It is often said that educating a man results in his education alone whereas when a woman is educated, her entire family is educated and benefited. Since woman is the pillar of the family, Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba has always been a champion of women’s education, empowerment and their welfare. The Bhoomi puja for a new girls’ campus was performed on the May 06, 2016 and almost exactly a year later, the campus is ready to start functioning. The June 07, 2017 will go down as a red-lettered day in the annals of history towards this most sacred cause as the first Centre for Human Excellence for Women was inaugurated.
The campus set in a most picturesque location, surrounded by hillocks and valleys along with the elegant and aesthetic architectural design is indeed a feast to eye. The magnificent campus is in fact a gift of pure love and benevolence of Bhagawan. Every building and classroom was bedecked in floral décor awaiting the Lord’s arrival. Bhagawan along with a few chosen guests arrived at the campus situated in Nallakadiranahalli which is about 12 kms from Chikkaballpur at about 10 AM. He was received with the ceremonial Poorna khumbam and Vedic chants even as the Nadaswaram was being rendered to welcome Bhagawan. As He alighted from the car, Bhagawan blessed and consecrated a beautiful marble statue of Goddess Saraswathi that adorned the central foyer of the administrative block. The ceremonial lamp was lit followed by unveiling of a plaque symbolising the inauguration of the campus.
Swami then proceeded to bless the student blocks housing the classrooms and laboratories, inspecting every room and proudly explaining the details to the guests accompanying Him. Bhagawan’s face was gleaming with sheer joy as he moved from one section to the other. As always, Bhagawan acknowledged the hard work and efforts of all the workers and labourers who toiled day and night in the construction of the building and blessed them profusely with tokens of His love and grace.
Thereafter, He arrived at a specially erected marquee wherein close to about 800 devotees and students were seated. The students rendered bhajans followed by soulful songs. Bhagawan along with the guests performed Bhoomi Puja for a new dining hall cum prayer hall with a capacity to seat 400 students, which will be constructed shortly. Even as He proceeded to the dais, Bhagawan blessed all those who were present and shared His happiness on the occasion with many. Once Swami was seated along with the other dignitaries, the formal function began with Invocation by the girl students of the Sri Sathya Sai Prasanthiniketanam Pre- University College who chanted the Bhu Suktam. All dignitaries on the dais were welcomed with floral bouquets.
Dr KP Sai Leela, Chairperson of all the girls campuses under the Sri Sathya Sai Loka Seva Institutions gave the opening remarks. She spoke of Bhagawan’s efforts towards women’s’ education by establishing the first ever Sathya Sai College for Girls at Ananthapur, and later at Jaipur, Bhopal, Dharwad, etc. She reminisced on how the the prayer of one girl student of grade ten resulted in the establishment of the Pre- University College which has now expanded into a first grade degree college and concluded her talk by expressing her gratitude to Bhagawan for such a beautiful campus.
The first student speaker of the morning was Miss Preethi B. She is a student of the Centre for Human Excellence and on Bhagawan’s command will be pursuing Medicine in order to serve in His medicare mission. Preethi spoke of her journey from barely passing her exams while studying in a Kannada medium Government school to a rank holder today and standing first in her class at an English medium PU college. She attributed that this was possible only because of Bhagawan’s love and mercy.
Smt Prema Krishna, wife of Sri SM Krishna – former Minister for External Affairs was the next speaker. She came to Bhagawan as a little girl and has ever since been an ardent devotee. She spoke of how there was nothing in the area when she had come for the Bhoomi pooja a year ago and marvelled at the speed at which the beautiful campus had come up. She also pointed to the unique feature of this institution which was that along with imparting education to students, in the process teachers were also being trained to impart moral values and education which is the need of the hour.
The next student speaker to address the gathering was Miss Nandini, a first-year student of the Centre for Human Excellence. From not knowing anything about Swami before she joined the Prasanthi Balamandira Girls High School in grade 8, today she proudly declared that she does not know anything but Swami! Following her parents’ singular advice for her to simply serve in Bhagawan’s mission, Nandini concluded her talk with a prayer to Swami to bless everybody to be able to practice the oneness of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam.
Major General VPS Bakhuni was the next guest speaker of the day. He is the Commandant, Selection Centre – South Zone, has been awarded the Visisht Seva Award for his services and has been an ardent devotee of Bhagawan for many years. He addressed the students and gave them a six-point formula for success – a). Setting a goal in life, b). Staying inspired and motivated, c). Planning and acting towards the goal, d). Commitment towards the goal, e). Faith in God and in oneself, f). Discrimination between right and wrong. Above all he stated that success would be a life-long companion to any sincere student of the Sathya Sai institutions!
The next dignitary to address the gathering was Smt Dr Tejaswini AnanthKumar, a multi-faceted personality. An engineer by education, scientist by profession, activist and social entrepreneur, she is the wife of Sri Ananth Kumar, Member of Parliament from Karnataka. She is also the founder of Adamya Chetana, an organisation which works towards providing Anna (food), Akshara (education) and Arogya (health) to impoverished children and families. She began her talk by stating that she was struck by the alumni of the Sathya Sai educational institutions who are today standing as pillars of the organisation. She brought to fore the fact that in a residential institution such as this, teaching was not restricted to a few hours from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. but instead will be a continuous process beginning right from early in the morning with prayers, yoga, etc until they retire for the night. She expressed her desire to visit each of the established campuses in every district and extended her help in any seva she could render towards this noble cause.
Sri BN Narasimha Murthy, Chief Mentor of the Sri Sathya Sai Loka Seva institutions took to the dais next. He began his talk by quoting Bhagawan’s answer to a question on how to end all problems and suffering in today’s world. Bhagawan’s answer was that imparting the right kind of knowledge to every child is the only solution to end all problems. He spoke of how the journey began in 2011, three months after Bhagawan left His mortal coil, when he was directed by Swami to establish a new school in Gulbarga district. In the following five years – 10 new campuses have been established of which five are for girls students. And all of this is possible only because of the continued presence of Bhagawan with us in the subtle form. He also described Bhagawan’s itinerary of the past week wherein the foundation of a Pre – University College for girls was performed at Hyderabad followed by laying Foundation for Sri Sathya Sai University at Gulbarga, Inauguration of 5,000 seater Prayer hall at Bijapur, and the inauguration of a new Girls School at Gadag. He declared that 100 years from now, the glory of Bhagawan will continue to be written as the unique phenomenon of the subtle form will be an unparalleled one in history of mankind. However if we as contemporaries of Bhagawan can understand and be a part of this sacred mission, we can redeem ourselves and emancipate our lives.
Bhagawan then delivered His Divine Message.
Arati was offered to Swami, followed by Prasadam distribution to everybody.