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Jan 25, 2004 :: Gandhi Niketan Ashram, Kallupatti

Read this inspiring profile of Gandhi Niketan Ashram, an institution founded in 1940 by G Venkatachalapathy, a disciple of Gandhi. Its 42 acres in Kallupatti, in Madurai district of Tamil Nadu has a school run by Dr Paulraj. The school throbs with energy of 3,500 students, boys and girls. 

Chirping students arrive at 7.30 am, an hour before classes begin. Then begins a massive daily cleaning exercise of the campus. That is followed by watering plants and farm maintenance jobs. There are no servants here. The main teachings are dignity of labour, honesty and commitment to rural India. Quite a few have gone on to do medical and engineering courses but several have dedicated themselves to working with the Ashram. No fee is ever collected. The Ashram generates Rs 2 crores from its own produce but also gets generous funding by government agencies. In return the Ashram is involved in extension work to combat rural poverty. Full report


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