Tag Archives: Seva

Organ donation as service to society

By Virag Pachpore

“The sole purpose of human life is to serve and to show kindness and the will to help others”

Nagpur, July 25: “Those people only live who live not for their own self but for the welfare of others”, so goes the famous adage. But there are very few who imbibe the spirit of this saying and lead the society by their own example. Our history is replete with umpteen such examples of individuals who have lighted the path of the posterity by the benevolent light of their sacrifice, devotion and service to the needy. But in the modern times of materialism and consumerism such examples have become a rarity. Dr Kishor Mohril, is one such rare personality to join this most exalted class in the present times.

A pathologist by profession, Dr KIshor Mohril and his better half Dr Lata are in their mid-sixties now. Coming from a middle class background both have led a contended life. “We have led a fairly good and normal life so far”, Dr Mohril shared his feelings adding “we have earned enough to sustain ourselves and our family”.

But somewhere there was a churning of emotions and ideas constantly going on in his heart. “I’ve an intuition that I should do something for the society”, the 64-year old doctor said. He shared his ideas with his wife Dr Lata and she too agreed to “my idea of repaying the social debt”. Suddenly, Dr Kishor hit upon the idea of donating his kidney to a needy patient.

“We both discussed the idea in detail. I am a diabetic and living comfortably with it for the past 22 years. We both agreed to the proposal. We also decided that either of us will donate kidney first to the needy patient with whom it matches”, Dr Kishor and Dr Lata said.

The Mohrils also discussed this idea with some of their doctor friends. “I told them to find out any such needy patient”, but initially there was no expected response”.

Kidney donation or for that matter organ donation is still mired in the thick of dogmas and social taboos. Even people are reluctant to donate blood which is comparatively easier. In our country of 125 crore, 500,000 die every year due to non-availability of organs. Out of them 150,000 people wait a kidney transplant but only 5,000 get one.

On a national level the statistic of organ donors is very poor as compared to other countries. In India this average is just 0.08 persons per million population (PMP) which is incredibly small and insignificant number as compared to the world average.

And Dr KIshor Mohril is one amongst tis miniscule minority of organ donors!

After a considerable search for a suitable recipient he found one in Neha Pande, a resident of Shivajinagar, who was suffering from kidney failure. She could get a new lease of life only if someone donated kidney to her. And here came Dr Mohril as if he was Godsend for her.

The operation took place on June 17, 2014 at Dr Sanjay Kolte’s hospital. But before that Dr Kishor Mohril had to clear all the screening tests and complete the legal procedure. “I was not aware of the stringent legal aspects associated with the donation of my kidney.” They asked me again and again to ascertain whether any monetary favours were involved, he said adding that he had to make them understand with great efforts that he was willingly donating the kidney and no such favours were involved in this.

Was he not risking his life? “No. After the initial care I am feeling better and resuming my routine life”, he said. And he is supported by a recent study published in the New England Journal of Medicine which mentioned that living kidney donors live as long or longer and enjoy better quality of life that the general population. It is the first study to follow on 3698 donors, some of whom have donated kidneys as early as 1963! The study mentioned that only 11 of out of 3698 developed severe kidney problems.

You can donate your kidney for your loved ones who have chronic kidney problems. But you can derive immense satisfaction by voluntarily donating your kidney and feel the ultimate joy. When I talked to Dr Kishor Mohril at his artistically decorated house, his face reverberated this ultimate joy and satisfaction.

How did his family members perceive this novel but risky idea? Said Dr Lata: “We have had lots of discussions on this issue. And I too felt like following him. We have decided to do something for the society and considered that this could be the best way of fulfilling our commitment to the society”.

“But I was not in favour of this”, said their son Gautam who is also a doctor. “Considering his age, his diabetes, (though under control) I did initially oppose his idea. His wife Anuya, a lecturer in an engineering college in the city, also echoed his views. “But seeing his determination and resolve, we gave in”, they confessed. “Now we feel happy and elated at his idea. His nephew Manjeet too voiced similar views. “I am so proud of my uncle, for he saved a life by voluntarily donating his kidney. He is simply great!”

Dr Kishor’s brother Kiran also reacted in a similar way. “I was aware of his decision, but came to know about it only when Kishore telephoned me from the hospital”, he said. Kiran has also pledged to donate his body to the medical college.

The girl whose life is saved is recuperating fast. For her and her family members Dr Kishor came as Godsend donor and saviour.

Organ donation is difficult and to donate voluntarily when life is going on smoothly is all the more difficult. But Dr Kishor and his wife Dr Lata and all their family members accomplished this mission.

Today, this ‘common man’ who accomplished a very ‘uncommon feat’ is healthy and twice happy. Not only is he leading a normal life but deep inside him, he experiences the bliss, the eternal joy of having given a life…a job only God can perform.

Source : Newbharati

Swami Lakshmanand Saraswati

Swami Lakshmananda       Vedanta Kesari Swami Laxmanananda Saraswati (84) took the vow to develop the downtrodden class of the society and made his centre of activities at Chakapada in tribal dominated Orissa’s Kandhmal district. Janmashtami – Aug 23rd 2008 is his balidaan Divas.

Besides social and religious development of the tribal people, he tried for almost four decades to empower them economically and academically. He established a Gurukul pattern of school and a college to teach Sanskrit in Chakapada a remote place of Kandhamal.

Sankaracharya Kanyashram, a residential school at Jalespatta is another ashram of Swamiji in the district, where education is being imparted to girls  with an intention to build character and inculcate cultural nationalism & service mindedness among them.

While there was a movement to ban cow slaughter in India, Swamiji came from Kailas to Orissa. After the movement of cow protection was over, Swamiji decided to return back to his Tapasya, when the then chief of RSS of Orissa Sri Bhupendra Kumar Basu narrated the sad stories of the tribal population of the State and requested him to help the suffering population. Swamiji went to Phulbani (Kandhmal) with Sri Basu, saw the life of people there and decided to serve the backward people mostly tribals and harijans, there and focussed to empower them.

In 1969 he started his first ashram at Chakapada and the ashram became a centre for brisk activities. He renovated the temples: Birupakshya, Kumareswar and Jogeswar and established a Sanskrit school and a college.

Swamijee invested his full energy to teach the youth of schedule caste and schedule tribe in Sanskrit and general education. He  built the youth as disciplined citizens – well cultured, well educated, and inspired them to become spiritual.

Swamijee was well versed in Vedanta philosophy, Sanskrit grammar and was awarded with the honour as “VEDANTA KESHARI”. He not only gave philosophical thoughts to the people but taught them good cultivation, animal care, horticulture and so on. The students coming out from the Kalyan Ashram Gurukula are taking leadership of the society in economic, social and cultural fields.

Due to his selfless service to humanity, he was awarded with VIVEKANANDA SEVA PURASKAR” from Kolkotta.He stood firm in Phulbani district for a long time and struggled hard to preserve and protect the tribal culture and Dharma. The Sankaracharya of Govardhan Pitha, Puri awarded him.

Swamiji was a visionary. It has been clearly established by his activities. He worked in the entire state of Orissa, specifically in Phulbani district now known as Kandhamal. He worked in the areas of health, education, agriculture, religious teachings and teaching rituals, sanskrit, sanskriti raksha, gau raksha and swadharma seva. He also informed the tribals that they can also perform yagyas and trained them in the same. He also taught them to give pravachans. ( speeches). He started mahila sankeertan mandalis ( women groups for singing bhajans) and they used to perform the ashta prahari naam keertan.

He started a night school for adult education. He insisted them to send their children to the school by which the literacy rate amongst tribal and Harijans of that area increased. He stared a Sanskrit School named Kalyan Ashram, Sanskrit Vidyalaya at Chakapad in the year 1969 which is now promoted to a Sanskrit college.

For the education of the girls, he established ‘Sankaracharya Kanyashram’ a wholly residential school at Jalespata in the year 1988 where 250 girls’ students are studying. He also established a school at Banki and ashram at panigola in Angul district. The student of Chakapada and Jalespata taking leadership in all social sphere of their life in Kandhamal and most of them are established in the government service.

The local Harijan and tribal people of Kandhamal become more health conscious after coming to the satsangh. They started to keep their houses clean, take bath every day, take safe drinking and thousands of family of the scheduled caste community have given up taking beef which ,make them healthy and disease less.

Swamiji taught them not to take liquor or any other alcoholic drinks during Satsang. Then gradually they left the habit of taking such drinks. When they were free form alcohol they got ample time to do some work which they utilized in their field and other activities for their development. More than 500 villages in the district benefited out of Swamiji’s noble way to control liquor business as well as people on their own boycotted all intoxicants materials.

Swamiji taught grammar to the students in the class and technique of good cultivation in the field. He taught the villagers when and how to cultivate paddy vegetables etc. By which people of G.Udaygira and Raikia block area now produce the best quality and highest quantity of beans in Orissa. There also formed a vegetable cooperative society at Katingia by agricultural development the economic conditioned improved a lot. Swamiji always insisted the tribals not to be afraid of any body. He accompanied them to the govt. officer and police stations and made them fearless. They got the courage to face to the collector or SP directly.

Now we can see greenery everywhere in the Kandhmal because it has more forest cover than any other district. It is all due to Swamijis efforts to insist them to take wood only when required. He also established “Mathas on the hill tops in several parts of the district and told the villagers that the trees in the hill belong to “matha” and the village community. If emergency arises one can cut a tree and take wood only after the permission of the village committee. That worked tremendously. The joint forest management system which govt. started now has been started by Swamiji from 1970.  Swamiji was very serious regarding preservation and protection of tribal culture and tradition . He has established and renovated the tribal deity place (Dharanipenu) in several places. Similarly he has started a Rathyatra through out the Gajapati and Kandhamal districts during which thousand of tribal are attracted to their own belief. This spread all across Orissa as well.

He often said that the area will not prosper where tears or blood falls. He was against the indiscriminate cow slaughter. He taught the people to protect cattle from slaughtering and taking beef. On several occasions he staged demonstration, dharanas and participated in the hunger strike in several parts of the state. He toured through out the state for this cause. He was associated with several socio-cultural and religious organizations. He established and renovated several temples in different parts of the state. He was a founder member and inspiration of VHP and Kalyana Ashram of Orissa. His also involved himself in protecting the tribals from Christian conversion. He tried his label best to reconvert the tribals to their original faith. Inspired by his personality thousand of people in different parts of the states become his disciple.

His main missions were :

1. Making the tribal youth strong, fearless, educated and financially sound.

2. Tribals should be strong in their belief and check conversion of their brethren and bring back  those who have gone out of Hindu fold.

3. Protection of cows :

These made him popular thought out the states. During two big functions at Chakapad in 1986 and 2007,  lakhs of people gather in that remote place.

As the reconversion got momentum Christian militants feared of losing their ground.  So they attacked Swamiji several times ( 9 times). The ninth attack on him was on 24th December 2007, where he was narrowly saved being murdered by heavily armed group of 200 people, at Darsingbadi of Kandhamal. No efforts were been made by the government or administration to arrest the culprits (The Christian militants) and siege the illegal weapons kept by them. The roles of Christian NGO’s were not investigated. The attitude of the government was to protect Christians and harass Hindus. Hundreds of Hindus were arrested but only a few Christians. Lakhs of rupees were provided to the church and other Christian organizations as relief, which were not damaged during that period.

These things encouraged the Christian militants and they brutally killed Swami Laxmananda Saraswati, Bhakti Mata. Amrutananda Baba, Kishore baba and Purub Ganthi a guardian of a Kanyashram girl on the Janmastami night on 23rd August 2008 at 8 pm. They even dared to enter the kanyashram and brutally killed 5 persons in addition to Swamiji.

Source : Vishwa Samvad Kendra, Orissa;

Points to deliberate upon :

The brutal killing of Swamiji, sent a shock wave in the country. Lakhs of people attended his antyeshti and paid their respects showing that he was respected all over Orissa and not only in Kandhamal.

1. Swamiji Lakshmanand was the only Swami who had police protection due to the number of attacks on him. However, a few days before his murder, the police protection was removed by the district administration. The only gun man he had also went on leave .

2. He was involved in cow-protection and Dharma-prachaar ( spread of dharmic values ) and was a bulwark against Christian missionaries.

3. A member of World Vision – a Christian missionary organisation was on the run.  Why was World Vision International not questioned ?

4. The Maoists distanced themselves from the attack giving a letter which stated ”  the organization would initiate action against some of their cadres in Kandhamal district who could be hired for money by communal Christian miscreants for the murder of the VHP leader”

5. Since 2008, the case has not yet been resolved for so many years. Is the laxity of the government part of a bigger conspiracy ? This has embolden many more attacks on sadhus and sants in other parts of the country.

Involvement of World Vision employee in the murder ?


Update on 3rd Oct 2013 –

Church-Maoist Nexus gets confirmed in Swami Lakshmananda Saraswati’s murder. Watch the phrase -” The convicts said they committed the crime as, according to them, Saraswati was forcing Christians to convert to Hinduism, he said.”


Bhubaneswar, Oct 3 (IANS) A court in Odisha Thursday sentenced eight persons, including a Maoist, to life in prison for the murder of a Hindu leader and four of his aides in 2008, a lawyer said.

The special additional district sessions court at Phulbani, the headquarters of Kandhamal district, about 200 km from state capital Bhubaneswar, also imposed a fine of Rs.10,000 on each of them, prosecution lawyer Ramesh Mohanty told IANS.

Those awarded the jail term and fine are Duryodhan Suna Majhi, Munda Bada Majhi, Sanatan Bada Majhi, Garnatha Chalanseth, Bijay Kumar Samseth, Bhaskar Suna Majhi and Budhadev Nayak and Pulari Rama Rao alias Uday.

Rama Rao alias Uday was a Maoist leader while others are local residents, the prosecution lawyer said. The same court pronounced Rama Rao guilty on OCT 1 while it convicted others a day earlier. The court said it would pronounce the quantum of punishment Thursday.

Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader Swami Laxmanananda Saraswati and his four aides were killed at their ashram by then unidentified gunmen at Jaleshpata in Kandhamal district Aug 23, 2008.

Five accused, including Maoist leader Sabyasachi Panda, wanted for the crime, are still untraced and on the run, police said.

The convicts said they committed the crime as, according to them, Saraswati was forcing Christians to convert to Hinduism, he said.

The killing of Saraswati and his aides triggered communal violence in the state, in which at least 38 people were killed.

Update from Vishwa Samvad Kendra Orissa on Oct 3rd 2013

Sri Arun Ray, then I.G. Crime Branch in his Press conference on 6thOctober, 2008 has stated that one group has conspired and engaged another group for killing of Swami Laxmanananda. Though a few of the murders has been nabbed and convicted the main culprits like Sabyasachi Panda and Main Conspirators of church groups are still at-large, as the Govt. seems not interested for it. All though Hon’able Odisha High Court has directed the investigating agency to take a lead on the evidences supplied by the informant, no steps has been taken in that direction, which clearly indicates the Govt. pressure to protect the culprits. The investigating officer has been rewarded with promotion and police medal for safe-guarding the culprits, which is a public discussion in Khandhamal. It is an eye wash of the government in convicting some culprits hurriedly, when the main accused are not yet booked.

Through character building, ordinary people can reach extra-ordinary height

Through character building, ordinary people can reach extra-ordinary height: Shridhar Sagar


Shridhar Sagar (or Shridhar anna as he is lovingly called), is the director of Hindu Seva Pratishthana. After his education, he worked as a Manager in a Bank for 2 years before he decided to dedicate his life for social service. He joined the Rashtriya Seva Bharati, a Social Service Organisation, as a coordinator and helped organize community activities and train volunteers. He worked in many service organisations in different capacities throughout Karnataka. In the year 1989, he joined Hindu Seva Pratishthana and started working as a coordinator. Since then he has been very active and has overseen the birth and the growth of many projects. He became the Managing Trustee and the Director of Hindu Seva Pratishthana in 1997. In this interview Shridhar Sagar talks of the concept of Seva, about the different projects of HSP and how HSP is helping people internalize the value of Seva. Excerpts from the interview.

What is the main objective of Hindu Seva Pratishthana?
HSP’s main objective has been to bring a positive change in the society through community development. We believe in character building and in making men and women who can contribute to the community. We believe that through character building, ordinary people can reach extra-ordinary heights. Through our various programs, we have been able to involve a large number of young people into community development.
What is the philosophy of Hindu Seva Pratishthana?
Hindu Seva Pratishthana believes in ‘Seva Dharma’. Seva, we believe, is one’s Dharma (one’s duty). It should not be done for name or fame or for any other returns. It has to be selfless. But more importantly Seva should restore the dignity and self-respect of its beneficiary. The compassion that accompanies our ‘Seva’ should be capable of transforming a person from a receiver of ‘Seva’ to a giver of ‘Seva’. It is also important that through our Seva we create a strong and a harmonious society.
What do you think of today’s youth? Are they socially responsible? Are they receptive to the ideas of Seva?
There is currently a very strong notion that today’s youth are careless or are not responsible. My experience with young people helps me refute this. Today’s youth are very much receptive to the ideas of Seva and community development. For example look at the Sevavrathi program of the Pratishthana. Every year we invite young people who have passed a minimum of tenth standard to come forward as volunteers. These people have to stay away from their homes in different service project locations sacrificing many of their material comforts for a period of three years. HSP has been successful in attracting and training as many as 4123 Sevavrathis in the past 31 years. Out of which notably 3681 are women. These volunteers have worked on rendering yeomen service in service projects in various states including Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.  This Sevavrathi program is an example of what today’s youth are capable of achieving.
Give us a brief introduction to the projects run by the HSP.
Hindu Seva Pratisthana has been serving the needy, the under-privileged and the marginalized people, irrespective of their class, caste, creed and religion. It is trying to instill the values of seva in the society and helping thousands of people internalize Seva as part of their daily lives. Currently, HSP is mainly focusing on ten projects.

Aruna Chetana: Aruna Chetana is a school for differently-abled and special needs children.  This year, Aruna Chetana completes 24 years of its existence. The school aims to cater to the physical, psychological, educational and health needs of the children. Aruna Chetana has received an award from Women and Child Welfare Department, Govt of Karnataka, for being the best school for special needs children.
Nele: It is a project that has a number of shelter homes for street children, rag pickers and destitute children. We started this project in the year 2000 with one center and 15 children. Today, Nele has 283 children in 10 centers in Bengaluru, Shimoga, Mysore, Tumkur and Bagalkote.
Prasanna Counseling Center: We have been running a counseling center where hundreds of people avail psychiatric counseling free of cost every month. Reputed psychiatrists, doctors and specialists from centers such as the NIMHANS and Victoria Hospitals volunteer here every week. Trainings are also conducted for volunteers who wish to become counselors themselves.
Child Guidance Center: We also conduct free counseling for children who require psychiatric counseling.
Seva Kirana: Under this project, we have a number of non-formal schools for the children of slum dwellers across Bangalore. The project apart from providing education to these children also focuses on the holistic development of these children through cultural activities and sports.
Vidya Nidhi: Through this project we offer scholarships to poor students to enable them complete their education.
Samagra Shishu Shikshana: This project works towards providing comprehensive education to the children, mostly at the primary levels of schooling. The aim of this project is to help and guide the children in all their educational needs. Over a thousand children are being benefited through this project.
Youth for Seva: It is a platform that engages the youth mostly college students and young professionals into different community development activities. Thousands of young people have been connected to different service projects through this initiative.
Nele Swavalambana: Through this project, tailoring and other employment oriented training is provided to women and youth from the economically weaker sections of the society so that they can become self-reliant.
Yoga Bharati: HSP has trained more than a thousand people all over Karnataka in the ancient practice of Yoga through special yoga camps and workshops based on the traditional Patanjali School of yoga.

Any new projects of particular focus that are coming up?
HSP believes in investing in change-makers rather than in the change itself. We believe in creating dedicated volunteers and social entrepreneurs who can work on different existing projects and also start new projects of their own. Training of volunteers is also essential for the continuity, improvement and the growth of the social endeavor. We are planning a center at Yelhanka in North Bengaluru that has the infrastructure for training volunteers and social workers on a continuous basis. The permanent facility with all the modern amenities dedicated solely for volunteer training will help run the training programs on the sustained basis and with improvised methods. The proposed center shall be able to run training programs for over three hundred people and cater to 12 different types of trainings at a time, both occasional and continually run programs.
Our focus will be on inspiring new people to volunteer and on creating dedicated social workers.

Source: http://hinduseva.org/uncategorized/interview-with-shridhar-sagar/

CEDA introduces e-learning in Sanskrit

CEDA introduces e-learning in Sanskrit

Special Correspondent

The Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (CEDA) Bangalore, has
developed a syllabus for e-learning of Samskrit up to postgraduate level,
said P. Ramanujan, Associate Director of Indian Heritage and Language
Computing of CEDA.

Speaking at the inaugural of the two-day workshop ‘vaignanika sadas’
organised by the Samskrita Sahittya Parishad at Srimathi Indira Gandhi
College for Women here on Saturday, Mr. Ramanujan said that the syllabus is
learner-friendly. He said that the learners would be fully satisfied over
the teacher’s explanation being offered through the e-learning programme.

Mr. Ramanujan, who delivered a lecture on ‘on-line resources for e-learning
of Samskrit’ said that the CEDA had evolved a special font for handling the
Vedic text. “The font would facilitate easy understanding of the vedic
‘slokas’ and other hymns ,” he said. V. Kannan, professor of Mathematics,
University of Hyderabad, in his lecture on ‘Mathematics on Samskrit’,
highlighted the treasurers of mathematical formula and theorems codified in
Samskrit language, much ahead of the times of western mathematicians or
scientists. The principles of calculus were also rich in Samskrit language,
he said citing examples from the ancient texts.

V. Gopalakrishnan, principal of Saranathan College of Engineering, said
that Samskrit was a treasure house of information, arts and science.
Research programmes should be taken up so that Samskrit could be best
utilised for our country’s overall progress .

S. Ravindran, president of the Parishad, said that two samskrit scholars
N.V. Devi Prasad and Raghunatha Sastrigal would be honoured on Sunday.

http://www.thehindu .com/todays- paper/tp- national/ tp-tamilnadu/ article2934152. ece#.T0sQjqcTG0g .email

RSS Sarkaryavah speaks on challenges before Sangh and swayamsevaks

The RSS Sarkaryavah, (General Secretary), Mananeeya Sri Bhayyaji Joshi was kind enough to give time for an interview answering questions related to the growth and challenges before Sangh, role of swayamsevaks in nation building and the recent saffron terror remarks.

1. On Challenges before Sangh

2. On Contribution in nation building by RSS Swayamsevaks

3. On Growth of Sangh since 1925.

4. On what the contribution of swayamsevaks as an individual and society should be ?

5. On Sangh’s pan Bharat spread

6. On the term “Saffron Terrorism”