20th ANNIVERSARY or 21st JNANA YAJNA
Students entering the Auditorium
Yogini Rummun invoking the blessings of the Lord
Opening Devotional Dance by Presidency Girls
The 21st Jnana Yajna or Finals at the Auditorium on 23rd June had some unique features: the distinguished presence of our Prime Minister as Chief Guest,
Audience with guests of Honour: (from R to L) Yogini &Yogi Rummun, the Prime Minister,
the Min. of Education & the Ag. High Com. of India
and the presentation to him of a photo-souvenir of his illustrious father visiting our Hinduism Exhibition in 1980; the Sir Kher Jagatsing Memorial Prize awarded to adult winners of an essay competition, the Commemorative Shields given as souvenir to all the 30 participating Colleges, and the book token presented to each of the 200 participants in addition to the usual prizes and trophies. (Earlier a beautiful exhibition was held at Curepipe depicting our 20 years' activities in schools).
Exhibition at Municipality Hall, Curepipe. Opening by Late Gian Nath, Minister of Culture
Some of the numerous visitors
Many other personalities from the social and educational world attended the function , like Hon J. B. David, Minister of Education, Shri V. Gopinathan Ag. High Commissioner of India, Hon S. Dayal, Hon. L. Bundhoo, Mr P. Burton, Director of the PSSA, Mr P. Hurrynag Ag. Director of the MGI, Mr M. Ramdonee President of the Arya Sabha, Mr D. Toolsee President of the Sanatan Dharma Mandir Parishad, Mr D. Beeharry President of the Hindi Speaking Union, Pt. Ghura, representatives of other organizations, Rectors and teachers of various colleges, and other adult well-wishers.
The programme consisted of recitations from the Gita and the Ramayana as well as elocution contests on the theme of Hindu Unity in diversity.
The preliminaries had already been held at Curepipe and Calebasses in June before packed audiences and the level was higher than before.
Audience during Preliminaries at Calebasses
Preliminaries at Curepipe. Ramayana Chanting by Mauritius Girls
One can imagine the enthusiasm and expectations prevailing in the crowded auditorium. In between were Indian dance interludes tastefully executed by Presidency Girls.
Gita Recitation by students of St. Joseph's
The Gita recitation was won by St. Joseph’s followed by S. Jugdambi SSS;
Gita recitation by students of S.Jugdambi SSS
for the Ramayana Chanting Junior, the trophy went to Lady Sushil SSS with Hindu Girls as 2nd;
Ramayana Chanting (Jr) by students of Lady Sushil SSS
Ramayana Chanting (Jr) by students of Hindu Girls
while in the Ramayana Chanting Senior St. Joseph’s and Presidency were both ex-aequo.
Ramayana Chanting by Presidency Students
Ramayana Chanting (Sr) by students of St. Joseph's
The Elocution Contests were won by Sharda Seekun of St. Bartholomew’s followed by Dya Ghose of M. Curé (English Junior); Priya Baligadoo of D. Ramphul followed by Prakash Puchooa of Royal Cpe (English Senior); and D. Neermul of R. Prayag SSS followed by Vibha Dootun of Presidency (Hindi Senior).
In his speech the Prime Minister praised Yogi Rummun for his selfless dedication for the progress of Hinduism, paid tribute to late Kher Jagatsing for supporting him, and expressed satisfaction at the many activities of the Movement resulting in the disciplined and progressive attitude of our youth. The Minister of Education welcomed Yogi Rummun’s initiative and efforts in promoting Hinduism in our schools, and dwelt on Government policy to encourage the teaching of all cultures and religions to build a better Mauritius. The Ag. High Commissioner of India expressed appreciation of Yogi Rummun’s work in promoting Hinduism to youths in their formative years and pledged continued support to the Movement. Yogi Rummun dwelt on the long way travelled and the new orientation needed by the Movement to face the challenge of the next millennium.
The function then ended with the long-awaited prize distribution. In short it was a day when we all felt proud of being Hindus and rishi-santaans.
Some of the Prize Winners with the Ag. Indian High Com.