Swami Atmasthanandaji, President, Ramakrishna Math and Ramakrishna Mission, continues to be at Seva Pratishthan. There is no significant change in his health condition.
Swami Smarananandaji, Vice-President, is scheduled to return to Belur Math on 12 November after his visit to Gol Park and Kankurgachhi centres. He will be visiting Baghbazar centre from 23 November to 4 December. He is keeping well.
Swami Vagishanandaji, Vice-President, is scheduled to visit Nagpur from 1 to 9 November, Krishnanagar (Dist. Nadia) from the 16th to 19th, and Barisha from 28 to 30 November. He is in good health.
Swami Prabhanandaji, Vice-President, is scheduled to visit Patna from 1 to 7 November, Medinipur from 13 to 19 November, and Kankurgachhi from 25 to 30 November. He is keeping well.
Durga Puja was celebrated at Belur Math from 8 to 11 October with due solemnity and joy. Ignoring occasional rains, about two lakh devotees attended the Puja to receive the blessings of the Divine Mother. The Kumari Puja performed on 9 October drew huge crowds, and the Sandhi Puja on that day was also attended by many devotees. Cooked Prasad was served to nearly 45,000 devotees on Ashtami day and to about 1,50,000 devotees during the four days. Click here for photos of Durga Puja celebration at Belur Math.
New Mission Centre
A new branch centre of the Ramakrishna Mission has been started at Gwalior in Madhya Pradesh. Click here for photos of Gwalior Ashrama.
The address of the Gwalior centre is
Ramakrishna Mission Ashrama,
Madhya Pradesh 474011
Phone numbers: (0751) 234-1091 and 234-2241
Email id <[email protected]>
Celebration of the 150th Birth Anniversary of Swami Abhedanandaji Maharaj
Swamiji’s Ancestral House held a special programme at Sibpur, Howrah, on 27 September which was attended by about 300 people.
Celebration of the 150th Birth Anniversary of Sister Nivedita
Centres in India:
Advaita Ashrama, Kolkata, conducted a youth convention on 21 August in which 350 people participated. Prizes were distributed to the winners of the cultural competitions the centre had conducted earlier.
Bhopal centre held two talks on Sister Nivedita on 25 and 26 October which were attended altogether by about 1200 people, mostly students.
A Tamil book on Sister Nivedita, jointly published by Chennai Vidyapith and Chennai Math, was released in a special programme held at Chennai Vidyapith on 25 October.
Gadadhar Ashrama conducted a devotees’ convention on 25 September in which 125 devotees took part.
Jamshedpur centre conducted cultural programmes and competitions in three of its schools on 28 October.
On 28 October, Ponnampet centre held a programme comprising bhajans, speeches and screening of a film on Sister Nivedita. Nearly 200 people attended the programme.
Rajkot centre conducted values education programmes at 7 schools in Rajkot which were attended by about 2000 students.
Visakhapatnam centre conducted a written quiz competition on Sister Nivedita in which nearly 87,000 students from 575 schools in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana participated. The final round of the competition was held on 28 October. About 2000 prizes were given away to the winners.
Swamiji’s Ancestral House held a cultural programme on 1 October which was attended by about 500 people. On the centre’s initiative, two programmes were held at Kolkata and Chinsura on 23 and 28 September. In all, 650 people attended the programmes.
Centres outside India:
Florida (USA) centre held lectures, cultural programmes and screening of a film on Sister Nivedita on 22 and 23 October.
News of Branch Centres (in India)
Durga Puja (in image) was celebrated at the following 25 centres: Antpur, Asansol, Barasat, Contai, Cooch Behar, Dhaleswar (under Agartala), Ghatshila, Guwahati, Jalpaiguri, Jamshedpur, Jayrambati, Kailashahar, Kamarpukur, Karimganj, Lucknow, Malda, Medinipur, Mumbai, Patna, Port Blair, Rahara, Shella (under Cherrapunjee), Shillong, Silchar and Varanasi Advaita Ashrama.
Sri Nitish Kumar, Chief Minister of Bihar, attended Durga Puja celebration at Patna centre on 9 October, Mahashtami day.
The High School attached to Vijayawada centre celebrated its golden jubilee on 2 October. Swami Gautamanandaji presided over the programme in which Sri N Chinarajappa, Deputy Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, and others took part. Click here for photos and report.
Chennai Vidyapith distributed new clothes, sweets and fire crackers to 150 orphan and destitute girls on 28 October.
Chandigarh centre conducted two programmes for senior citizens on the subject ‘Leading a purposeful life in old age’ in Panchkula (Haryana) and Chandigarh on 15 and 16 October respectively. A total of about 50 senior citizens participated in the interactive programmes.
The newly set-up X-ray and pathology laboratory facilities at Cooch Behar dispensary were inaugurated on 4 October.
At Coimbatore Mission centre, the year-long platinum jubilee celebration of TAT Kalanilayam Middle School and diamond jubilee celebrations of Maruthi College of Physical Education, Polytechnic College and Institute of Agriculture and Rural Development were inaugurated on 3 October. Besides, the newly constructed buildings for Fitness and Sports Sciences Resource Centre and TAT Kalanilayam Middle School were inaugurated on 3 and 4 October.
Sri Ajay Tamta, Minister of State for Textiles, Government of India, visited Almora Ashrama on 5 October.
A student of Coimbatore Mission centre won the gold medal in Junior Boys category of the State Archery Championship held by Tamil Nadu State Archery Association on 9 and 10 October.
Hyderabad Math held a special lecture programme on 22 October in which about 800 teachers took part.
Khetri centre held a programme on 16 October to celebrate the birthday of Swami Vivekananda’s disciple Raja Ajit Singh of Khetri. About 50 people attended the programme.
Kochi centre distributed 50 saplings and held a talk on 16 October.
Medinipur centre conducted a free medical camp on the premises of a school in a backward area in Paschim Medinipur district, on 2 October. Eleven doctors, including two pediatricians, one gynecologist and one dentist, treated 760 patients.
On the occasion of Navaratri festival, Pala Math held cultural competitions in October. About 140 students from different schools and colleges participated in the competitions.
The following centres conducted free eye camps :
Values Education and Youth Programmes
Haripad Math conducted two values education camps on 28 and 29 September in which 360 young people took part.
On 16 and 17 September, Khetri centre, in collaboration with Delhi centre, conducted a Teachers’ Training programme at Jhunjhunu town on values education. In all, 74 teachers of 38 government schools of Jhunjhunu district took part in the programme.
Ranchi Morabadi centre conducted a training programme on rural development for youths from 16 to 30 October, in which 46 people took part.
Silchar Ashrama conducted two youth conferences on 30 September and 1 October in which 880 students and 104 teachers from 65 schools and colleges participated.
Vadodara centre held a programme on 15 October which was attended by 200 students.
Swachchha Bharat Abhiyan (Clean India Campaign)
Almora centre has taken up cleaning of nearly one kilometer stretch of a public road in Almora every Sunday with the help of local people.
Coimbatore Mission centre conducted, through its different educational institutions, 13 cleaning drives on 3 October in which 746 students cleaned public roads and premises of several government offices.
The third phase of Swachchha Mangaluru, a cleanliness drive of Mangaluru Ashrama, was launched in a programme on 2 October in which about 2000 volunteers took part. A seminar was also held on that day. The centre conducted 32 cleaning drives in different areas of Mangaluru on 9, 16 and 23 October in which about 3000 volunteers participated.
Ranchi Morabadi centre held a special programme on 22 October at Baridhi village in Ranchi district to create awareness about cleanliness. The programme consisted of oath-taking, planting of saplings and a transect walk. Sri Sudarshan Bhagat, Minister of State for Agriculture & Farmers Welfare, Government of India, and several other dignitaries attended the programme.
Vadodara conducted two cleanliness drives in Vadodara and a village in Vadodara district on 2 October. On the same day about 90 sweepers of Vadodara municipality were felicitated.
News of Branch Centres (Outside India)
Durga Puja (in image) was performed in Durban centre, and its sub-centres at Chatsworth and Pietermaritzburg, Mauritius Ashrama and the following 12 centres in Bangladesh: Baliati, Barisal, Chittagong, Comilla, Dhaka, Dinajpur, Faridpur, Habiganj, Jessore, Narayanganj, Rangpur and Sylhet, and also at the Narail sub-centre of Jessore Ashrama. Click here for photos of Durga Puja at Dhaka.
At Dhaka centre, Prime Minister of Bangladesh Ms Sheikh Hasina, Minister of Home Affairs Mr Asaduzzaman Khan, Minister of Health and Family Welfare Mohammed Nasim, Former President Mr H M Ershad, Mayor of Dhaka (South) City Corporation Mr Sayeed Khokon, Inspector General of Police Mr A K M Shahidul Hoque, High Commissioner of India Mr Harsh Vardhan Shringla and several other distinguished persons attended the Durga Puja celebration. On the Ashtami day, nearly 15,000 people witnessed the Kumari Puja and were served cooked Prasad.
The renovated dining-hall at Dhaka centre was inaugurated on 2 October.
We are sorry to announce the passing away of four of our brother-monks.
Swami Abhyasanandaji (Shiven Maharaj) passed away at Seva Pratishthan, Kolkata, on 3 October at 10.35 am. He was 96 and had been suffering from various old -age ailments. Initiated by Swami Virajanandaji Maharaj, he joined the Order in 1950 at Calcutta Students’ Home, which was then located elsewhere in Kolkata and later on shifted to Belgharia. He had Sannyasa from Swami Shankaranandaji Maharaj in 1960. He spent his entire monastic life at his joining centre and was its head for a few months in 1998. Affectionate and kind-hearted by nature, the Swami endeared himself to all who came in contact with him.
Swami Udgithanandaji (Nirmal Maharaj) expired at Arogya Bhavan, Belur Math, on 5 October at 11.40 am. He was 92 and had been suffering from some old-age ailments for the last few years. Initiated by Swami Virajanandaji Maharaj, he joined the Order in 1950 at East Pakistan (now Bangladesh) refugee relief and rehabilitation camp in Assam, organized by Karimganj centre. He had Sannyasa from Swami Shankaranandaji Maharaj in 1959. Besides the above camp, he served at the Math Office in Belur Math and at Dinajpur centre, Ranchi Sanatorium and Seva Pratishthan, Kolkata, as an assistant and for about four decades at Karimganj centre as head. He had been living a retired life at Belur Math for the last three years. Austere in his habits, the Swami was known for his calm demeanour.
Swami Gaurinathanandaji (Virupaksha Maharaj) passed away at Seva Pratishthan, Kolkata, on 30 October at 8 am owing to renal failure. He was 86 and had been suffering from chronic kidney disease, diabetes and hypertension for some years. Initiated by Swami Shankaranandaji Maharaj, he joined the Order in 1954 at Kamarpukur centre and had Sannyasa from Swami Madhavanandaji Maharaj in 1963. Besides his joining centre, he served at Purulia, Tamluk, Ramharipur, Bankura, Kankurgachhi, Dehradun, Lalgarh, Narainpur, Antpur, Khetri and Saradapitha centres. He had been living a retired life for the last five years, mainly at Naora and Halasuru centres. The Swami was amiable by nature.
Swami Nilakanthananda (Vilas), head of Shimla centre, expired on 30 October at about 5 pm owing to a massive heart attack while he was travelling from Kalka t o Shimla by train. He was 59. Initiated by Swami Bhuteshanandaji Maharaj, he joined the Order in 1989 at Belur Math and had Sannyasa from Swami Ranganathanandaji Maharaj in 2000. Besides Belur Math, he served at Varanasi Home of Service, Aalo, Lucknow and Belgharia centres as an assistant and for two years at Shimla centre as head. He was a good speaker and an able administrator. In his untimely death the Order has lost a dynamic and promising member.