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  project name ~ Support for Gandhi Katha - Communal Harmony in Orissa (Dhanada M)

category ~ Community Empowerment




  Project Name


Support for Gandhi Katha - Communal Harmony in Orissa (Dhanada M)



AID Chennai



Community Empowerment







  Budget Approved


$ 1000


  Year Approved







  Chapter Coordinators


Harpreet Bajwa


New York









This amount goes towards organising Gandhi Katha by by Odisha Shanti O Sadbhabana Abhiyan (OSSA) lead Narayan Desai along with different Gandhian and Sarvodaya groups and likeminded organizations in Bhubaneshwar, Orissa.

Orissa, among other parts of India, has recently gone through very serious communal riots in which the christian community were among the major victims and for the first time the organizers of the mayhem were able get dalits to inflict damage on adivasis. In order to counter this, a number of organizations have come together to arrange first of all a pad yatra (dec 2008) and a Gandhi Katha which will
energize the communities and hopefully drive out the hateful sentiments that have been allowed to take root and have led to violence. Dr. Dhanada Kanta Mishra, who is one of our SAATHIS, and who has worked with AID for the past ten years (and was at one time responsible for setting up AID in Australia) is one of the leaders of the organizations which include several Gandhian and Sarvodaya groups. They have already organized a group ot 200 young folks to spread the word and the plans for the Ganndhi Katha can be accessed in great detail if so desired. (Srini, could you please provide a link). The highlight of the Katha will be
presentation of Gandhian ideas and ideals by Sri Narayan Desai (son of Mahadev Desai who was for many years a secretary of Gandhiji) on the evenings of March 5th to 9th 2009. All the active civil societies of
Odisha are being approached so as to get young and old to participate and even to contribute monetarily towards the program. Some AID volunteers are also sending funds provately in support of the Katha. The total expense is around 4.5 lakhs and AID is providing some 2000 dollars as per the resolutions of the eb/bod and the College Park chapter.





This activity is in continuation to the peace efforts held in dec, 08 in Orissa. In terms of achievement, likelihood of violence was averted in 08 around christmas time. Some highlights on Gandhi Katha and why Narayan Desai - Gandhi Katha, written by Narayan Desai, son of Mahatma Gandhi''s personal secretary Mahadev Desai. Gandhi Katha brings deep scholarship about the life, thought and times of Gandhi as is evident from his four-volume biography of Gandhiji - ''Maru Jivan EjMari Vani'' More than that, he brings to his audiences his abiding faith in Gandhi. Desai''s Gandhi Katha is an act of atonement and satyagraha.





1) Want to make this a rallying point for all secular forces in the state and demonstrate to communal forces that the state will not stand for their nefarious designs. 2) With elections coming up, there is a lot of scope and chance for disturbances leading up to elections. Peace and harmony activities such as this will likely prevent such an occurence.



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