Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Chakma youths undertake social work in Delhi

By Paritosh Chakma

It was a bright sunny day on Sunday, 28 March 2010. The place was at Ashok Buddha Vihar near famous Rajghat of New Delhi. When most people in Delhi generally sleep or prefer to sit cozily at home on this holiday at 8 AM, 40 Chakma young men and women were seen working, cheerfully, at the Buddhist temple. They came from far and wide from the NCR region, some after traveling for more than an hour by bus, some took the metro and some came by auto. As for me, I took the metro which is more comfortable and then a short Rs 5-bus ride to reach the Buddhist temple.

Indeed, even for the Chakma community in Delhi it was a rare sight.

They were conducting a social work to clean the Buddhist Temple premises and helping at construction work ahead of the Bizu festival scheduled on 13 April 2010. The Bizu Organizing Committee, Delhi – spearheaded by three social organizations namely, Mizoram Chakma Development Forum (MCDF), Arunachal Pradesh Chakma Students Union (APCSU) and Chakma Welfare Society - undertook this social work mission.

The zeal and dedication of these young men and women were evident in their faces and the jokes which they cracked as they passed on the heavy stone slabs from one hand to the other in a long line.

The young women helped in sweeping the floor, carry the luggage from one room to another and prepared a delicious meal for the entire group.

The social work ended with the delicious lunch. While the lunch was sponsored by the Chakma Buddhist Society (CBS) that is responsible for management of the Ashok Buddha Vihar, the Mizoram Chakma Development Forum sponsored the refreshment (pepsi) provided during the small break periods.

As several tasks remained incomplete, the Bizu Organizing Committee, Delhi resolved to undertake another similar social work to clean the Ashok Buddha Vihar, Rajghat on the coming Sunday i.e. 4th April 2010.

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