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Activities of Ramakrishna Math and Ramakrishna Mission

From April 2006 to March 2007


1. Medical Service
2. Educational Service
3. Work in Rural and Tribal Areas
4. Relief and Rehabilitation Work
5. Women Welfare Programmes
6. Youth Welfare Programmes
7. Mass Contact
8. Spiritual and Cultural Work
9. Celebrations

   I. Medical Service :

1. During the year under review the Mission and Math had the following medical and allied units.

2. Specialised medical treatments : The following special treatments were provided by some of our centres through their hospitals, dispensaries, special programmes, camps, etc.

a. Tuberculosis cases were treated at the 150-bed sanatorium in Ranchi, the TB Clinic attached to Delhi centre as also by our centres at Bhopal, Chennai Math, Dehradun, Kamarpukur, Lucknow, Narainpur, Patna, etc.

b. Leprosy case detection and treatment was done by our centres at Ichapur, Kamarpukur, Lucknow, etc.

c. Maternity and child welfare services were provided by our hospitals in Kolkata (Seva Pratishthan), Lucknow, Thiruvananthapuram and Vrindaban and also by some dispensaries.

d. Psychiatry treatment was provided in our Thiruvananthapuram, Kolkata (Seva Pratishthan), Vrindaban and Lucknow hospitals and also by some dispensaries.

e. Eye treatment was rendered by our centres at Bhopal, Garbeta, Kamarpukur, Patna, Porbandar, Rajkot, Ulsoor, and so on, and at the hospitals in Lucknow, Muzaffarpur, Vrindaban, etc. Besides, many centres have separate eye-department attached to their dispensaries.

f. Neurology department functioned at the hospitals in Itanagar, Kolkata (Seva Pratishthan), Lucknow, Varanasi, etc.

g. Physiotherapy treatment was provided by our centres in Delhi, Itanagar, Kolkata (Seva Pratishthan), Lucknow, Nagpur, etc. The centres at Rajkot and Visakhapatnam had special clinics for providing physiotherapy treatment to cerebral palsied children.

Besides, many centres had special departments for dental surgery, ENT, cardiology, paediatrics, acupressure, acupuncture, etc. Many centres provided ayurvedic treatment also.

3. Medical Camps : 89 eye camps were conducted, in which 6469 patients were operated on for cataract free of charge. Besides these, a considerable number of medical camps for health awareness, dental care, child care, general medicines, etc were organised.

The total expenditure incurred for medical work during 2006-07 was Rs. 61.55 crore.


II. Educational Work

The Math and the Mission centres lived up to their reputation in the field of education. Apart from excellent academic performance, the students won laurels in sports and other extra-curricular activities. The educational work of the twin organizations has been summarized in the following table.

The total expenditure incurred for educational work during 2006-07 was Rs. 111.60 crore.


III.  Work in Rural and Tribal Areas :

Rural and tribal welfare work has come to occupy a prominent place in the list of services rendered by the Math and the Mission. This kind of service is done in three ways:

(a) through our centres located in rural and tribal areas;

(b) through our urban centres which have taken up development projects in rural and tribal areas; and

(c) through our educational and medical institutions in semi-urban areas, where rural people form a significant percentage of the beneficiaries.

Besides, the Headquarters also directly conduct Pallimangal (integrated rural development) activities in selected villages. The Math and the Mission spent a sum of Rs. 18.62 crore for rural and tribal development work, apart from the huge expenditure incurred by the educational and medical institutions located in rural and tribal areas.

The rural and tribal activities may be broadly grouped under the headings : (i) General; (ii) Agricultural; (iii) Educational and Self-reliance training; and (iv) Medical.

i. General : Attempts were made to create awareness amongst villagers regarding sanitation and cleanliness. Drinking water was provided by digging bore wells and tube wells. Construction of pucca houses, low-cost toilets, and so on ensured a healthier living. Religious and moral classes were conducted and cultural functions were arranged.

ii. Agricultural : Free soil-testing was done. Farmers were taught improved methods of cultivation through our institutes like agro-clinics, and were also provided with agricultural inputs and financial help. Projects such as wasteland development, planting of fruit and forest trees, etc were undertaken.

iii. Educational and self-reliance training : Free schools were run for children. They were provided with free board and lodging and aids like stationery, clothing, etc. Adult and non-formal education centres were run. Night schools for labourers and working children evoked good response. Audio-visual shows, farmers’ fairs and the like were held. Self-help groups and training schemes were organized for teaching lathe-turning, carpentry, bee-keeping, pisciculture, dairy and poultry-farming, weaving, incense-stick rolling, etc to enable the rural and tribal folk to achieve self-reliance.

iv. Medical : Mobile dispensaries supplied free medicines to a large number of patients, and organized free diagnostic and eye-operation camps. Besides, preventive and promotive measures were undertaken through health education and immunization schemes / programmes on a regular basis.

The centres in Aalo (Along), Antpur, Chapra, Cherrapunjee, Coimbatore Mission, Ichapur, Jayrambati, Kamarpukur, Kalady, Malliankaranai (Tamil Nadu), Manasadwip, Mysore, Narainpur (Chhattisgarh), Narottam Nagar, Nattarampalli, Ramharipur, Sargachhi, Sarisha, Shivanahalli (Bangalore), Viveknagar (Agartala), Thrissur, etc, directly catered to the needs of rural and tribal folk in a big way, and a number of rural units were run by the centres at Belur (Saradapitha), Contai, Narendrapur, Ranchi (Morabadi), etc. Of these, special mention may be made of the numerous village units started for educating the hill tribes in Meghalaya, various village development programmes conducted by Narendrapur (Kolkata) centre catering the needs for all-round village development, as well as the farming centre in Ranchi, specially meant for Schdeuled Tribes and people belonging to the Scheduled Castes. The tribal development project of our centre at Narainpur has made a significant contribution towards the all-round development of the local tribes. Our educational, medical and cultural activities in Arunachal Pradesh have proved to be very useful and popular.

The centres engaged in the rural welfare activities conducted the following service activities :

A. Medical Units : In the year under review the Math and Mission had the following medical units in rural and tribal areas :

B. Educational Institutions : In the year under review the Math and Mission had the following educational institutions in rural and tribal areas :

Besides, they ran 61 libraries and 15 audio-visual units, all dedicated to the service of rural and tribal people.

C. Pallimangal Activities : The activities under Pallimangal (a pilot project, which was originally initiated in 1980 by the Headquarters) continued in the villages in and around Kamarpukur and Jayrambati in West Bengal. The major service programmes conducted under this project during the year are given below:

(i) Agricultural Development Programmes : (a) Soil analysis was done for 433 soil samples, and agricultural and technical guidance was given to farmers. (b) Under the Seed Production Unit, certified mushroom seeds were produced on large scale during the year. More than 150 species of herbal plants were cultivated at the herbal resource garden in Kamarpukur. It helped and encouraged farmers for cultivation of medicinal herbs. (c) For spreading awareness of the benefits of renewable sources of energy, the use of solar photovoltaic and solar thermal systems was promoted.

(ii) Medical Activities: (a) 14,735 patients were treated by the mobile medical unit. Special medical programmes and camps, and health care and awareness programmes were conducted at Kamarpukur. (b) Under Leprosy Eradication Programme, after an extensive survey and medical examination, 511 persons were given treatment. (c) A programme on Control of Tuberculosis through Community Based Directly Observed Treatment with Short-Course-Therapy (DOTS) under Revised National Tuberculosis Control Programme (RNTCP) continued, under which 17 cases were treated during the year. (d) 656 patients were operated on for cataract under National Blindness Control Programme. (e) Extensive survey and medical examinations were done along with health education campaign under National HIV/ AIDS Control Programme launched during the year. (f) Nutritious diet was provided to children at Kamarpukur under Child Nutrition Programme.

(iii) Educational and Cultural Activities : (a) 18 non-formal education centres and 24 free coaching centres benefited 1405 students. (b) An audio-visual unit screened 31 educative films in 21 villages benefiting about 20,700 villagers. (c) A number of students were given textbooks, uniforms, etc. Scholarships and financial assistance were given to a number of students. (d) Cultural programmes, competitions in sports and games, etc were also organized.

(iv) Training Programmes : 62 poor men and 11 destitute women were trained in apiculture, weaving, jute handicraft, dhoop-making, TV repairing and food-processing projects.

Thus the year witnessed an expansion in the activities, as in previous years, resulting in better utilization of the available infrastructural facilities. The statistics relating to the institutions furnished in this section form part of the figures already mentioned under ‘Medical Service’ and ‘Educational Work’.



IV.  Relief and Rehabilitation Work :

The Mission and Math conducted several relief and rehabilitation operations during the year. The details of the operations are given below.

i) Primary Relief:

The following major items were distributed during the relief operations:

A sum of Rs. 3.56 crore (Rs. 2.64 crore in cash and Rs. 0.92 crore in kind) was spent on primary relief operations to help 5,67,186 people of 1,30,198 families from 2027 villages.

ii) Rehabilitation Work:

A sum of Rs. 30.17 lakh was spent on these rehabilitation projects during the year 2006-07 apart from the expenditure incurred by Batticaloa (Sri Lanka) centre.




V. Women Welfare Programmes :

Both the Mission and the Math have permanent programmes for service to women, the most important of which are mentioned below.

1. Care for pregnant and nursing women through the maternity departments of our hospitals in Kolkata (Seva Pratishthan), Vrindaban, Thiruvananthapuram and also through other hospitals and clinics run by us.

2. Old-age Home for women in Varanasi.

3. Educational service to girls :

(a) A large educational complex exclusively for girls, known as Sarada Vidyalaya Mission centre, in Chennai, offering education to girls from the primary to the higher-secondary level.

(b) High schools for girls run by Chennai Math, Jamshedpur and Sarisha centres.

(c) A higher secondary school for girls in Chengalpattu.

(d) A primary teachers’ training institute in Sarisha.

Apart from the above, there are co-educational schools of different grades under our centres in Aalo (Along), Coimbatore, Chennai (T Nagar), Kalady, Jayrambati, Bhubaneswar, etc. Besides, a Sanskrit co-educational school is functioning at Kalady.


4. Nurses’ Training Institutes attached to five of our hospitals in Kolkata (Seva Pratishthan), Lucknow, Vrindaban, Itanagar and Thiruvananthapuram.

5. Programmes for enhancing women empowerment by forming self-help groups, imparting vocational training and the like for making them self-reliant.



VI.  Youth Welfare Programmes :

Apart from the educational and cultural programmes for students conducted by our educational centres, some of our Mission and Math centres have separate recreational and cultural centres called Balak Sanghas (for children) and Yuvak Sanghas (for youths) in Bangalore, Chennai (Math), Hyderabad, Malda, Mangalore, Mysore, Pune, Ranchi (Morabadi), Salem, Visakhapatnam, and a few other places. In these centres, children are provided supplementary nutrition and guidance in the practice of social, moral and spiritual values, and are also taught the basics of scriptures, chanting, devotional music, etc.



VII.  Mass Contact :

The various activities of the Math and Mission were spread over both in rural and urban areas. The participation of lakhs of people in the annual festivals and celebrations was indicative of the steady growth in the spreading of Ramakrishna-Vivekananda message. The ashramas and temples situated all over the country drew a great number of people throughout the year. The medical institutions provided medical facilities free or at concessional rates to lakhs of poor patients. A considerable number of poor students were provided free board and lodging in our educational institutions. The libraries and reading-rooms attracted a large number of readers. The publication centres brought out subsidized editions of selected books to enable the masses to have access to them.




VIII. Spiritual and Cultural Work :


Both the Math and the Mission centres laid emphasis on the dissemination of the spiritual and cultural ideals of India. Through various types of activity, they tried to give a practical shape to the teachings of Sri Ramakrishna, especially that all religions are true. The centres established real points of contact among people of different faiths through public celebrations, meetings, classes, publications, and so on. During the year, 211 libraries, containing a large number of books and journals, were run. Attached to these libraries, reading-rooms were maintained in many places. Institutes for Sanskrit studies—a college, 3 schools, a Chatushpathi and a Pathashala—were run. At least 14 centres published journals in different languages. The Math centres in Baghbazar (Kolkata), Bhubaneswar, Chennai, Hyderabad, Nagpur, Mayavati, Mysore, Rajkot and Thrissur in particular, have to their credit a considerable number of popular publications. Some of our foreign centres too are publishing valuable books. Besides, programmes like cultural competitions for students, different cultural and value-oriented classes, seminars, etc and projects like Jnanavahini with lectures, educational and religious film shows and exhibitions, guided meditation and personality development classes, book sales, etc are conducted to spread spiritual and cultural ideas, especially in the interior parts of the country, by centres like Belgaum, Chennai Math, Hyderabad, Kadapa, Mysore, Ranchi (Morabadi), Vijayawada, etc.


IX. Celebrations :

Most of the Math and Mission centres observed the days sanctified by the advent of great saints and prophets. Besides, a few centres celebrated some of the popular Hindu festivals and also Christmas Eve. The general features of the celebrations of the birthdays of Sri Ramakrishna, Holy Mother Sri Sarada Devi and Swami Vivekananda were: special worship, homa, chanting from scriptural texts, bhajan and sankirtan, distribution of prasad to the devotees, feeding of the poor in large numbers, and lectures by the sannyasins of the Order and other eminent speakers. Thus the message of Sri Ramakrishna and his direct associates was spread steadily. Many ardent souls came in close touch with the ideals of the Math and Mission.


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