Miss Manasvi Noel- Miss India Canada


Aug 22 2015 441

Manasvi Noel was crowned Miss India Canada on August 15, 2015 by Priety Zinta in Toronto, Canada. She has also been recognized in the A-list as one of the Top 55, Most Eminent Indo Canadians by Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada. She shared the list with the Defense Minister of Canada and many reputable personalities of Canada.

Manasvi considers herself to be a strong humanitarian and a feminist. Her aim is to work for the progress and benefit of the underprivileged, especially women. Her main focus has always been to empower women through equal opportunities, strength and confidence.

Manasvi Noel also aims to spread Mental Health Awareness. She is working with the Love Heals Organization, as an ambassador in Mumbai to erase the stigma on Depression and Anxiety. She also recently wrote a testimonial for the Live, Love, Laugh Foundation, a mental health initiative by Deepika Padukone. Currently she professionally performs and teaches fusion belly dance. She aims to promote acceptance, confidence and empowerment in women of all ages and sizes.

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India’s Metro man


A legend hangs up his boots On the last M onth . Finally, Elattuvalapil Sreedharan has been allowed to retire, at the age of 79. A man who built the Calcutta Metro, Konkan Railway and the Delhi Metro. But he is best remembered for re-building in just 46 days the Pamban bridge which in 1963 was blown away by a cyclone into the sea.

Here is a man who is honest to core, brooked no nonsense and set an example for others. A true leader who walked his talk. He truly deserves the Bharat Ratna. Now he is going to Kerala to Fulfill the dreams of Malayalis “The Kochin Metro ”

India has much gratitude for this great engineer. He is known as the The “metro man of India”. He is quite a sensational project manager, who almost always gets the project completed on time or before schedule, he fought all the delays caused by bureaucratic red tape, corruption and lack of funds.
Sreedharan’s willpower has moved mountains. He is not just a dreamer but also a builder, but most of all one who has dedicated his achievements to every Indian. He stands out as a legend in the Indian Engineering history. His major projects being the Delhi Metro and the Konkan Railways.

This 75+ year-old Managing Director of the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation only desires the progress of his country. He wanted Delhi to have a world-class metro rail project to change the meaning of urban transport in India. And he did it.

The Konkan Railway project came to him in his retirement. It was a challenging task—-760 km of rail tracks from Mumbai to Kochi through the rugged hills of the Western Ghats. This project was found as not feasible by the British engineers in the pre-independace era. But for Sreedharan nothing was impossible.

As usual the Environmentalists protested, politicians said it shall not be done and the project ran short of money. But Sreedharan raised public bonds to finance it, taking everyone ahead.

Kiran Bedi explains why Sreedharan is worthy of the title: “He is not in his 40s or 50s, but he is in his 70s, a time when we normally retire. Sreedharan has given the best metro concept for the railway of the country with integrity, vision, with commitment and with remarkable professional skills. There is no other person better than him in this category.”

Sreedharan insists he does not have any special skills to get the best out of people. “I always found that people cooperate if you work for a good cause,” he says.

Sreedharan studied in an ordinary school & college and later on took his civil engineering degree from a govt engineering college. But he went on to become the boss for hundreds of IIM, IIT graduates!

People still wonder what really makes him tick at 80 while a young man at his 20’s struggle to begin his day at 6 or 7 in the morning. Er. Sreedharan day starts at 4 am, followed by a series of meditation rounds of Bhagwad Gita.

He reaches office at 9:30 am and gets straight to work. In the evening, he usually takes a long walk with his wife Radha and allocates time to his family of four children. He used to setup reverse clocks to show impending deadlines to his project members during Delhi Metro construction phase. The message of the Gita: To act, without desire for the fruits of the action gave him the courage to act.

A plate placed in his Kerala office read as: ‘Whatever to be done, I do. But in reality I do not do anything’.

India says thank you sir.
Government of India may or may not award him the Bharat Ratna. But for the countless millions that have travelled on the Pamban bridge, Kolkata Metro, Konkan Railways & Delhi Metro and for the knowledgeable public he is already a Bharat Ratna – a real gem of the rarest variety.

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Dardionu Rahat Fund- Helps 6 lakh poor patients

Starting with a small donation of Rs 10, this man has collected over Rs 10 crores to help 6 lakh patients who cannot afford to pay for their medical treatment. Read the story of Naginbhai Shah, an 86-year-old man who still works with the dedication of a 20-year-old to bring relief and hope to the lives of thousands in Ahmedabad. “Everyone lives. But to live while doing something for other people is what matters the most. I get complete satisfaction, loads of blessings and a lot of happiness. This is my meditation,” says 86-year-old Naginbhai Shah about his work.
Naginbhai is the founder of Dardionu Rahat Fund, an organization based in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. He has taken up the responsibility of helping patients who cannot afford medical treatment in hospitals – those who have no money to pay for their medicines, check-ups, surgeries, etc.
The Fund was born in 1964 with a small donation of Rs. 10 and, since then, Naginbhai and his group of volunteers have collected over Rs. 10 crores! They have helped with the treatment of more than 6 lakh patients.
“My son was about three years old when he fell sick and had to be admitted to the hospital. I was a middle class man back then and was searching for a job. I didn’t have the money required for his treatment,” recalls Naginbhai about the time when he first became motivated to do something for the underprivileged.
He had his asthmatic son admitted to the hospital for treatment and went to an old friend to borrow some money. On returning with a sum of Rs. 25, Naginbhai encountered a woman who had come from a nearby village. She was there with her eight year old son and was weeping when Naginbhai met her.
“I asked her why she was crying. After some hesitation she told me that her child needed an operation and the doctor had informed her that the total expenditure would be Rs. 25. She had come with only Rs. 10 from her village. And now, she was left with just Rs. 6. I don’t know what came over me but without thinking for a second I immediately gave her the Rs. 25 that I had borrowed,” he says.
Naginbhai had to go out and borrow some money for his son once again but he was happy that the child he helped recovered after the operation. “My son recovered too. And after some time I got a job as well. After that, I started believing that my job and my son’s health were all the result of the blessings of that woman,” he adds.
It was sometime around then that an idea began to take shape within him. “What if I came to the hospital for half an hour each day and helped one or two people with whatever money I could arrange?” he thought. The year was 1964. Naginbhai discussed the idea with some friends. He was amazed when he asked if they would be willing to help with Rs. 10 – they gave him Rs. 51 instead. “I was surprised. I was asking for small amounts and people were giving a lot more,” says Naginbhai.
And that’s how it all started. Naginbhai would regularly ride his bicycle to the hospital near his home, identify the people who needed help and take care of all their medical expenses with the money he had collected from his friends.
Today, after about half a decade, this generous man is still dedicated to his service. He has a team of five volunteers and they go out every evening at 5 pm to Sheth V. S. General Hospital, Jivraj Mehta Hospital, and some other hospitals in Ahmedabad. In the general wards of these hospitals, they move from one bed to another, talking to the patients there. They chat with them to find out where they are from, their professions, how much money they make, etc.
In this manner, they are able to identify those who need their help the most.
We ‘adopt’ these people and help them with everything they need – be it an MRI, a CT Scan, some medicines, an operation, or anything else. But we make sure that the patient does not go home untreated.” The small team raises money by speaking to people across the city – friends, acquaintances, family, strangers – anyone who can help them with funds. “Sometimes, when we reach the hospital, we find the doctors, staff and some patients waiting for us. The doctors ask those who cannot afford treatment to wait till we come,” says Naginbhai.
“We know what we do is just a drop in the ocean. We cannot go out and help every poor person who cannot pay his/her medical bills. But we have decided that whoever we help, we will help completely and won’t leave that person’s treatment half way. The money involved could be Rs. 10,000 or Rs. 50,000, or more. But once we tell a person we will help, we don’t back out,” he adds.
Naginbhai lives with his son who is working in Ahmedabad. He is extremely frugal with his expenses.
His team works with him for free and there are three trustees who help him take care of the finances of the Fund.
“My family does not support me a lot. But I have stopped expecting anything from them. The people support me. Donors send in money blindly. Last year, I collected Rs. 1.55 crores and spent Rs 1.48 crores on the patients. No money is spent on administration.”
His team also provides patients with fruits, hearing aids, artificial limbs, etc. It is mostly by word of mouth that donors reach Naginbhai. One such donor is Suresh Ruparel. He’s been associated with Naginbhai for the last five years.

“Once I visited a hospital and asked if I could donate money for someone and how I could find a genuine case. The hospital staff told me about Naginbhai. Actually, my mother died in that hospital and I could not reach in time. That’s why I really wanted to help someone there. Naginbhai maintains a very good relationship with all regular donors. I keep aside a portion of my salary for him every month,” he says.
Naginbhai sure has the blessings of the woman he first helped with Rs. 25. And many more now. We wish this 86-year-old a long life and many more years of dedicated service.
By Mahendra Galani

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Serving Humanity


Arashdeep Kaur reaches out to the needy by organising free langars outside PGI.

They say charity begins at home. And living up to it is Arashdeep Kaur, who is pursuing a master’s degree in Social Work from the Centre for Social Work,of a Punjab University. Following in the footsteps of Padma Shri awardee Bhagat Puran Singh, founder of All India Pingalwara Charitable Society Arashdeep believes in ‘serving humanity’.

In-charge of the NGO Udham Emergency Blood Donation and Welfare Association, this girl has taken it upon herself to reach out to the needy by organising langars outside PGI. The NGO also helps raise awareness among University students about the importance of blood donation camps. She talks about it and more.

Motivational factor

One often wonders what inspires youngsters. Do they seek motivation from some pioneers or is it the values ingrained in them? Arashdeep says it is a mixture of both. She proudly states, “Bhagat Puran Singh, founder of Pingalwara in Amritsar — a house that tends to the destitute has always been a foundation of inspiration.”

Feathers In the cap

In-charge of PU-registered NGO Udham Emergency Blood Donation and Welfare Association, Arashdeep shares that the NGO, “Organisers drive to boost blood donation. The collections are sent to PGI, Fortis Hospital, Max Hospital, among others.”

Always upfront about her willingness to serve the society’, she raises funds for the needy’. After collection of enough funds, langar is held outside PGI. “Hordes of people satiate their appetite and go home with wide smiles, which gives me much satisfaction,” she says with a glint in her eyes.

Apart from mading contributions for the betterment of society through social work, she is also a passionate theatre artist. “I have been securing top positions in the Youth Festivals for my performances. In 2014, I waas awarded the second positioon for a Punjabi play,” she says.

Taking pride in her being an all-rounder, Arashdeep informs, “I am a district-level Kho Kho champion as well.”

Flipside of being an achiever

Arashdeep claims that social work gratifies her like nothing else. “There can never be a flipside to being a social worker. Extending a helping hand to the society is the most exhilarating experience ever,” she smiles.

Words of wisdom

“Serves the society selflessly and bring a smile to someone’s face is my mantra.” she smiles.

By  Manika AHUJA

The Tribune LIFE+STYLE on 24 Feburary2016

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Profile and Interviews-Dr. Monica Singh-Professional Social Workers

Dr. Monica Singh, assistant professor with the centre for Social Work, Punjab University is a popular Social Worker, friend, and guide to the students of Social Work at the Punjab University. Dr. Monica Singh is pursuing D.Litt with the university of Bombay after her Ph.D. she completed her Master in social work from the university of Pune and Masters in Sociology from IGNOU. UGC NET cleared, she has completed B.ED also. Dr. Monica Singh has also taken certificates courses of IGNOU like Human Rights, HIV and Family Education and Guidance and counseling. She represents the center of Social Work, Punjab University on several committees and panels of the university, local Administration and various Govt. agencies.
( mona13mch@gmail.com )

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Lalita- A role model for Kullu women

Lalita- A role model for Kullu women.
Position Title : President
H P Mahila Kalyan Mandal
Lalita the President of our organization Himachal Pradesh Mahila Kalyan Mandal was a girl born to a Tehsildar of the British times . Lalita is the president of the HP Mahila Kalyan Mandal, Kullu, HP. She is a role model for all other women who have been the home makers and have never been able to make their life outside the walls of their houses . Over two hundred Mahilla Mandals of District Kullu are associated as members of the HP Mahil Kalyan Mandal. She has been elected as a Zile Parishad member from Neuli ward of district Kullu and has contributed in that capacity also,to the society . Lalita lost her father at a tender age of 4yrs and was brought up by her mother who became a widow at the age of 21yrs . Her mother worked very hard single handedly to raise her two children . She grew up in a very conservative background and was able to attend regular school till the higher secondary level . She was allowed to finish her graduation only as a private candidate . She completed her BSC as a private student .
She was married in a traditional household of a small village of Seaubagh near Kullu. Her mother in law was a very strong personality and under her domination she very quietly and submissively made her place in the house fulfilling her role very diligently. She later in her life got this opportunity of being a part of HP Mahila Kalyan Mandal . She is very quietly and effectively has been able to contribute in running the activities of the organization which were initiated by Shimati Chander Abha. New programmes under her kept evolving and today HPMKM is working for the welfare of women, children and disabled section of our society .

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