“It is imperative today to take the youth towards a positive and inclusive direction, to confront a well planned conspiracy that is being worked out by provoking the youth of Kashmir Valley as well as the youth of the rest of India along the lines of communal and caste divisions. The Rashtra Sevika Samiti through it varied social programmes has taken on the challenge to empower and enlightened the youth and leading them towards a constructive path”. Expressing concern over the growing discord in society in her address at the closing session in Delhi today of the three-day Rashtra Sevika Samiti’s Prerna Shivir, the all India Sanchalika (President) Shanta Akka said it is a must to take a pledge to steer the youth away from a materialistic lifestyle and narcotic- products consumption, “We need to inculcate hope, a purposeful goal and positive values”.
Praising the youth, she said they are talented, intelligent and ambitious. “As such the role of the family is very important to nurture, develop and channelize them on their path. Normally, in India, families do provide value based (good samaskara) upbringing”, she added.
Addressing more than 3000 Karyakartas from all over India, she called upon them to stay away from a vulgar exhibitionist lifestyle, such as currently seen at the time of weddings, engagements and social-religious ceremonies. “Serve simple and delicious food, don’t waste food and money by showing –off wealth,” she advised.
She called upon the Karyakartas to invest their time in the service of society, the nation and humanity; to concentrate on sharing and caring and rise above personal interest.
Akka praised the women of Latur who rose above the boundaries of religion and caste to deal with the recent water crisis.
Referring to the global concern over the deteriorating quality of environment, she reminded her audience of the ancient tradition of India which firmly believes that man and nature share their basic units of construction, both rely on the five elements: water, earth, air, fire and ether. She pointed out that harming nature is harming ourselves and limited and controlled consumption is the best way to conserve environment.
Shanta Akka pointed out, “Today, discord is evident in society in the form of ideas about man-woman relations. Men and women are complementary to each other, they are not competitors. Man have to stop treating women as inferior to themselves, as objects”’ She added that the Samiti favours the maintenance of traditional values but change in accordance with the need of the hour is inevitable.
Self-respect, self-confidence, unconditional love and compassion are the natural qualities of women and they are brimming with potential. For the last 80 years, the Samiti has been involved with polishing the internal potential of women”.
Akka expressed her satisfaction over the strides the Indian woman has made in all walks of life and the recognition that has come her way.
“The world looks up to India with great hope, the ancient wisdom of Yoga and Ayurveda have found respect globally. Efforts are on to acquire patents for turmeric and margosa, part of everyday therapy in India. The UN has even declared June 21 as the International Yoga Day. People all over the world are adopting Indian thought in their daily lives. Recently the Netherlands made the Ramayana, the Mahabharata and the Bhagwadgeeta part of the school curriculum for the 4-11 year olds. Many US schools now observe Guru Purnima and this year Diwali was celebrated in the White House, ” she added.
Exhorting women to value and uphold their culture and to contribute to the cause of nation building, Shanta Akka said, “the ancient Indian concept ‘vasudhaiv kutumbakam’ (the world is my family) and the incomparable contribution of Indian women alone would make India a strong nation and lay the foundation for stable peace across the world”.