numbering 30, who have completed the one-year training in Vaishnavite religious rituals under the 'Anaivarum Archagar Agalam' (All can become arcahakas) programme, performed their maiden 'homam' - 'Sri Sudharsana homam' - for world prosperity and peace, as part of their training programme, .at Sri Kaatazhagiasingar Temple at Tiruvanaikovil, Trichy (Tamilnadu, Bharat) on May 7, 2008. The candidates exhibited their talent in reciting verses and hymns in Sanskrit and Tamil. "It was total surprise for us all to witness the trainees perform the 'velvi'," said the Joint Commissioner and Executive Officer of Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple, Srirangam, M. Kavitha. The performance of the 'velvi' (havan) by the candidates had been documented in a compact disc, she said. The Vaishnava saint, Sri Ranga Narayana Jeeyar of Srirangam and Joint Commissioner, Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments, Tiruchi Division, M. K. Balasubramanian were present. This temple is one of the two centres in the State for imparting training in Sri Vaishnavite rituals, the other one being the Shri Parthasarathy temple in Chennai.

Based on a report in THE HINDU of May 8, 2008.


Shri. D. Tirunavukkarasu is a pushcart vendor dealing in fancy items. He is a resident of Unamanchery near Chennai (Tamilnadu, Bharat). On the wee hours of May 8, 2008, not having had a good night's sleep he turned restless. More in his own words: “It was about 4.30 a.m. when I came near the bus stop for tea. I heard the noise of someone banging a steel box using tools. I initially thought mechanics were working on a lorry. I gathered my courage and approached the bushes when I heard a voice threatening me not to come closer. I stood still and stones came flying from the bushes." It was only then he confirmed that burglars had broken into the pawn broker's shop nearby. He went on: "A small group of people gathered around me, but we were still hesitant to approach the bushes. Only after an encouraging turnout did we muster courage to go closer, only to see the abandoned safe," This burglary in Kolapakkam near Vandalur that day is probably the biggest in recent times, considering the value of gold jewellery taken away. It might have been bigger, but for the presence of mind of this senior citizen Tirunavukkarasu. Tirunavukkarasu became an instant local hero whose effort was promptly acknowledged by the police too.Acknowledging Tirunavukkarasu's role, police said that had he not raised an alarm, robbers would have taken away the smaller jewels such as nose studs, ear rings and 'metti' and added they would push for a suitable reward to him.

Based on a report by Shri.K. Manikandan in THE HINDU May 9, 2008.


Bamon Doro, 25, from Sangram circle in Kurumkumey district (Arunachal Pradesh, Bharat), lost his sight to chicken pox when he was hardly three. He took up singing at weddings and get-togethers and was applauded by villagers for his efforts. Enthused he came down to the state capital Itanagar in 1998 hoping to get a sponsor. During a major Vanavasi (tribal) festival 'nyokum' there, his performance won the hearts of the people and a person agreed to sponsor him and his first audio album was released in 2006. It was an instant hit. He says his career took off with the release of the album containing a song 'challing yoka donyi' (the light of the sun has no meaning for me). Since he is unlettered, doro says he has to uses a tape recorder while composing songs. "I sing from the heart," says Doro who began appearing on Doordarshan (TV) programmes since 2000.The singer, who stays with his wife and child in a traditional hut roofed with toko leaves in Itanagar, rents out eight small rooms at Rs 500 each a month to supplement his income. He will be bringing out his 4th audio album 'challing dito donyi' (the light may not have any meaning to me, but let the sun shine for others).

Based on a PRESS TRUST OF INDIA report, May 9, 2008.



Poornima, Kali Yugaabda 5110, Sarvadhari Vaikasi 6 (May 19, 2008)


The time was 18.57 (that is,6.57 PM). The date: May 10, 2008. Does that ring a bell? Yes, it is to remind the country of the supreme sacrifice by innumerable sons and daughters of Bharatmata in the great upsurge of 1857. That was the final day of the 150th year of that memorable event. Bharatmata herself , in a portrait form, went round Thiruchengodu near Erode (Tamilnadu, Bharat) seated on a tastefully bedecked Rath. 150 swayamsevaks in gana vesh formed the vanguard in rows of three. Gopi, a young swayamsevk carried the saffron flag and another swayamsevak Santhosh held aloft a torch along the procession. It started at 6 pm from Anna statue, in the heart of the town. with Shri. TST Ponnusami, district treasurer of Congress inaugurating the event. As the procession traversed the streets of the small temple town, swayamsevaks raised spirited slogans such as “Bharatmata ki jai!” and “Vandemataram!” which attracted one and all. As a result, the procession grew in size with townsmen joining it, taking the total number to 800 when it culminated into a public meeting. At the South car street junction, the patriotic procession became a traffic stopper; about 1,000 people gathered to offer obeisance to Bharatmata there. Thiruchengodu as it were adored Bharatmata with a large number of garlands along the route. Two little girls showered flowers on Bharatmata; they had somehow managed to collect the money needed to buy flowers. At the meeting, at stroke of 18.57 hours, a Deepam was lit by way of paying homage to the martyres of 1857. RSS Pracharak Mahalingam, nagar karyawah Chinnasami and Mukhya Shikshak Thirunavukkarasu were among those who spoke (in chaste Tamil) highlighting values like patriotism, national security and unity. Speaking to Team PANCHAAMRITAM, Shri. Thirunavukkarasu said, “It was declared and conducted as an RSS programme. Seven college students approached us at the end of the function and expressed their desire to join RSS. Three of them are now regular swayamsevaks in one of the six shakhas in Thiruchengodu. People in general got an opportunity to know RSS first hand.” In a moving tone he added: “As the procession crossed the jewellary shop of our sanghchalak, the 85 year old Shri Natesan Chettiar, he was so overwhelmed with fervour hearing shouts of “Bharatmata ki jai!” and “Vandemataram!” rending the sky on the streets of Thiruchengodu once more after six decades of freedom, that he darted forth down the steps with the vigour of a youth, himself shouting the slogans. He was unstoppable. It sent a thrill in all of us.” (Through innumerable such programmes, from Kashmir to Kanyakumari, RSS and allied organisations helped the country pay homage to the spirit of 1857 on that day and precisely at that time.)


Rickshaw puller Daniel Thomas and his wife Selvi, of Villivakkam, Chennai (Tamilnadu, Bharat), live at the meager resources of Daniel Thomas. With the Rs 1,000 per month that he earns, he could not afford the cost of Rs 1.65 lakhs for a heart surgery for his son who was suffering from a congenital heart disease. Little Emmanuel was diagnosed with an anomaly in his heart when he was six months old. A doctor at the MIOT hospital, Chennai, agreed to perform the surgery on Emmanuel, but told them that it would cost them Rs 1.65 lakhs. The couple did not give up hope and approached several NGOs and Charity organizations for help. Soon the required amount was collected. Emmanuel underwent the surgery on April 1, 2008, at the MIOT hospitals. He passed away around 11.30 a.m on Monday, due to cardiac failure. As soon as the news of Emmanuel’s death spread, Shri..C.M.Munna, Chennai District organizer of the blood donor wing of the NGO Human Rights Organisation co-ordinated eye donation with the C.U.Shah Eye Bank of the Sankara Nethralaya. When he approached Emmanuel’s parents seeking the donation of the child’s eyes, they agreed immediately without any hesitation They wanted their son Emmanuel to be use of to society after his death and this would be the only way in which Emmanuel could thank all his sponsors.

Based on a report by Shri Rama Lingam in the



Roja, a 22 year old Muslim girl married Velmurugan, a 23 year old Hindu youth in a temple in Thanjavur. Velmurugan, son of Duraikkannu of Nagalur Manachampatti in Karur district (Tamilnadu, Bharat), fell in love with Roja, daughter of Khader Moideen of Vedachalapuram near Thogamalai, while they were studying in school. Velmurugan joined a catering technology course after finishing tenth standard, while Roja bid goodbye to her studies. Velmurugan’s parents made arrangements to marry him off to a girl of their religion. Roja’s parents who came to know of her affair arranged her marriage to a boy of their own community. With the help of friends, the lovers left for Thanjavur on April 10 2008 and got married at Sri Subramaniar Koil in Pookkara Street on April 17. Later the couple went to the All Women Police Station and lodged a complaint. My love for Velmurugan prompted me to marry him as per Hindu religious practice, Roja said.

Based on a report in THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS, April 19, 2008


Labourers in Nagapattinam district (Tamilnadu, Bharat), have promptly repaid loans obtained in 2007-08 from the National Scheduled Caste Financial Development Corporation (NSFDC), New Delhi. The women handed over Rs 30 lakh to district collector Tenkasi S Jawahar, who in turn, provided them land pattas, at a function in Porayar on April 29, 2008. One acre land was given to each of the women under the initiative of the Gandhian Smt Krishnammal Jagannathan, who acts as the secretary of Nagapattinam based Land for Tillers movement (LafTi). THADCO gave a subsidy of Rs 1.51 crore and the beneficiaries had to repay Rs 1.83 crore. The women repaid Rs 30 lakh in July 2007 and another Rs 30 lakh on April 29. Of the Rs 60 lakh paid so far, 100 women have fully repaid loans and got pattas from the Collector. Others have partially repaid loans and will continue to do so in installments. Handing over a cheque for Rs 30 lakh to the Collector, Krishnammal Jagannathan said LafTi had told the women while they availed of loans that they would have to repay it. On LafTi's appeal, the government had exempted these women from paying land registration expenses, she said. The Gandhian leader has helped more than 12,000 Harijan women get one acre of land since 1992. Receiving the cheque, Jawahar appreciated the honesty of the women in repaying loans. "Agricultural labourers have now become land owners. This is a silent revolution," he said.

Based on a PRESS TRUST OF INDIA report, April 30, 2008.


AS you take a walk along the basement stretch of the two tier overbridge in Tirunelveli Junction (Tamilnadu, Bharat), these golden lines of patriot saint Swami Vivekananda are bound to arrest your attention: "It is only by doing good to others that one attains one's own good." The white plastic board with this quote is perched atop heaps of beans and brinjal in a roadside vegetable shop. R Selvam (41) of Tirunelveli Town, a roadside vegetable vendor, spends 30 minutes in choosing and writing one such universal saying of the Swami every day. He then goes on to display the 'golden words of the day' board. It attracts quite a few customer's eyes and imagination. A few citizens do visit Selvam's shop so that they could take a look at the day's quote on the board, even as they select tender ladies fingers from the heaps. What was the motivation for this imaginative service? Said Selvam: “Five years ago, one of my regular customers gave me a book, Teachings of Swami Vivekananda and asked me to go through it during my free hours. The teachings of the great spiritual leader inspired me a lot and I decided to spread the message of the Swami in my own way”. In his own way, Selvam, a class three drop-out, relates the life and message of Swami vivekananda to his two kids at home. "I am one who came up in life by dint of hard work and I could identify myself with Vivekananda's sayings on hard work. That is why I took to spreading his word," he adds.

A report entitled ‘Vegetable Vendor's Vivekananda’ in THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS, Chennai, May 2 2008 (Idea: Shri. S. Murthi)



Amaavaasya, Kali Yugaabda 5110, Sarvadhari Vaikasi 21(June 3, 2008)


One cannot turn a corner without bumping into an Indian. Even on Mars! As the world watched, the Mars Exploration Rovers undertook detective work on the red planet, guided by computer software developed by a National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) team lead by Kanna Rajan. And the team responsible for the entry and landing of the twin rovers - Spirit and Opportunity - is also headed by an Indian American, Prasun N. Desai. Desai, an aerospace engineer at NASA's Langley Research Center, Va, who led the team which supported the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, explains: "The system that we contributed to was the entry, descent and landing system for MER, determining how we bring this Lander safely down; It was just a completely amazing experience — putting a system like this together to make it successful trying to land on another planet." By Lavina Melwani in


The coastal Killai village, near Chidambaram (Tamilnadu, Bharat) sports a temple for Tamil folk Goddess of protection, Sri Maha Mariamman. Smt M Bashiribi (48), wife of Shri Mohmed Jinnah (55), a tea stall owner, performs daily puja and rituals like any Hindu priest. The couple built the temple 10 years ago. It all started with a dream Bashiribi had about a decade ago. She was anxious to know the meaning of her dream and approached a few oracle tellers. She was told that Amman (goddess Durga) had appeared in her dream. The oracle tellers suggested that the family build a temple for Amman. Subsequently, Jinnah and Bashiribi built the shrine at Mosque Street in the village at a cost of Rs 2 lakh. They installed a three-foot idol of the presiding deity and a panchaloha idol. They also spent Rs 1.5 lakh for kumbhabhishekham. However, the going had been tough. The couple earned the wrath of relatives for chasing their temple dream. In fact, a few relatives deserted Jinnah and Bashiribi after failing to convince them against building the temple.

Based on a report by Shri. P Arul in THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS May 26 2008


It's easy to miss Samkalp Bhavan in Paharganj's Aram Bagh (New Delhi, Bharat), on a narrow street dotted with small buildings. But residents say the Bhavan, run by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), is always buzzing with activity, especially during that time of the year when young Civil Services aspirants, having cleared the two stages of the examinations conducted by the Union Public Service Commission, throng here for mock interviews and later for orientation camps. "We serve free food to students while they train here for the interviews. Even the fees are nominal. It's a social service initiative to help students from disadvantaged sections," Anand Kumar, coordinator, Samkalp, says. Samkalp, set up in 1986, also offers coaching for the Civil Services Mains examination for a paltry sum of Rs 5,000. For the exams in 2007, as many as 825 out of 1,875 examinees called for the final interviews enrolled at Samkalp for mock viva voce classes. 295 of them had made it to the Civil Services. A maulana from the Darul-Uloom-Deoband in Uttar Pradesh has passed the civil services exam, in his fourth attempt. For his interview, the maulana took training from the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS)-run institute Samkalp. About his experience at the RSS-run Samkalp, Rehman said, "I did not feel any bias. They are doing a good job," he said.

Based on a write up by Shri. Mateen Hafeez in the TIMES NEWS NETWORK


Padmashri Neyyattinkara Vasudevan, who died at 68 on April 13, 2008, was cremated with state honours in Thiruvananthapuram. Born to a poor Harijan labourer couple, young Vasudevan grew up in deeppenury. But at a time when tradition kept Carnatic music an exclusiveBrahminical preserve, Vasudevan became the first non-Brahmin to break the casteist glass ceiling to sing at the famed Navarathri Mandapam of the Travancore royal family. Vasudevan learnt his first music lessons from his labourer father Narayanan. After high school, Vasudevan honed his talent at the Swathi Tirunal Sangeetha Akademy in Thiruvananthapuram. His genius soon fetched him the discipleship of some of the greatest living masters of Carnatic music at the time - including Semmangudi Srinivasa Iyer and Ramnad Krishnan. It was no coincidence that the famed Madras Music Academy, where he had held concerts for many decades, selected him as the best vocalist no less than four times. Vasudevan, who, at 20, won the President's award in a national music contest that AIR held in 1960.

From Shri. Rajiv Pai’s report in



Most students in Pakistan are surprisingly keen to learn about Hinduism, despite the hostility that has prevailed between their country and India in the previous sixty years. According to Dr Smt. Maureen Korp, as art critic and a religious studies scholar based in Canada, the students in Pakistan were different to the ones she was used to teaching in Canada. Korp, who is visiting Lahore at the invitation of the Beaconhouse National University (BNU), Lahore (Pakistan), said she had given an assignment to her students in which they were asked about religions including Hinduism, Islam, Buddhism, Christianity and Judaism. "Surprisingly, I found that most students were keen to know about Hinduism despite the enmity, which India and Pakistan have," the Daily Times quoted her, as saying. An author of two books, Korp received her doctorate from the University of Ottawa and has won various academic awards.

Based on an ANI report, May 26 2008.


Poornima, Kali Yugaabda 5110, Sarvadhari Aani 4(June 18, 2008)


Lakshmi, the girl who picks up my daily garbage told me how she had been beaten with a metal rod by an old man, because she dared to ask for water on a hot day. She was very upset, and cried angrily that day. It so happened that a few days later, as her cart was outside his home, the lady of the house had a stroke. The old man came out and called for help. He froze when he saw Lakshmi, as he was sure she would go away pretending not to have heard him. But Lakshmi went in and got the woman back on her bed, cleaned her up and stayed with her till she was admitted to hospital. The man offered her a five hundred rupee note, but Lakshmi refused it. “I needed him to see my dignity, not my poverty,” she said. I wondered about her generosity and asked her about it. “Since I was a small girl, I have believed that we should not give back hurt to one who has hurt us and I try to live that way.”

From an article ‘The Ahimsa Way’ by Smt. Usha Jesudasan in the MAGAZINE section of THE HINDU, June 15, 2008. Idea: Shri. Raghuraman.


Three young cadets of National Defence Academy (NDA) excelled in an international competition on the Laws of Armed Conflict (LOAC) for Military Academies, conducted recently, at the International Institute of Humanitarian Law (IHL), San Remo, Italy. LOAC is a branch of international law and is based on Geneva Conventions. It concerns, firstly, with protection of those who are not taking part in an armed conflict directly. The three cadets were Cadet Harshwardhan Pathak, Cadet Yogender Kathayat and Cadet Ritwik Sankrit. A total of 28 Academies from 18 countries including USA, South Africa, France, Israel, Ireland and Canada took part in the competition.

From June 2, 2008


Indian scientists are making rapid advances in their respective fields but when it comes to god, one in four is a firm believer and many more accept the existence of a "higher power." A survey of 1,100 scientists across 130 universities and research institutes across the country threw up interesting results as 29 per cent believed in the philosophy of 'karma' A survey, by the Institute for the Study of Secularism in Society and Culture of Trinity College, Hartford, Connecticut and the Hyderabad based Centre for Inquiry, found that religion and faith had deep roots in the minds of Indian scientists. An amazing 64 per cent scientists said they would refuse to design biological weapons because of their moral and religious beliefs. In 2005, space scientists had travelled to Tirupati to seek the blessings of Lord Venkateswara before launching the rocket and satellite. Forty one per cent of scientists surveyed approved this religious endorsement of a space project.



Now, a spicy incentive for grihalakshmis in lieu of scrap plastics. In an innovative method to deal with waste management, 'environ', a Guvahati NGO, in collaboration with other women groups, is providing ginger and garlic to housewives in exchange of scrap polythene. The project aims to arrest pollution caused by plastic and help in proper waste management in the city, says its president Shri. Amarjyoti Kashyap For every kilogram of used polythene, the NGO provides garlic and ginger amounting to Rs 10, he says "Our idea," says kashyap, "is a participatory approach which involves the homemakers in waste management campaign." "Plastic wastes are generally generated from kitchen, that is why we thought of giving ginger and garlic which is used in making curry," says Beena Sharma, president of Abhijatri Mahila Samiti which is a co-partner of 'environ' in this project. The project which started without any government grants, is getting a good response. "On the first day itself we collected 75 kilograms of scrap plastics from a single society building," says Mamata Chatterjee, an activist associated with the project. The NGO has involved rag pickers to collect plastics from households. In this way they will also be benefited. At present they are getting only Rupees two for one kilogram of waste plastics. "But we will give them Rupees eight for the same amount," says Kashyap. According to a survey done by the ngo in 2004, Assam generates plastic waste of 50,000 kg per day, of which Guwahati accounts for 5000 kg.

Based on a report in, June 12, 2008


An unemployed Ambala youth, found a bag of an NRI containing foreign currency and travel documents and handed it over to the police. The youth, Shamsher Singh was travelling in a bus from Delhi back to his home in Ambala district of Haryana (Bharat), when he found the bag with US and Canadian dollars worth Rs two lakh, a citizenship card, passport, Air tickets and other documents, officials said today. He handed it over to additional director-general of police (crime) G D Pandey in Chandigarh to be restored to its rightful owner. The police then got in touch with Darshan Singh of Punjab's Hoshiarpur district, who is a permanent resident of the United States, and informed him about the recovery of his bag. The NRI announced a reward of Rs 10,000 for the youth while Pandey has recommended his name to the state government for a special honesty award and a commendation certificate.

THE TIMES OF INDIA, Chandigarh, June 13, 2008.



AMAAVAASYA, Kali Yugaabda 5110, Sarvadhari Aani 18 (JULY 2, 2008)


Meet Padmavathi Amma. Her work: to cook food for the children who stay in the Keshava Vidya Mandir school in village Nallur off Pollachi, Coimbatore district (Tamilnadu, Bharat). A week-long camp for Hindu women was held at the school premises this May. A few hundred from several districts attended the camp. One day the participants fanned out to villages nearby, for practical seva experience. As a batch of 15 participants set out to a village, Padmavathi Amma accompanied them since she knew the route. On the way, she gathered from the ladies information to the effect that all of them were there, leaving their home and comforts, to receive training to serve the poor. Padmavathi Amma was so impressed that she successfully persuaded all to take food in her humble house that noon (her husband was no more. He, an auto rickshaw driver, had died of heart attack). All the volunteers prostrated before Padmavathi Amma and received her blessings. As they left for the camp, Amma handed them a bunch of a few hundred plantain fruits. As told to Team PANCHAAMRITAM


** How to name a missile? Or a tank? Or an aircraft for that matter? If you thought Agni, Prithvi and Akash, Nag, Arjun (tank), Lakshya (pilotless bomber), etc., were random names scientists just came up with, you couldn't be farther from the truth. Great deliberation takes place before choosing names. Sanskrit names are always given preference. Scientists believe such names are powerful. All names are, in one way or the other, connected to the function of the missile, aircraft or tank. Take for instance Agni, the intermediate range ballistic missile. The fire or the energy needed for propulsion is what gave the missile its name (From a report by Smt. Deepa Bhasthi in THE TIMES OF INDIA, June 20, 2008). ** In a rare honour, the Indian government conferred on Ji Xianlin the Padma Bhushan - one of the country's top civilian awards - on Republic Day, January 26, 2008. The 97-year-old scholar is the first Chinese to receive the award. Ji chose to major in Sanskrit in 1936, when he was a student at the University of Gottingen in Germany. The reason was that "Chinese culture has been so much influenced by Indian culture, and great discoveries can be made in research on the two nations' cultural relationship," he wrote. He has translated Ramayana from the original Sanskrit to Chinese in poetry form. He did the translation secretly during the "cultural revolution" (1966-76). On June 6, 2008, Bharat’s External Affairs Minister Shri. Pranab Mukherjee conferred the Padma Bhushan award on Ji Xianlin during his 4-day visit to China. (CHINA DAILY proudly records: "Mandarin, the English word for an official in imperial China, is derived from the Sanskrit word mantri, which means counselor"). Based on a report by Shri. Wang Shanshan in CHINA DAILY, January 28, 2008 and another report in THE HINDU June 7, 2008.


The great Indian epic Ramayanam was presented by 60 kids (age: 4 to 15) from Bloomington - Normal (Illinois, USA), with all fanfare and festivity on June 8, 2008 at the prestigious Bloomington Center of Performing Arts (BCPA). More than 600 spectators attended. They all appreciated the talent and enthusiasm of kids (The occasion was the grand finale of "Kaun Banega Ramayan Expert" (KBRE) contest that the.Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh (HSS) had organized simultaneously across towns in USA). Preparation for the stage event extended over three months. All the dialogs were in English while preserving the reverence and deep emotional fervour associated with Ramayanam. The skillfully choreographed enactment was interspersed with drama, songs and dances, war scenes and melodrama. This is the first time such a large variety show on Ramayana was performed in Midwest America. The scenes from Ramayanam that the kids enacted included ‘Balakand’, ‘ Vishwamitra’s gurukul’, ‘Sita Swamyavar’, ‘Ram Vanvas’, ‘ Sita Apharan’, ‘Lanka Dahan’, ‘Setu Bandhan’, ‘Lakshman-Indrajit Yudh’, ‘Hanuman Sanjivani’, ‘Kumbhakaran Yudh’, ‘Ram-Ravan yudh’, ‘Return of Shri Ram to Ayodhya’ and ‘Shri Ram Rajya-Abhishekam’. The main objective of the event was to bring the spirit of Ramayanam to every one in the community and lay the foundation of strong value-oriented character among kids and adults. Idea: Shri Ravi Kumarji of Vishwa Vibhag.


'Ramayanam' and 'Mahabharatam' are the latest much-sought-after sources for Bharat’s armed forces. Keen to make India's war fighting techniques popular in contemporary military discourse, Indian defence forces will take a leaf out of the epics. "The mythological wars described in Ramayanam and Mahabharatam contain many doctrinal, strategic and operational aspects that appear to be relevant in modern times too," said a note prepared for a June 19 New Delhi seminar organised by Government of India. The need for such a seminar was felt because Western thinking and military jargon were poised to make deep inroads into the minds of planners and practitioners of military art in India, the note said. "Moreover, as a nation, we have a long history of warfare and have had opportunity to exhibit our own way of war-fighting," army officers said. It was only proper to portray how various generations of Indians managed the security imperative, the note added. "Eminent speakers from the strategic community would guide the seminar towards this important goal," officers said.

Based on a PTI report of June 18, 2008. Idea: Shri. S.Suresh.


Appreciating the honesty of Gurmit Singh, cashier at Ludhiyana branch of Punjab and Sindh Bank, Raj Kumar Sharma, a customer of the branch, has impressed upon the higher authorities to recognise the former’s integrity. Sharma told the Ludhiana Tribune that the cashier had returned Rs 5,000 that had been deposited in excess by him yesterday. “Though we had no idea about the number of notes deposited in the bank, Gurmit Singh found at the time of closing cash that an amount of Rs 5,000 had been deposited extra,” said Sharma, adding that the cashier had returned huge amounts to the customers in the past also. LUDHIYANA TRIBUNE, June 29, 2007.