Saturday, July 29, 2006

Sewa Bharati hands over 248 houses for tsunami victims in Nagapattinam

By Ramesh Subramaniam

An impressive function was held at Keechankuppam village in the outskirts of Nagapattinam town on July 6 to mark the handing over of 248 permanent houses constructed by Sewa Bharati, Tamil Nadu, for the tsunami victims. The religious ceremonies like griha pravesh, go puja, vastu shanti puja, etc., were conducted on July 5 and early morning of July 6.

Swami Goutamananda, president of Ramakrishna Mutt, Chennai, first inaugurated the majestic arch erected at the entrance of Vyas Nagar, the name given to the new colony. Very appropriately, a statue of Maharishi Ved Vyas has also been installed at the entrance in a small but beautiful garden. After the inauguration, all the dignitaries proceeded to the stage.

The dignitaries included Shri Mohan Bhagwat, Sarkaryavah of RSS, Shri Raman, Deputy Collector of Nagapattinam, Shri Radha, IAS, Chief Planning Officer of Nagapattinam, Shri Kothandaraman, chairman of Nagapattinam Municipality, Dr Shankar Tattwawadi, overseas coordinator of Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh (HSS), Shri Shyam Parande, secretary of Sewa International, Dr Senkottayan, state president of Sewa Bharati, Tamil Nadu, and others. The newly constructed houses have been handed over to the government and not to the tsunami victims directly.

Inaugurating the plaque bearing the names of the main donors of the first phase of the project, viz IDRF-USA, Sewa International-UK and Sewa International-USA Chapter, Swami Goutamananda applauded the exemplary spirit of solidarity shown by the volunteers and office-bearers of the three main donor organisations in helping the victims of the tsunami disaster in the most appropriate way by giving them a permanent shelter, which is a basic necessity. He also praised the numerous selfless volunteers of Sewa Bharati, Tamil Nadu, for helping the tsunami victims at every stage since the attack on December 26, 2004.

Shri Mohan Bhagwat remarked that the spirit with which Sewa Bharati volunteers rendered a yeoman’s service is quite different from others. “Sewa Bharati renders service with the spirit of ‘service to man is service to Almighty and nation’ and not with any other considerations. Also the volunteers feel that it is their duty to give their time and energies to the needy sections of the society,” he said and added that the Sewa Bharati has been successful in kindling the spirit of service in the recipients as well, unlike usual cases where the recipients keep permanently receiving and are never made to participate and share their time and energy for service activities. Shri Bhagwat handed over a model of one block of four houses to Shri Radha, symbolically to mark the handing-over of the fully completed 248 permanent houses in the first phase.

Shri Radha, Shri Raman and Shri Kothandaraman, who also spoke at the function, were unanimous in applauding the brilliant spirit of selfless service demonstrated by Sewa Bharati’s volunteers.

Dr Shankar Tattwawadi said he is very satisfied with the speedy and efficient construction work, which has been accomplished by Sewa Bharati. The entire fisher folk of Keechankuppam and Akkarapettai who attended the function thanked the Sewa Bharati and all donors for their unique gesture of compassion showered on them.

In the first phase of construction the IDRF-USA has funded the cost of 100 houses, Sewa International-UK 70 houses and Sewa International-USA 40 houses. The site of the colony is located on the bank of back-waters and fishermen can bring their boats to the backyard of their colony. Each house measures 390 sq.ft. as against 325 sq.ft. recommended by the government. Many private testing agencies were employed by the Sewa Bharati to ascertain the quality of work at every stage of construction.
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Thursday, July 13, 2006

VHPA Condemns Mumbai and Srinagar Blasts

To help the families of victims of these horrendous blasts, VHP-America is appealing for funds from the Hindu American community. Your contributions are tax deductible. You can write your checks in favor of VHPA with "Mumbai Blast Victims" in the subject line.

Please mail your contributions to:

VHPA
P. O. Box 441505,
Houston, TX 77244


You will get a receipt for your contributions. You can also contribute online by visiting www.vhp-america.org. For more information in this regards, please contact Girish Gandhi, at 973-580-8451 or email him.

*Note, the website is still awaiting updating but I received word from them that this should be done within the next 24 hours. To donate, all you need to do is click on the "Donate Now" section at the right hand side.

Press Release

VHPA Condemns Mumbai and Srinagar Blast Victims and Sets up Relief Funds for Blast Victims

Contact Information: Gaurang Vaishnav, vicharak@gmail.com , 732-744-0851

June 12, 2006

On behalf of Hindu American community of USA, Vishwa Hindu
Parishad of America (VHPA) expresses its deepest sympathies for the victims of most recent bomb blasts in Mumbai and Srinagar. More than 190 persons are officially dead and the number of seriously injured runs in several hundreds if not more. VHPA shares the grief of the families of the departed ones, and assures that Hindus of America stand united with their brothers and sisters in Mumbai and Srinagar in this time of their need.

CLICK AND DONATE

To help the families of victims of these horrendous blasts, VHPA is appealing for funds from the Hindu American community. Your contributions are tax deductible. You can write your checks in favor of VHPA with "Mumbai Blast Victims" in the subject line.

Please mail your contributions to: VHPA, P. O. Box 441505, Houston, TX 77244. You will get a receipt for your contributions. You can also contribute online by visiting www.vhp-america.org . For more information in this regards, please contact Girish Gandhi, at 973-580-8451 or email him vp_seva@vhp-america.org.

Vishwa Hindu Parishad of America strongly condemns these blasts. These are heinous acts of cowardice. This is not the first time that innocent people have been targeted by terrorists in recent years. The shootings in Akshardham, attempts to blow away Ramjanmabhoomi Mandir, communal riots in Mau, bombing in Delhi marketplaces during last Diwali season, bombings in Varanasi, and the recent explosions in Mumbai and Srinagar, all point to the fact that these acts of terrorism are not random, disconnected happenstances. A nefarious design seeking to terrorize and thereby, weaken India's resolve is the motivation behind these acts of terrorism. Unfortunately, the state and central authorities of India have been callous and blatantly negligent in terms of protecting acknowledging the gravity of the situation and actually doing something about it.

The government authorities must take notice, and act with a sense of urgency to rectify this situation. Unfortunately, till so far, all that the government has done is issue effete statements dipped in bravado, but bereft of any meaningful action, whatsoever. It is only action, concrete and focused, which will solve the pressing problem of terrorism rooted in Islamic extremism that India currently faces. We urge all concerned persons to register their protest with the Indian Embassy by expressing their outrage at the callousness of the Indian establishment in terms of its commitments to the protection of lives and property in particular, and national integrity in general.

Vishwa Hindu Parishad (World Hindu Council) of Americ (VHPA), founded in 1970 and incorporated in the state of New York in 1974, is an independent, nonprofit, tax- exempt and volunteer-based charitable organization serving the needs of Hindu community in USA. It aims to build a dynamic and vibrant Hindu society rooted in the eternal values of Dharma and inspired by the lofty ideal of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam, i.e. the entire creation is one family.