Champaran Satyagraha: 100 Years – Major Activities

Commemorative Programs

The Samiti had initiated several activities in Champaran as part of the centenary celebrations beginning with a series of programmes in April 2017 which was graced by Union Agriculture Minister Shri Radha Mohan Singh; the former vice-chairperson of GSDS and granddaughter of Mahatma Gandhi, Smt. Tara Gandhi Bhattacharjee, senior Gandhians, academicians, social activists and grassroots workers from April 10-18, 2017 in Motihari.

That was the beginning of the commemoration of the centenary celebrations of the first satyagraha that Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi undertook in the historic land of Champaran in the year 1917, his first victorious non-violent campaign.

In continuation of the commemoration celebration, the Samiti, while marking the finale of the commemorative celebrations of the Champaran Satyagraha, organized a series of programmes in Motihari, Champaran from April 5 to April 17, 2018 onwards. Motihari was the place where Mahatma Gandhi had reached on April 10, 1917.

In view of this, Director GSDS, Shri Dipanker Shri Gyan led the staff of GSDS in Motihari for initiation of several projects. The staff included: Smt. Geeta Shukla, Research Officer; Shri Rajdeep Pathak, Programme Executive; Shri Praveen Dutt Sharma, Editor, Publications; Shri Pankaj Chaubey, Assistant Editor, Publications; Shri Narendra Kumar, Asst Estate Manager, Shri Mahendra Singh Rawat, Shri Yatendra, Singh, Shri Rakesh Sharma, Shri Dharamraj Kumar, Shri Dharampal, Shri Arvind Yadav, Shri Manish Kumar, Shri Deepak Kumar Pandey.

The broad initiatives that were taken in Champaran are as under:

  • Initiation of Sanitation Clubs in Schools in Champaran
  • In pursuance of the Swachh Bharat Initiative, the Samiti in collaboration with Sulabh Social Service Organisation established Sanitation Clubs in various schools in Champaran. A series of workshops were conducted on health and sanitation in these schools.

    One major initiative was the setting up of the Sanitary Napkin Vending Machine and Incinerators (destroyer), in schools and railway station, Motihari to begin with. This was a tribute to the spirit of Ba (Kasturba Gandhi) who had always worked on feminine health issues side by side with Gandhiji who time and again expressed his concern about the health of the mothers and raised issues on sanitation in his different campaigns.

    This effort by the Samiti was also in view of the clarion call given by the Hon'ble Prime Minister of India Shri Narendra Modi on April 10, 2017 when he launched “Swachhagraha”. The Prime Minister also underlined the importance of ‘karyanjali’ or action.

    The Samiti, therefore, undertook several activities towards sensitization campaigns for the young and adolescent girls, and women in maintaining their menstrual hygiene.

    Speaking about this initiative of the Samiti, Director GSDS Shri Dipanker Shri Gyan says: “The ‘School Sanitation Programme’ will be aimed at promoting life skills-based hygiene education which can help to create effective education and hygienic schools by giving children not only knowledge but also attitudes and skills for coping with life”.

    As part of the programme, several initiatives were taken such as workshops, setting up of sanitary napkin vending machines and incinerators, etc.