Swadhina organised the Peace Day on 2nd October, commemorating the Gandhii Jayanti, What elese could have been more appropriate than coinciding the day with the birthday of the man who is the prime symbol of peace and non-violence.
Peace, Mututal Goodwill and Progress - this was the primary theme of a one-day workshop organised by Swadhina on 2nd of October 2016 at Ghatsila, Jharkhand State. Altogether 43 persons were present on this occasion. As explained being the symbolism of Social Justice, Gandhiji's birthday was a apt opportunity to discuss on the issue. Speaking on this occasion, Smriti Sarkar, President of Swadhina, highlighted the fact that war and violence has direct effects on women. While on one hand women are constantly at a threat of domestic violence, in situations of war and violence, it is the women who suffer the most.
Ms.B.Kachhap, a former Sschool Principal, highlighted the fact that 'progress' is a holistic term that involves political, economical and social responses - and of which, Peace is a prime requisite.
Ms. Subhra Pani, a home maker, spoke on the contribution of Mahatma Gandhi towards world peace.
Ms.Amita Bose felt that peace and progress were inter-dependant on each other and progress can not be totally achieved if there is a lack of peace or lack of mutual goodwill.
Dr.Prabal Sanatani, senior correspondent of Hindustan Times newspaper speaking on the theme said that Peace in individual context is perhaps an easier concept but when we try to put it in the social or national perspective things become difficult. Individually, whenever we are wrong we ask for forgiveness and if there is a mutual understanding, we reach a solution. But in the larger perspective it becomes a huge challenge. However, if we practice the same principle of good will and mutual understanding , peace is possible. He said that if we are asleep, then can be an effort for awakening but if we pretend to be asleep, no amount of effort to awaken or to improve on awarenessn is possible. But for the sake of progress we must carry on the efforts to instill peace and goodwill.
Speaking on this occasion, Prof. Badal Chandra Bhakat, insisted that in situation where there is mutual distrust, violence there cannot be either Peace or Progress. It is not that there should not be any protest against atrocities. Beginning from South Africa, Gandhiji himself has demonstrated how protests can be peaceful. He propagated the ideas of non-violent means of resilience. He explained how Gandhiji had protested against the British government through intelligent, non-violent movements. Prof. Bhakat also said that the real need in India to propagate progress is to strengthen the Panchayati Raj system. But no system can function if we have discrimination amongst ourselves. We must have a system of mutual goodwill intact, for progress to happen.
Ms.Ratna Mukherjee, a school teacher, felt that the feeling peace comes from within - from each individual of the society. If individually we believe in the theory of Peace and begin the process of non-violence, it is possible to build a progessive society on the foundations of peace and mutual trust.
Social worker Sunita Rani Sarkar gave a brief talk on Gandhiji's quest for a corruption free society and his constant efforts to develop a nation on the foundations of non-violence.
Social worker, Prabir Sarkar, said that much of the peace efforts comes form women and a nation that believes in the progress of nation is a truly progressive nation. And for that it is very important that women of the nation are empowered enough. There are many schemes for the benefit of women and we must ensure that the schemes reach women in the remotest regions.
Ms.Ratna Das, Ms.Karmi Kisku, Ms.Soumita Sanatani enthralled the audience with their songs. While the bold recitations of Ms.Nilima Sarkar, Ms. Sabita Banerjee and Ms.Ratna Mukherjee mesmerised all present.
The programs of the day were moderated by Ms.Nilima Sarkar, a high school teacher and a Swadhina Member. The event ended with a symbolic song, all sang together "aguner parashmoni" by Poet Tagore, meaning "cleanse us with thy pure light" !