Wednesday, February 24, 2010
(The photo appeared in today's edition of Anandabazar Patrika)
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Last Sunday attended a one day long 'Children's Camp' arranged by young members of Kharagpur Vivekananda Yuva Mahamandal (KVYM). This is an annual event for the organization and seldom I have missed it. In fact, in my school days I attended it as one of the camper and later when active as organizer. This visit was more to feel proud how younger members representing the new generation have taken up the responsibilities and running the camp with comfortable ease with utmost sincerity and seriousness.
After flag hoisting, Sri Uttam Chatterjee (Uttamda) discussed 'Mental Concentration : Why and How'. How important is to have control over mind for any individual, more so for the young students. This was followed by a short physical training. A sound mind resides in a sound body. A balanced development of 3 'H' - Hand, Head and Heart is necessary. During breakfast break I went with Uttamda to KGP bus stand. He had to return to Chittaranjan today itself where he works for preparation of Secondary Exam. in his school. Uttamda, a senior member of had always been a great worker, leader and inspiration.
Next, Prosen..., a young member of KVYM, currently doing PhD at IIT Kharagpur discussed on 'Character qualities' and how to imbibe them in one's life through regular practice. That a person can develop his character and there is a scientific way for that was the highlight of the discussion. Next, Sri Dipak Pramanik (Dipakda) addressed the queries of the campers related to first two discussions. I said a few words during this.
There was a session on "Let us sing together" where the designated person a great singer cum teacher Kanchan Sil, attcahed to KVYM were supposed to lead. He suddenly fell ill. So a young member Souradip Pradhan and Dipakda taught campers, "Ta thaia ta thaia nache Bhola", a favourite of Swami Vivekananda.
Then there was lunch break. This is the best preparation I have had in Children's Camp. We thanked the head of the caterer as well as Shantanu, the secretary, KVYM for the arrangement. Post lunch another young member of KVYM Anirban who is currently studying in Kolkata beautifully conducted the session where the campers told short stories, recited poems or stotras. I don't think anybody could do it better than Anirban. Kudos to this young lad. The concluding talk was the address by Swami Sunisthananda, Principal, Midnapore Ramakrishna Mission School. This was an open session. Guradians, elderly people also gathered. Maharaj blended it so well that the audience of different age groups were captivated for one hour and fifteen minutes. I am uploading his entire speech (in Bengali :( though) in theses links. It is .amr file best played in nokia multi media player that can be freely downloaded (e.g. http://www.brothersoft.com/nokia-multimedia-player-46238.html) It is difficult to summarize what Maharaj said as each segment he touched is expansive. In short, he talked about (i) Arundhuti-Nyaya i.e. to start from gross else the fine cannot be immediately perceived (ii) Dogmatism coming from semi-literate condition even among the so-called learned who are out to educate others as there is no 'realization' (iii) the importance of tolerance, patience, forbearance (iv) Social service develops oneself as good human being. The civilization is cyclic in nature with ups and downs. There is no permanent remedy. One should not carry any ego that he has the solution to everything. etc.
Then the camp ended with flag down ceremony. Shantanu, the secretary praised three B.Sc., B.Com. students Bahadur, Somnath, Krishnadas for successfully conducting the camp. Ruhidas Banik, now posted in Bankura joined at about 4 p.m. after attending another meet 200 km. away that started yesterday. Ruhidas doing the mentoring role at KVYM. The leftover food was taken to Diptimoy Babu's residence, an elderly family devoted to Thakur-Ma-Swamiji with both the daughters married currently housing KVYM activities. KVYM members gathered there in the evening for post camp discussion and dinner.
Finally, the person whose silence is eloquence, who stands like a rock and guiding the young members, working with them shoulder to shoulder, my salute to you, Prabodhda, Sri Prabodh Kumar Sasmal. None can forget the contribution of young camper's favourite Bantuda who even with a paralyzed right hand and suffering from many diseases from childhood never gave up and remained an inspiration for many. One pic of Bantu talking to a young camper is available here. Other pictures are available in http://picasaweb.google.com/gsaha.iitkgp/ChildrenSCamp2010#
As I complete this post, I finished discussion with two NSS volunteers who came in between.
Friday, February 19, 2010
Wednesday, February 17, 2010
At times, Alpana Dhar’s eyes turn moist. At times, a daze of disbelief takes hold as she gazes at newspapers carrying reports on the terror attack in Pune and the massacre by the Maoists in West Midnapore.
“I wish terrorism ended soon. It has become part of our daily life, snatching away bright young lives,” sobbed the mother of Ankik, 23, and Anindyee, 19, who died in Saturday’s blast at German Bakery in Pune.
“Many innocent lives have been lost in such violence in the past and perhaps many more will be lost in the future. I would have felt worse had they contracted some lethal ailment and suffered for days,” said Alpana.
“I had groomed them in a manner that they would become good human beings. After their death, I visited Anindyee’s college and Ankik’s office and everywhere I found people loved them,” Alpana recalled.
“We mourn our children, but we mourn their unfinished dreams even more. While Ankik was a number wizard and a bright IIT-ian who made it to a coveted position in an investment bank, Anindyee was extremely creative and went on to study photography. They both had plans to create a better society for the new era that is gradually awakening,” Alpana said.
After graduating from IITKharagpur, Ankik had once expressed his desire to take the GRE and go abroad. But Alpana wasn’t too keen on this as she had always tried to instil in her children the urge to stay back and serve the country. Ankik realised this and dropped his plan to leave the country.
The Pune blast has possibly link with Pak engineered terrorism..." Prof. continues saying how a community by certain design were deprived of education and how Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose instilled a pride of Indianness across communities in his INA. A big and patient effort is needeed. For cross-border terrorism no chicken-hearted response will do.
Monday, February 15, 2010
I know not much about who are already brainwashed. What I know that who are not yet are to be flooded with positive thoughts, care, development ... so that they can counter negative influences. Can anyone kill people just like that? For some waging war against the country it is just a job. I am talking about foot-soldiers picked up from common people. We have to reach out to them.
The following is what I tried to send to Prof. Nxxxx after today's condolence meet. That time I did not know about the imminent Naxal attack. The post I wrote this morning in my blog can be found in http://gskgp.blogspot.com/2010/02/tragedy.html
In grief with all of you
You wondered why there is no outpour of anger. How much I welcome that! My only submission is that the fire is to be preserved and translated into action that goes into the making of a Nation. Most of the the times our responses are knee-jerk and ends in rhetoric. Sir, tell us from your vast experience what is needed. Sir, tell us what we can do as an individual as a member of very, very strong IIT community, how to fulfill our quota of service to the nation. The little travel I do, the little exposure I have with communities which is not elite (Rxxxx used the term), one can see a growing division, alienation and that make them a kind of soft target for people who are waging a war against the nation. Besides terror attack, we have many more disturbances within the country that is wiping off hundreds of lives every month for whom there is no support system, could be the only bread-earner of the family...we should condemn that and IIT community may ponder if they have any role to play.
Today we are mourning death of Ankik, because he was one of us. When the news first came, I first checked if our relatives in Pune are OK. We felt a kind of relieved after that. Anguished again when one of the dead was known to me. http://gskgp.blogspot.com/2010/02/tragedy.html I asked one of my NSS 1st year UG student friend this morning. He tried to be kind towards me - "Sir, it is human nature." The question is how we can become unselfish, what is our role as teacher-as student-as citizen of this country-as social being-as someone looking for a better career. And time is limited. How to fuse seemingly conflicting goals.
Sir, it would be interesting to receive some suggestions from you. Also your experience might tell us that certain goals are illusory or transient and not worth attempting.
Only to show that we are trying to do something seriously and sincerely and it is not all emotion, I am reproducing some of my posts to NSS googlegroup.