Mangaluru, May 2, 2017: “After Indian independence, 117 countries became independent and all of them drew inspiration from India’s freedom. But many of these countries later lost their freedom to dictators. Even Pakistan got split and Bangladesh was formed. Soviet Union had 16 languages and each language became a nation. Yugoslavia had 3 languages and became 3 countries. Czechoslovakia had two languages and today they are two countries. India has much more variety, yet we are united because we are all interested in being together. India has survived by sheer din and noise of democracy,” said renowned Gandhian and veteran social reformer S. N. Subba Rao after inaugurating National Integration Camp for Youth (NICY) at Yenepoya University on Tuesday, May 2.
The camp is organized jointly with National Service Scheme (NSS), National Youth Project and the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Government of Karnataka. 350 NSS volunteers, NYP state coordinators, NSS programme officers and students from 19 states of India are participating in the weeklong event, which is being held at Yenepoya University campus at Derlakatte, Mangalore from May 1 to 7, 2017. A contingent of 120 students of Yenepoya University is also participating in the camp.
In his inaugural address, 88-year old S. N. Subba Rao called upon the youth to foster harmony by cultivating mutual acceptance. Elaborating further on the idea of national integration, he said, “Guns cannot keep a country united. To create national integration, we need large hearts. We should accept each other as brothers and sisters. God did not build barriers; it is man who built them.”
He concluded his talk with an interactive session where he encouraged NSS volunteers from different states to shout slogans and national integration messages in the language of their respective states.
Another guest Arun N Pujar, Director, NSS Regional Center, Govt. of India said we cannot achieve national integration without understanding the community at large. “Youth can bridge the gap by reaching out to the people,” he said.
Dr. A M Khan, Registrar – Evaluations, Mangalore University felt that technology has caused a rift in people to people contact. “We are losing our neighbours because of being online all the time. Today’s youth need to be mentored properly,” he said.
Col. Nitteguthu Sharath Bhandary, Veteran & President of All Karnataka Rubber Planter’s Association urged the youth to cultivate the habit of acquiring knowledge through participation.
In his presidential address, Yenepoya Abdulla Kunhi, Chancellor, Yenepoya University observed that the most impressive quality of NSS movement is the spirit of volunteerism that it imbibes in the younger generations. “Volunteerism is the highest form of selfless service. Engaging in voluntary service is a spiritually uplifting experience. It brings out our empathy and makes to see god in humanity,” he said.
Dr. M. Vijayakumar, Vice Chancellor, Yenepoya University welcomed the gathering. Camp souvenir ‘Expressions’ was released on the occasion. Sri S. N. Subba Rao and Col. Nitteguthu Sharath Bhandary were specially felicitated with ceremonial honours.
Dr. Ghulam Jeelani Qadiri, Dean of Yenepoya Medical College and the Organizing Chairman of the Camp proposed the vote of thanks.
Dr. B. H. Shripathi Rao, Dean of Yenepoya Dental College; Dr. Shreekumar Menon, Registrar of Yenepoya University, Sukumaran, Secretary of National Youth Project, Kerala; Ramsingh Parmar, Secretary of National Youth project; organizing secretaries of the camp Anil Hebbar, National Youth Project and Dr. Ashwini S. Shetty, NSS Co-ordinator of Yenepoya University were present on the dais.