Gandhi Study Circle, JDMC

Dr. Saumya Gupta
Dr. Jayanti Sahoo
Dr.  Ruchi Shree

In a world undergoing massive change with conflicts of numerous kinds, Gandhian values and ideas offer alternative, culturally rooted and inclusive solutions. This has never been truer than for our cotemporary times. In out attempt to translate Gandhian values into practice, the Gandhi Study Circle JDMC works through three nodes of activities viz. [i] a Certificate Course in Peace and Conflict Studies [ii] a social service outreach through the Right to Food programme for non privileged students, and [iii] promoting Gandhian values by organizing events around Mahatma Gandhi’s life and philosophy viz. events on Gandhi Jayanti, Martyrs Day, promotion of khadi and handloom, film shows and visits to Gandhian sites. 

In the academic year 2015-16, for the Certificate Course on Peace and Conflict Studies: A Gandhian Alternative, Gandhi Study Circle, JDMC organized an International Conference on Peace and Conflict Resolution, on 4th November 2015. Dr. Annika Malmsten Saltin Head, Department of Languages, Literature and Intercultural Studies, Karlstad University, Sweden and Dr. Ashild Kolas, from the Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO), Norway presented their views on international and interpersonal conflict and had a lively interaction with students and faculty.

The Gandhi Study Circle JDMC got a grant from the Gandhi Bhawan to hold a Seminar and Photography Competition on the theme “Living Together: Respect vs. Tolerance”, on 24th February 2016. Two noted scholars Prof. Apoorvanand and Dr. Dilip Simeon illuminated the students on the topic.

The GSC-JDMC also held a Series of Talks and Presentations that underlined the continued relevance of Gandhi’s moral and political philosophy. The following distinguished scholars enriched us with their lectures and interactive sessions:

  • ‘Gandhi: An Introduction’ by Dr. Anil Dutta Mishra, Director, National Gandhi Museum and Library, New Delhi, 19th August, 2015,
  • ‘Peace and conflict: An Introduction’ by Dr. Uttam Kumar Sinha, Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses’, New Delhi, 26th September 2015
  • ‘Gandhi and the Communal Question’ by Dr. Satish Kumar Jha,  Aryabhatta College, University of Delhi, 14th October 2015
  • ‘Gandhi in Our Times: Navigating Contradictions, Understanding Relevance’ Mohd. Zubair Ahmad, JDM College, University of Delhi, 20th February 2016

On Gandhi Jayanti, the GSC organized a lecture and an intra-college debate competition in the premise of the college library. On this occasion, Prof. Aditya Nigam delivered a lecture on ‘Gandhi, Technology and Modernity’. More than ten teams participated and spoke on the topic ‘Gandhi vs Ambedkar.’ The Martrys Day was observed through the screening of the film Hey Ram, and the students of the GSC were asked to review the film. In SYMPHONY 2016, to promote artisanal craft and handloom work, the GSC collaborated with Ruaab-SEWA to put a stall for its products named Loom Mool known for ethnic fashion. The stall did brisk sales and the initiative was much appreciated by faculty and students. During the mid semester break, the GSC students are scheduled to visit the Gandhi Smriti Darshan Samiti, at Rajghat.

The ‘Right to Food’ programme is a unique social service outreach initiative of the GSC-JDMC since its inception. The GSC-JDMC has collaboration with MCKS- Food for Hungry Foundation, for this initiative, through which needy students are provided one free meal a day to take care of their nutritional requirements. In the year 2015-16, 17 visually handicapped students associated with the Equal Opportunities Cell and 5 students from the Sports Departments were supported through this programme.