Annual Progress Report 2014-2015
Harijan Sevak Sangh
Kingsway Camp, Delhi-110009
Harijan Sevak Sangh is a 83 years old voluntary organization, founded by Mahatma Gandhi, the father of the Nation. Now a days these organizations are called N.G.O.s. But we don’t want to be called N.G.O. Because we are working voluntarily. Those who are engaged in the promotion of the cause of Harijan Sevak Sangh, are working honorary. If at all some Sevaks are getting some amount, that is just for their livelihood. With small honorarium, they are working hard to achieve the goal set up by Mahatma Gandhi Ji.
Foundation of Harijan Sevak Sangh was laid down in 1932 by father of Nation Mahatma Gandhi, as a result of Puna Pact between Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. Ambedkar. Initially it was named as National Anti Untouchability League. Later on in 1934 it was registered as a Harijan Sevak Sangh. It was a matter of great inspiration, that its constitution, rules and regulations were framed by Mahatma Gandhi himself and after having suggestions from different leaders amended this Memorandum of Association Rules & Regulation by his own handwriting. He established this organization, nursed this organization, even used to beg from the people and made it a vibrant instrument to remove untouchability and brought the so called untouchables to the main stream of the Society. It was because of his efforts that the Society was saved from split.
Harijan Sevak Sangh has a number of achievements in its credit. All this is a “Golden History”. We are trying to maintain these historical movements. We may not have Gandhi Ji to lead us, but we have his ideas to guide us and we have a collective leadership to implement the ideas of Mahatma Gandhi.
The year 2014-2015 witnesses the maintenance of existing activities at a proper level and also expansion of some of the activities being run by Harijan Sevak Sangh. Some new ideas/ activities are also visualized during the year 2014-2015 which may show their presence in the years to come.
Though we have financial constraint. Major source of our income generated, goes as institutional share of our activities. Two major activities namely Kasturba Balika Vidyalaya and Thakkar Bapa Hostel and Primary School take away major share of the income generated by Harijan Sevak Sangh through donations and internal resource generation. The other residential primary schools run by State Branches also have to contribute good enough institutional share. Spare no scope for additional activities or plan some new programmes with deficit budget. It is always difficult to maintain the existing activities. But with the grace of God and inspiration of the ideas of Mahatma Gandhi, Harijan Sevak Sangh is not only continuing with the existing activities, but has taken new initiatives.
Meeting of Executive Committee and Central Board:
Two meetings of Executive Committee and one meeting of Central Board were held in the campus of Harijan Sevak Sangh. These meetings were presided over by Shri Sankar Kumar Sanyal, President, Harijan Sevak Sangh. The members of the Executive Committee and Central Board participated in the meetings. The Annual accounts for the year 2013-2014 and Annual Progress Report for the year 2013-2014 were unanimously approved by Central Board. Number of issues related to the development of Harijan Sevak Sangh were also discussed. The list of the Members of the Executive Committee, Members of Central Board as well as State Board Presidents are placed at Annexure-I, II and III.
Thakkar Bapa Residential Primary School (Hostel):
When Gandhi Ji started a movement against untouchability, one of the programmes taken up by him was to empower so called untouchables with education and vocational training. At that time the scavengers had major problem. They were living in unhygienic conditions and their children were also staying in those colonies. To bring them out of that atmosphere, Gandhi Ji started hostels-cum-schools for the children. At certain places only hostels were started and at some other places School-cum-Hostels were started. On those line an Hostel-cum-School was started in the campus of Harijan Sevak Sangh named as Thakkar Bapa Residential Primary School. During the year of reporting 200 children were staying. We had common kitchen for them. The children were given academic as well as social education. This hostel were like a “Sanskar Kendra” for the children. Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Govt. of India gave grant-in-aid @ ratio 75:25% but actually it came down @ ratio about 55:45%. Because the wages are not given as per prevailing rates in Delhi. Earlier the Aya working in the hostel used to be given Rs.1200/-P.M. out of which 20% used to be deducted as institutional share. This year we were told that the rates are revised, but only to the tune of Rs.2400/-P.M. for Aya and Cooks Rs.3000/-P.M. At the same time Harijan Sevak Sangh is giving fair wages to the workers working in the hostel. Keeping all these facts in view, the grant received for Thakkar Bapa Residential primary hostel, is reduced to almost 50%. The institutional share also has been increased from twenty percent to 25%. But the management is grateful to the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment for providing financial assistance to Thakkar Bapa Residential Primary Hostel. With this financial assistance, we are maintaining the Hostel. The hostel children celebrated different festival and National Festivals on different occasions which will be mentioned at the appropriate place in this report. During the year of reporting two Wardens, three Ayas, five cooks, one Helper, three Chowkidars, one Peon, two Sweepers, one office assistant-cum-typist and a part time Doctor had been working for the smooth functioning of Thakkar Bapa Residential primary school. This hostel also has a Library which was renovated by Korian children. Korian children alongwith their teachers come to visit this hostel every year. This year twenty trainee and teachers visited the hostel and school. It was good exchange between Korien culture and Indian culture, Korien language and India language etc. etc.
Bapa Ashram Residential Primary School:
A Primary School named Bapa Ashram residential Primary School is also being run in the premises of Harijan Sevak Sangh with the financial help from North Delhi Municipal Corporation under 95% Grant-in-aid Scheme. Mostly Hostel inmates are studying in this school. Some, day Scholars are also studying. Three teachers are working. Two vacancies are there. All our efforts to get permission to fill up these vacancies are yet to produce results. One Chowkiar and one part time Safai Karamchari is working. Harijan Sevak Sangh has its own building to house this school.
The children of this school are taking part in extra curriculum activities. They are taking keen interest in yoga training and it is a matter of satisfaction that children of Bapa Ashram Residential Primary School are participating various level of yoga competitions and during the year of reporting the children of this School participated at Zonal level competition and awarded second position to the Children. They also participated in programmes organized by the adjoining Village Dhaka Welfare Association and more than 90% awards in different sports were won by these children. The children of this school participated in 24 hours Charkha spinning programmes at Rajghat Smadhi on 2nd October and 30th January. The children also participated in the programme organized by Gandhi Smriti, Darshan Samiti at Gandhi Smriti Tees January Marg on October 2nd and January 30th. Most of the children from Bapa Ashram Primary School and Hostel participated in the prayer organized by Gandhi Smriti and Darshan Samiti at Tees January Marg on October 2nd and January 30th and also at Rajghat Samadhi on October 2nd and 30 January.
Family Counseling Centre:
A family counseling centre is being run by the Harijan Sevak Sangh since 1989 at its Headquarters at Kingsway Camp, Delhi-110009 with the grant-in-aid from the Central Social Welfare Board, Govt. of India since
1989-1990. There were two Counselors and two subordinate staff working the centre.
The prime objective of the centre is to provide Preventive, curative and rehabilitative services to the women who are or have been victims and atrocities and family violence under which distressed women are provided services like crises intervention, investigation in dowry death cases, counseling in case of marital/familial mal-adjustment. Efforts for reconciliation are taken in case of Separation for out of court settlement is made in marital cases and referral services like short stay, free legal aid, police assistance, assistance in case of rape, molestation, drug addiction, alcoholism, street abuse and support in psychological stress are provided in the centre by two trained Counselors with almost confidence and everything is kept strict confidential.
Besides these, the family counseling centre organizes legal literacy camps. Mohalla meetings, Awareness camps for men and women equally to empower family and community for establishing an ideal family in the Society. Since the establishment of the centre, it has been successfully dealt 121 cases of atrocities upon women. 127 new cases were registered and dealt during the year 2014-2015 in which 60 new cases were successfully solved and rehabilitated in ideal family life. The family counseling centre also organized a mohalla meetings during the year of reporting and celebrated “International Day of Peace” and also participated in celebration of “International Women’s day-2015”.
For providing effective counseling and referral services to the women in distress, the family counseling centre conducted networking with the various family counseling centres located in the various parts of NCT of Delhi and other Govt. and Non-Govt. organizations during the year 2014-15. The Family Counseling Centre during the year 2014-15 also conducted door to door mohalla and community visits and supplied information on various familial, marital and conjugal issues, perspectives and problems through distribution of Pamphlets, leaflets and broachers amongst the families and communities living in the nearby mohallas and localities. Thus Family Counseling Centre is performing an important role in preventing women’s right within family and in modern materialistic society.
Mata Kasturba Girls Hostel:
Harijan Sevak Sangh is running a Girls Hostel named Mata Kasturba Girls Hostel. During the year 2014-15, 55 girls made use of this hostel. Initially it was started to help girls coming from North East. But now other girls coming from different parts of India mostly North East and Jammu Kashmir are staying in the Hostel. Harijan Sevak Sangh takes only usage charges. Mess is managed by the girls themselves. I am happy to mention that girls who stayed in the Hostel, after completing education are scaling heights. One girl was in U.S.A. and worked with number of Universities. She visited Harijan Sevak Sangh on August 15, 2015, joined flag hoisting ceremony and shared her experiences. She recalled her memories, during her stay in the hostel. Another girl who stayed in this hostel and studied, now has been selected I.R.S. and has been given the responsibility in Taxation Ministry. One girl belonging to S.C. community from Kerala got 50th rank in I.A.S. competition. The girls who stayed here most of them are maintaining good relations with the Hostel management. Mata Kasturba Girls Hostel doing well to help the girls aspiring for studying in Delhi University.
Thakkar Bapa Charitable Dispensary:
This dispensary was started for the children of Bapa Ashram Hostel. But now people from adjoining areas also come and use this service. Patients from adjoining areas are also taking treatment. To some extent free medicines are given.
During the year 2014-15, the number of patients who got treatment in this dispensary was 12101. Sometime, we get financial assistance from North Delhi Municipal Corporation. But for the last few years no such grant-in-aid has been received. This dispensary is being run with the resources of Harijan Sevak Sangh. A malaria test centre is also being run in the dispensary. This malaria test centre is attached with N.D.M.C. Though, it is wrong to claim an achievement to have more and more patients. Because the efforts of any hospital should be to reduce patients, But as long as there are no efforts to reduce diseases, the number of patients will go on increasing. Therefore, the increase of patients will be considered as an achievement. This dispensary is a great source of help to the people of this area.
Prakritik Jeevan (Chikitsa) Kendra:
Prakritik Chikitsa is one area which was closer to the heart of Mahatma Gandhi. He himself practiced naturopathy and recommended others also to follow naturopathy principle. While emphasizing the importance of naturopathy, he himself said that after independence, whatever time is left with him, most of it, will be spent for the promotion of naturopathy. Harijan Sevak Sangh was established by Mahatma Gandhi. It is in the fitness of things that naturopathy centre should be added to the other activities of Harijan Sevak Sangh. Therefore the Prakritik Jeevan Kendra was established in the premises of Harijan Sevak Sangh. Till date it is only O.P.D. (Out Door Patient Department). We are planning also to have In Door Patient (I.P.D.) but it is taking time because of the financial constraints of Harijan Sevak Sangh. But it is a matter of satisfaction for us that though there are limitations, but even then Prakritik Jeevan Kendra is working to the satisfaction of needy persons. A small juice Bar having Neem Juice, Alovera Juice, Ambla Juice, Bottle Gourd Juice etc. etc. are available in Juice Bar. It is also gaining popularity and people come from adjoining areas and make use of this Juice Bar.
Gyan (Gandhian Institute of Ayurveda and Naturopathy):
Harijan Sevak Sangh started this venture with a great hope. O.P.D. (Out Door Patient) was established. We have experienced doctor to serve the patients. Efforts are also made to establish I.P.D. but it is linked with the permission to start Ayurveda College. N.O.C. from Delhi Governsment is required. Three conditions are set to get N.O.C. from the State Government. These three conditions are:-
- To have sufficient built up space to start college
- Sufficient scope of expansion of built up area.
- Assurance to the students who are given admission, to protect their interest at the eventually of closing of proposed Ayurveda College.
i). We fulfill these conditions. We have sufficient built up area to start the Ayurveda College. We also have sufficient scope of expansion of the built up area. So far the closer of the proposed institute is concerned, we are sure that it will never be closed, but if there is remote apprehension for closing, we have given in writing that the responsibility of students will be of Harijan Sevak Sangh.
ii). Inspection by the Directorate of AYUSH, Govt. of Delhi has been conducted twice.
iii). Our information is that both inspection reports are favouring N.O.C. to start Ayurveda College, but we have not received any clearance from the Department. When I met the Additional Secretary, She did not give anything in writing, but told that faculty should be appointed before getting N.O.C. from Delhi Government.
Now our dilemma is that N.O.C. from Delhi Government did not mean that Harijan Sevak Sangh is given permission to start the college. As per procedure laid down, after getting N.O.C. from State Government. We will have to go to AYUSH, Govt. of India as well as University to get permission to start Ayurveda College. It is very difficult to visualize time, being taken by AYUSH, Govt. of India and University to give us permission. In the absence of certainty, it is very difficult for Harijan Sevak Sangh to appoint faculties without college. It is also difficult to understand that when there is no college then where is the need of faculty. It is very much clear that when the college is to start, it can not be started without faculty. We have been pursuing Department of AYUSH, Govt. of NCR Delhi to give us N.O.C. fulfilling three condition as mentioned above. When we get permission to start college, we will definitely appoint faculty before the college is started. Efforts are being made, but our efforts are facing rough weather and we are unable to convince Department of AYUSH , Govt. of N.C.R. Delhi to provide N.O.C. to proceed further towards our dreamed project i.e. Ayurveda Sansthan. Efforts are being made, but till date no result. Our Ayurveda O.P.D. continues to function very well and we hope to get favourable decision to get N.O.C. from Department of AYUSH, Govt. of N.C.R. Delhi to start college.
Mahatma Gandhi Yoga Wellness Centre:
During the 150th Anniversary celebrations of Swami Vivekananda, Morariji Desai National Institute of Yoga, Govt. of India initiated District Yoga Wellness Centres to give yoga training to the aspiring citizen of the country. This project was only for three years. One such project was sanctioned to Harijan Sevak Sangh. We successfully completed three years and project was closed by Morarji Desai National institute of Yoga. They stopped financial assistance to this project. But we decided to continue this centre, even without the financial help from any source. I am happy to mention here that our efforts are producing result and our yoga centre, without getting any financial assistance from Govt. of India is gaining popularity and this centre has become self sustainable. Four classes are conducted every day with Sunday as Holiday. One evening class is also conducted. People from adjoining areas are appreciating these efforts and making use of the yoga centre. It is not merely a yoga training centre but also using yoga as a treatment source to treat the patients.
Mahadev Bhai Desai Library:
Harijan Sevak Sangh has a very good library named after Mahadev Desai the then Secretary of Mahatma Gandhi. We had a good collection of about 8000 books, good building to house this library. It was functioning very well. But after sad demise of Library Incharge, this work was given to some other persons at various intervals, but could not continue for a longer time. We are looking for a person to work in this library as a social service, because the financial resource of Harijan Sevak Sangh are so meager, that it is very difficult to give salary to the Librarian at prevailing rates in the Govt. Department. Hope our search wiil produce some result and we shall be able to re-start this library to propagate “Gandhian Ideology”.
Kasturba Memorial Exhibition:
As it is always being mentioned that Gandhi Ji lived in this Campus at different occasions, but Kasturba Ji lived here for a longer period. The place where Gandhi Ji and Kasturba Ji lived is known as ”Kasturba Kutir”. Earlier this place was used as staff residence or part of Mata Kasturba Girl Hostel. Now it has been converted into the Kasturba Memorial Exhibition. When we decided to establish Kasturba Memorial Exhibition and start working on it, then we could know the actual difficulty to establish Kasturba Memorial Exhibition. Kasturba Gandhi was deeply involved with Gandhi Ji therefore, It is very difficult to get some photos which are exclusively of Kasturba Ji. But I am glad to mention here that ultimately we could succeed to establish exhibition exclusively of Kasturba Ji. Whenever people visit this exhibition, they have appreciation for this. The building where Kasturba Ji and Gandhi Ji lived has been reinforced. Efforts are being made to construct four walls to protect and beautify this place, where people can come and get inspiration from this exhibition.
Navjeevan Trust was established by Mahatma Gandhi at Ahmedabad. The sole purpose of this trust was to publish books written by Gandhi Ji. It’s aim is to publish the books of Gandhi Ji and propagate the ideas of Gandhi Ji. Profit is not a motive. Number of books had been published by Navjeevan Trust. While writing the will of the Navjeevan Trust, Gandhi Ji has written that I do not have properties, I have nothing to give, but whenever royalty comes to Navjeevn Trust, 20% of this should be given to Harijan Sevak Sangh for Harijan Sewa. This practice is going on and Harijan Sevak Sangh is getting its share as directed by Mahatma Gandhi in his will. At some point of time, there was some issues about copy right of Gandhi Ji’s books to Navjeevan Trust. But I am glad to mention here that Sh. Jitender Desai the then Managing Trustee continue this contribution to the Harijan Sevak Sangh. I am also thankful and express my gratitude to Shri Vivek Desai, Managing Trustee of Navjeevan Trust for keeping words of Mahatma Gandhi and continue to help Harijan Sevak Sangh. During the year 2014-15, Navjeevan Trust has given an amount of Rs.6,63,204.00 to Harijan Sevak Sangh. As mentioned in the will of Mahatma Gandhi Navjeevan Trust is continuing its financial support. I on bahelf of Harijan Sevak Sangh express my heart felt thanks to Sh. Vivek Desai, Managing Trustee and other trustees to maintain the words of Mahatma Gandhi and continue their support to Harijan Sevak Sangh.
Bhangi Kast Mukti is one of the important programmes undertaken by Harijan Sevak Sangh. During Mahatma Gandhi’s time, it was a flagship activity of Harijan Sevak Sangh. First it was Bhangi Kasht Mukti and then it was Bhangi Mukti. Harijan Sevak Sangh is continuing this activity. We used to get financial support to the tune of Rs. Forty Thousand (approx.) from Gandhi Smark Nidhi, Central. But since last two years, we have not received this support from Gandhi Smark Nidhi Central. There are three workers working in this scheme. One worker is working with Gujarat Harijan Sevak Sangh, another worker is working with West Bengal Harijan Sevak Sangh and 3rd person is working with Maharashtra Harijan Sevak Sangh. As on today we are not required to convert head load latrines to hand flush latrines. But awareness of the mass to have latrines in every household is our main task. It is unfortunate that today when the people are scaling great heights, we are to pursue the household in this country to have latrine in their houses for their use. Open defalcation is a routine matter. No realization of its bad effects. Harijan Sevak Sangh is doing its efforts and educating the people to have latrines in houses. It is therefore necessary and we try to sensitize people about the bad effect of open defalcation. With the financial help from Gandhi Smark Nidhi Central, we are able to manage three workers. Though it looks negligible but we continue our best efforts, not only by these three workers, but whatever human resources are available with our State branches and Central office, We are trying to do our job.
Kasturba Balika Vidyalaya:
Brief background about the school:
Kasturba Balika Vidyalaya (KBV) is a girls senior secondary school with classes from 6th to 12th. It is situated in Ishwar Nagar, New Delhi-110065, which is its postal address. It is on main Mathura Road, very close to Ashram crossing on the Ring Road. It is thus in the heart of South Delhi. The school was set up in 1944 soon after the death of Smt. Kasturba Gandhi with an objective of providing quality education to girls from Harijan and other poor families, to be drawn from all over India. The land and building was donated by Shri Manmohan Dar.
Facts Sheet of Kasturba Balika Vidyalaya:
It is a senior secondary school for girls with classes from 6th to 12th. There were 587 girls in the school in the year 2014-15 who were distributed over 16 sections. The main school building was constructed in 1972 with approved plans from MCD. It has ground plus three stories and has 26 rooms in all. The class rooms are of spacious size of 500 sq.ft. and confirm to CBSE requirements. The school has three laboratories of Chemistry. Home Science and Biology. It also has a library, computer lab and an auditorium. The school has a covered area of about 25,000 sq. ft. There is some space available in the land of the school to build more buildings and rooms.
There were 19 teachers in the school although the sanctioned strength was 22. This consists of 7 post graduate teachers or PGTs and 15 trained graduate teachers or TGTs. In all there are 29 members of staff in the school. The school had only arts or humanities stream in plus two classes. But in the year 2014-15, we received approval from Government of Delhi and CBSE to start commerce stream also. Admission for this were planned to start from 1st July 2015.
Hostel and construction of new hostel building:
The school has a hostel with a capacity for 200 students. It has existed since the beginning in 1944. As the building had become old and dilapidated, Government of Delhi sanctioned an amount of Rs.4.14 crores for construction of new hostel building in October 2009 through the Department for SC, ST, OBC and Minorities. The work was entrusted to a Government agency, Irrigation and Flood Control Dept. Mrs. Sheila Dikshit, Chief Minister of Delhi laid the foundation stone of this building on 18 November 2010. The construction of the building was completed in April 2014. There were 170 girls in the hostel in 2014-15. The operational expenses were met by a grant from Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment, Government of India.
As per our audited accounts for 2014-15, the school had a total income of Rs.2.19 crores and total expenditure of Rs.2.37 crores leaving a deficit of Rs.17.12 lacs. The larges item in this was on the salary account, amounting to Rs.11.43 lacs. The deficit occurs because the school runs mainly on Government grants, which cover only a part of our expenses, leaving a gap by design. Under Government rules for aided schools, we are not allowed to charge any fees from the students. In addition the school also suffered a deficit of Rs.16.40 lacs on the hostel account, for the same reason of Government grant from Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, GOI only covering part of our essential and mandated expenses. As both the school and the hostel run in an integrated manner, the total deficit during the year amounted to Rs.33.52 lacs. We met our deficit from internal resources and donations. We have been passing through a very difficult financial situation during the last many years and this has continued during the current year as well.
The academic results:
For the examinations held in March 2015 and results declared in May 2015, the school achieved 94% results in class 12th Board exam and 100% for class 10th. Results in other classes were from 81% to 100%. Results are however poorer if we take into account only SAs which is pen and paper examination. Efforts are being made to bring about an improvement in this as well.
Our Scholarship Scheme:
We started the scholarship scheme for our girls passing out from class 12, for their higher studies. We gave a scholarship of Rs.10,000/- each to 28 girls in 2014 from funds donated by Inner Wheel Club Delhi South and some individual donors. We could have given more scholarships, but majority of girls either did not want to study further in a regular college or did not get admission. Efforts are continuing for higher motivation and career counseling for the girls passing out from class 12th.
Educational tours for students:
We have been sending our most meritorious girls for educational and fun tours to cities of tourist interest. In 2014-15, we sent a total of 75 girls on such tours 25 girls were sent to Mussoorie, 50 to Nainital. These tours are meant for meritorious girls as an incentive and only a small part of the cost is charged from them.
Working with companies under Corporated Social Responsibility (CSR):
In 2014-15, two companies gave us assistance from their CSR funds. We received assistance of about 80 lacs from Tech Mahindra Foundation on various items of academic work, infrastructure development and others. They worked in the school through three NGOs, ASPIRE, Magic Bus and Sakshi.
An amount of Rs.64.77 lacs was sanction by ONGC Ltd. for various aspects of renovation of school building.
Independence Day i.e. August 15th was celebrated in the campus of Harijan Sevak Sangh. Flag was hoisted, culture programmes Yoga presentation and physical exercise were the salient feature of this National Day. Sweets were distributed among the participants.
26th January known as the “Republic Day” was celebrated in the campus of Harijan Sevak Sangh. Flag hoisting ceremony, culture programme and sweets distribution are the important programmes of this day. Lecture was organized to recall the sacrifice done by freedom fighter and to declare this day as a “Republic Day”.
Thakkar Bapa Jayanti:
Thakkar Bapa was the founder Secretary of Harijan Sevak Sangh. He, under the guidance of Mahatma Gandhi and then independently shaped this organization with the help of the then great people. His contribution to the development of Harijan Sevak Sangh will always be shining star and light house to guide the future generations. His birth anniversary is celebrated in the Harijan Sevak Sangh. During the year 2014-15, the programme was organized on November 29th which is the birth day of Thakkar Bapa. The programme was organized near his statute erected in the campus of Harijan Sevak Sangh. Workers and officials working in the Harijan Sevak Sangh paid tribute to Thakkar Bapa. Jaggry and Groundnuts were distributed. Because in those days, these were the things available in the market at a cheaper rate. Therefore Thakkar Bapa used to love these things. Distribution of Jaggry and Groundnuts is the right things to recall the commitment of Thakkar Bapa to the poor people by using these things, Shri Thakkar Bapa tried to be one in the poor people of this country. He used to identify himself with the poor.
Mata Kasturba Punya Thithi:
Mata Kasturba Gandhi died in February 22nd 1945. Her date of birth is not exactly known, therefore we commemorate Kasturba Ji on 22nd February. A conference was organized on 22.02.2015. The subject of the conference was right of women. It was organized in the campus of Harijan Sevak Sangh. Girls from Kasturba Balika Vidyalaya, Children from Bapa Ashram Residential Primary School, workers from Harijan Sevak Sangh and people from adjoining areas took part in the programme. The speaker recall the services and sacrifice rendered by Kasturba Gandhi to achieve freedom. The speaker also remember the movement led by Kasturba Gandhi to protect the rights of the women.
Harijan Sevak Sangh is the result of Puna Pact between Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. Ambedkar. This pact was signed on 24th September 1932. Therefore it is considered that 24th September is the day when the movement against untouchability was initiated by Mahatma Gandhi. Since then Harijan Sevak Sangh has traveled a long way to remove untouchability from the society. Number of programmes are organized. One of the programmes organized by Harijan Sevak Sangh is “Community Meal” for people of different cast at different places. People from all walks of life come together and dine together. On 24th September 2014 a Community Lunch was organized to commemorate this great day. During the year 2014-15 “lnHkkouk lEesyu” was also organized. People from different places attended this conference. Have discussion to strengthen mutual trust in the society. “lnHkkouk lEesyu” was followed with community lunch where people joined to have lunch together.
Baba Lal Singh Memorial:
Baba Lal Singh was a great freedom fighter and committed follower of Mahatma Gandhi. After India achieved freedom, he devoted all of his life for the promotion of “Khadi Gramodyog and Protection of Women rights”. After his sad demise, he is always rememberd for the contribution to strengthen programmes initiated by Mahatma Gandhi. During 2014-2015 a programme was jointly organized by Baba Lal Singh Smarak Samiti, Khadi Ashram, Kamla Nagar and Harijan Sevak Sangh in the campus of Gandhi Ashram. His great devotee Dr. Seeta Bimbra and her team organized this programme. Charkha spinning was also organized on this day.
This day is a great day to strengthen the families. This is also the sign of affection between brothers and sisters. During the year 2014-15, Raksha Bandhan festival was organized in the campus of Harijan Sevak Sangh. Children of Bapa Ashram Primary School tied Rakhies to their brothers studying in the same school. A few children were allowed to go to Rastrapatti Bhavan to celebrate Raksha Bandhan with “Mahamahim Rastrapatti Ji” and few children also went to “Hon’ble Prime Minister” to tie Rakhies of hand spun yarn as regards and affection to the Hon’ble Prime Minister. This was a great day for those who could meet to the Mahamahim Rastrapatti Ji and Hon’ble Prime Minister. The children enjoyed this festival a large. Sweets were distributed among the children.
Harijan Sevak Sangh, West Bengal:
(a). Open Shelter for Children in Need of Care & Protection:
Open Shelter for Children in need of Care & Protection under integrated Child Protection Scheme (ICPS) is an innovative programme which started its journey in 2011-12. It is an elaborately revised programme of integrated Programme for Street Children (IPSC). Harijan Sevak Sangh, Bengal had served the IPSC schemes and came under the ICPS scheme since its inception in 2011-12.
The scheme initially started its journey at Sailajyoti Bhavan 250A/29, G.T. Road (N), Liluah, Howrah w.e.f. 01.04.2011 vide sanction Memo No.040/SCPS-WB dated 31.03.2014 with 41 inmates coming from the poorest of the poor families residing in the geographical area of Liluah, Bhotbagan, Bhattanagar, Ghusuri. The Sangh also obtained its license under The West Bengal Women’s and Children’s Licensing Rules 1958 to run the shelter at the above premises vide Serial No.1787 dated 12.10.2010.
Later the Shelter was shifted to its present location at 122/1, Naskar Para Road, Ghusuri, Howrash-711 107 w.e.f. 01.02.2012 under prior intimation to the Controller of Vagrancy and DCPS. Howrah, Government of West Bengal. The license under The West Bengal Women’s and Children’s Licensing Rules, 1958 was renewed for the new address vide Serial No.2104 dated 12.09.2013 with period of license fronm 01.04.2012 to 31.03.2014. Presently the License Serial No. is 2251 dated 17.09.2014 with a period from 01.04.2014 to 31.03.2016.
During the current financial year (2014-15) the Open Shelter has been running satisfactorily at 122/1, Naskar Para Road, Ghusuri, Howrah -711 107. During this year 12 children were newly admitted whereas 2 children were readmitted. 15 children left. There were 27 children in the roll on 1st April 2014 but at present the strength is 26 at the end of the financial year. These children come to the shelter from our collection points located at Naskar Para Road, Ghusuri, Howrah, Jaya Bibi road, Ghusuri, Howrah and Deshapriyanagar, Bhattanagar, Liluah, Howrah. Besides these collection points, children are also referred to by CWC, Howrah, Welfare Officers of the Controller of Gagrancy and in some cases due to its popularity in the area parents bring their children directly for admission in which case their identities are thoroughly verified. The workers of collection points and those of the Open Shelter carry out extensive survey to find out possible pockets where children live in extreme penury and are in need of care and protection.
All the children get nutritious food as per circular issued by the Department of Women & Child Development and Social Welfare, Government of West Bengal vide Memo No.912(20) CD&WDSW/14 dated 18.02.2014 received by us through DCPS, Howrah vide their Ref.No.41(6)/1/DCPS/How dated 11.03.2014. In addition to the diet chart supplied by them the children are also provided with milk 3 days a week.
The children are provided with proper clothing and school uniform, 2 sets of summer clothing, 2 sets of winter garments, 2 sets of clothes for formal occasions, 2 sets of school uniforms, 1 pair of shoes and socks have been provided to the children during the current financial year. In addition to these school bags, vests etc. have been provided to the children.
25 children out of 26 attend formal school. Out of them 6 children attend secondary school and the rest 19 are attending primary school. They are coached in the shelter by the shelter staff, especially the Care Givers cum Bridge Course Educators. Children studying in higher classes like Standard VIII, X etc. are admitted to a coaching center where they are taught by 3 tutors. Apart from this, a private tutor has been appointed who come to the shelter 4 days a week and guide the rest children in their studies. An art teacher has also been appointed who come to the shelter once in a week and teach them the art of painting.
As regards health care services the shelter has a close connection with T.L. Jaiswal Hospital, the Government run hospital adjacent to the shelter. The Superintendent of the hospital has assured all help and cooperation regarding health care of the children. Besides this, the children are also treated by Dr. Pushpendu Lahiri, Pediatrician, Dr. Sandip Porel, Eye Specialist and Dr. Rammohan Chatterjee, Homeopathic, Dr. Abhoy De. Psychiatrist also treat the children. They all have extended their helping hands for the health care of the children of the shelter. We, all staff members owe to them for their philanthropic support and co-operation and hope to get their blessings in future also. On 12.12.2014, 17 children are undergone through a blood group, hemoglobin and HIV test.
(b) Residential Primary School:
A part of one of the flourishing growth centers of the Sangh, HSS Vidyashram Residential Primary School at Dhupguri, Jalpaiguri popularly known as Ashram Vidyalaya continued to serve its 125 pupils enrolled from socially and economically excluded communities of the area. The school offers formal primary education from class one to class five. Class wise distribution of pupils are : class I – 22; class II -28; class III-25; class IV-27; class V-23. The school holds regular tests and performances of each student and every student is regularly monitored. Special coaching classes are organized for laggard students to help them to get at par with other students. Besides following the educational syllabus formulated by the West Bengal Primary Education Council, the curriculum includes regular morning prayers on Gandhian model, physical fitness regime and a host of extracurricular activities intended to build up physical, mental and spiritual character of the students. Extracurricular activities include safai, dance drama, debates, recitation, music and sporting activities. The students have presented their cultural activities during the annual function. Rabindra Jayanti, Nazrul Jayanti, Independence Day, Republic Day and Saraswati Puja. The programmes were attended by eminent personalities of the locality including local MLAs, MP, BDO, Physicians, social workers etc. Academic performance of the students during the year was highly satisfactory. 90% of class I students, 82% of class II students, 80% of class III students, 87% of class VI students and 100% of class V students could pass final tests at the end of the last academic year and were promoted to respective higher classes. The classes are held from 11:00 am to 3:00 P.M. preceded by prayer (5:50 am), physical exercise (6:00 am), personal cleanliness (6:30 am), breakfast (7:00 am), study hours (7:30 am to 9:00 am), campus safai (9:00 am), play and recreation (9:30 am) and bath and lunch (10 am to 10:45 am). After the school students enjoy free time followed by campus enrichment through gardening and games after tiffin break. The evening starts with prayer at 6:00 pm followed by supervised study hour upto 9:00 pm after which students take dinner and go to bed. Lights off at 10.00 pm. Academic standard of the students are very high and students find no difficulty in getting admission to outside mainstream schools. The school has five teachers including the headmistress but occasionally invites outside scholars to interact with the students to enlarge their knowledge base. Steps have been taken to revise the curriculum so as to integrate co-curricular activities along with the curricular activities. There is a system of regular health care with the help of local medical practitioner.
(c) Rajiv Gandhi National Creche Scheme:
During the current financial year 20 creche centers were approved by the Central Social Welfare Board although we are running 22 creche units. All the centers are functioning satisfactorily but are suffering from utter financial difficulties as the funds provided is meager compared to the present market value and that too highly irregular. The Central Social Welfare Board has show caused two crèche centers viz. Kadamtala Sishu Lalani Kendra at Dhupguri, Jalpaiguri and HSS Chakchaka Branch, C/o Chakchaka Nirmal Education Society at Coochbehar.
It is worth mentioning that we had intimated earlier to the Central Social Welfare Board about the bad functioning of the Kadamtala Sishu Lalani Kendra at Dhupguri, Jalpaiguri and proposed its shifting to Pallyjyoti Pathagar at Vill + P.O. Kukrahati, Purba Medinipur – 721 658 w.e.f. 1st October 2014 where we are already running a crèche and vide our letter No.HSS/SS/76/2014-15 dated 28.09.2014 followed by a reminder vide our letter No.HSS/SS/122/2014-15 dated 06.12.2014. But still now no reply has been received from their end.
Regarding the crèche center at Chakchaka, Coochbehar, we have also communicated our findings vide our letter No.HSS/ SS/81/2013-14 dated 25.10.2013 much earlier the inspection of the CSWB authorities with the suggestion that the center be shifted either to Vill + P.O. Vidyashram, Dhupguri, Jalpaiguri or to 122/1, Naskarpara Road, Ghusuri, Howrah. CSWB has agreed to the later suggestion vide their letter No.F 52-1(WB)/09-10/CR/1657 dated 14.02.2014 and the center was accordingly shifted to 122/1, Naskarpara Road, Ghusuri. Howrah address under intimation to the CSWB vide our letter No.HSS/SS/125/2013-14 dated 10.03.2014. The center is running well.
All these facts have been stated in the reply of the show cause vide our letter No.HSS/SS/154/2014-15 dated 12.02.2015.
Gandhi Ghar Kursela, Bihar:
During Quit India Movement, Gandhi Ji travelled in Bihar. He also went to Kursela and addressed a meeting there. After Gandhi Ji’s sad demise the remains of Gandhi Ji were immersed in different rivers of India. One such place is Uttarvahini Ganga Kosi Kursela. Since then a Sarvodaya Mela is organized in Kursela. These days Shri Naresh Yadav, Ex. M.P. and Vice President of Harijan Sevak Sangh takes initiative to organize this programme. He organized a programme on February 11, 2014 at Gandhi Ghar Kursela to pay homage to Gandhi Ji. Two minutes silence was observed at 11.00 A.M. Officials from Kursela, people of adjoining area and Ashramites took part in Prayer, Bhajans and meeting. The meeting was addressed by Shri Naresh Yadav, Ex. M.P. and Vice President of Harijan Sevak Sangh alongwith other dignitaries.
HARIJAN SEVAK SANGH, UTTER PRADESH:
Harijan Sevak Sangh, Utter Pradesh is running two Residential Primary Schools for Scheduled Caste girls only. One school is being run as Sarvodaya Ashram Residential School at Sikanderpur, Hardoi. 200 girls are studying and staying in this Hostel. The other school named as Vinoba Residential Girls School at Barabanki, 100 girls are studying and staying in this Ashram school. Earlier both boys and girls were getting education in these schools. But later on these schools were converted into only girls schools. Teachers, Cooks, Ayas and other staff total put together about 43 are getting employment through these schools.
State Harijan Sevak Sangh with the help of other similar organizations is making efforts to build up mutual trust between different castes and religions. In addition to that the Harijan Sevak Sangh is also working for the improvement of health. During the year 2014-15, 3150 Scheduled Caste families are benefitted through Health Orientation Programmes. 5560 individuals are benefitted through health camps and 150 eyes operation were conducted without any charges.
Self Help Groups in 30 Villages interior of Lakhimpur Kheri District most of them belonging to Scheduled Caste families are organized during the year. Efforts were made to get patta for scheduled caste farmers in the District of Hardoi. In the District of Hardoi 50 women were given training for sewing. They are now running 50 centers giving training to girls in the area. With the help of Bhuraj Sewa Sansthan a Khadi institution, 345 spinners and weavers are given job work.
In addition to that, the common prayer, common Yajna, common meal etc. are also organized by Utter Pradesh Harijan Sevak Sangh.
MINISTRY OF SOCIAL JUSTICE AND EMPOWERMENT:
Harijan Sevak Sangh with the partial financial help from Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment is running residential primary schools in some parts of the country. Two such hostels are being run in Delhi in Gandhi Ashram, Kingsway Camp, Delhi and Ishwer Nagar, Okhla, Delhi. Other school is in Dhupguri (W.B.), two residential schools are run, one in Sikanderpur, Hardoi (U.P) and other in Barabanki (U.P). These residential schools have been mentioned at different places in this report. But there are other areas where such schools are being run.
- Shri Parikshit Lal Ashramshala, Ahmedabad (Gujarat):- This school is run through State Branch of Harijan Sevak Sangh i.e. Gujarat Harijan Sevak Sangh. This school is very near to Sabarmati Ashram. School is also very near to our Safai Vidhyalaya. Gujarat Vidhyapeeth and Navjeevan Trust also located in the nearby area. Our school is benefitted with all these historical creations. Sh. Jayesh Bhai Patel, President, Gajarat Harijan Sevak Sangh takes personal interest to maintain the level of this school.
- NMR Subramaniam Memorial Residential Primary School, Madurai: - This is old school and helping to poor scheduled cast children from the adjoining area.
- Residential Primary School, Thirucoilur (Tamilnadu):- This is also very old residential school which is catering the needs of poor scheduled cast people of that area.
In addition to these two schools which are being run with the partial financial assistance from the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Tamil Nadu Harijan Sevak Sangh is also running hostels for Scheduled cast girls with the help of State Government. These hostels are doing their best to help children belonging to scheduled cast to pursue their studies in these schools.
3(a). Annual Report for 2014-2015 of Harijan Sevak Sangh (Tamilnadu).
On the occasion of Acharya Vinoba Bhave Jayanthi (Sept.11th) Mahatma Gandhi Jayanthi (2nd Oct.) and Didi Nirmala Deshpande Jayanthi (Oct.17.) Harijan Sevak Sangh Tamil Nadu State branch joined with Gandhian Integrated Forum Trust, Khadi Gramodyog Bhavan and similar minded Gandhian organizations in organizing Tamil Nadu State and Chennai Dist. Level Competitions.
One of the State Level Prize winner collecting the Prize from His.Excellency Dr.K. Rosaiahn on 2nd Oct.2014.
Our SRS Sarvodaya Girls Hostel arranged Hindi classes for students.
Thiru.K.Rosaiah, His Excellency the Governor of Tamil Nadu has kindly released the Gandhi Peace Mission logo and launched Tamil Nadu State Level events on December 24,.2014 at Vinoba Hall, Thakkar Bapa Vidylaya Campus, 58, Veenkatanarayana Road, T.Nagar, Chennai-600 017 on the occasion of observing 70th anniversary of Gandhi’s “Noakhali Pilgimage”. organised by Tamil Nadu Harijan Sevak Sangh’s Branch along with Thakkar Bapa Vidyalaya Samithi, Gandhian Integrated Forum Trust and other Gandhian Institutions under the Gandhi Peace mission for Southern Region. Our All India President Prof.Sankar Kumar Sanyal, Justice S.Mohan, Retired Judge of Supreme Court, Dr.J. Umamaheswari, IAS (retd.), Prof. N. Radhakrishnan, Shri. Sethukuman Sri.V.K. Sthanunathan joined in the event.
Harijan Sevak Sangh, T.N.State Branch is taking active part in the Freedom at Midnight Celebrations for the past several years. This year also it took part, rendered prayers, where Eminent personalities - IAS, IPS Officers, Religious Representative, Social Activists, Educationists from various walks of life have taken part on 14th August from 20.30 hrs to 00.30 hours on 15th August, 2014 at Mahatma Gandhi Statue, Marina.
2nd October, to 30th January,2015 Reading of Gandhiji’s Auto biography: Based on the experience in the Harijan Sevak Sangh Hostel, 2014-2015 a Big movement was launched all over Tamil Nadu in schools and colleges. H.E the governor of Tamil Nadu Inaugurated 116 days Gandhi to Sarvodaya Movement on 6th October,2014 at our SRS Sarvodaya Girls Hostel Premises
Didi’s Death Anniversary was observed on 1st May 2014: Offered Floral Tributes, Rendered inter-religious prayers for peace.
On 8.11.2014 Prizes were distributed to the winners of various competitions organised at Chennai District level.
18.2.2015, Shri Sudhir Lodha, Member Minorities Commission, T.n Inaugurated Quiz competitions on Mahatma Gandhiji’s Autobiography. Shri.Naresh Gupta, IAS,(retd.) Former, Chief Electoral Officer and Member, Central Administrative Tribunal gave audio video presentation.
On 20th Sept., 2014 Our SRS Sarvodaya Girls Hostel student Ms. V.Kaavya, who secured highest marks in 10th Std. was honoured by Dr.T.S. Sridhar, IAS , Addl. Chief Secretary and Commissioner, Revenue, Dept., with the contribution of Dr. J. Uma Maheswari, who created this honour in memory of her mother Late Smr. Rajalakshmi Jayaraman .
Miss. Mahalakshmi, one our SRS Sarvodaya Girls Hostel student was helped to join in Diploma in Nursing by MA GANDHI TRUST.
Deepavali, Chirstmas was celebrated. Navaratri kolu was organised. Everyday, one prominent person was invited for pooja. One day fasting was observed by the students during Ramzan.
Dandya Dance was taught to our students by Smt. Amita Bhandari , President of the Hostel committee and her group and performed with students.
Our Harijan Sevak Sangh students of Presidency Girls Higher Secondary school got the 1st prize of Rs.3000/- and a citation at Chennai District Level School Quiz competition on Mahatma Gandhiji’s Autobiography.
I Prize: Presidency Girls Hr.Sec.School, SRS Sarvodaya Girls Hostel Students. Mrs. R.Shanthi, Warden receiving School Recitation. Team Members: Ms.M.Prasanthi & Ms.V. Vijayalakshmi
From 75th year of Harijan Sevak Sangh’s formation, Meenakshi Sudara Rajan Engineering College, through our Vice-President Ms. K.S.Babai, getting one Free Engineering Seat. Last Year Ms.Sivagami from our Tirukoilur hostel got the Seat in B.E. (I.T).
- Utter Pradesh:- It is already mentioned that two schools, one at Sikanderpur and other at Barabanki are managed by Utter Pradesh Harijan Sevak Sangh. There is third school named Kasturba Awashiya Vidyalaya, Modaha, Distt. Hamirpur (U.P). This is also very old residential school. Unfortunately the building of this school is in very poor shape, the management of this school have been requesting the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment to give them permission to shift this school. The permission is still awaited. If the permission is received, school will be shifted and then it can cater to the requirement of scheduled cast people of that area.
- Uttrakhand: Harijan Ashram School Awasiya Vidyalaya, Dhari Kalogi, Uttrakashi – The school and hostel are housed in the rented building. There is a good piece of land available with the school management, but because of the funds constraint, the management is not in a position to build the school and hostel. Moreover the person who is a freedom fighter and also Ex. Member of Parliament who is the Manager of this school is not keeping good health, therefore he is not in a position to devote much of his time to the smooth running of school. Those who are working in the school are not getting their remuneration in time. It becomes very difficult for the management of this school to run this school. The school is very important. People from far flung areas are making best use of the school, if timely payment of the minimum remuneration which is given to the staff is ensured then it will be a great help to the scheduled cast of that area.
- Jharkhand:- One residential school in the name of Vinoba Balika Awasiya Vidyalaya, Daltonganj, Palamu, Jharkhand is also helping the Scheduled Cast peoples from the adjoining area. But because of the long pending grant-in-aid, it had become very difficult to run this school.
Harijan Sevak Sangh, Delhi