Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Children's Camp 2010

Waiting for NSS student San... to arrive. He wants to discuss activity to be taken up after mid-sem. Yes, mid-sem is on. Else this is the time for double lecture. In the morning prepared a report of the various works done by NSS volunteers who worked under my supervision and mailed it to NSS Head.

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.

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