Sunday 1 December 2013

Hope- A world where it should never hurt to be a child



It is a heart-breaking sight-seeing children picking up rags and working, instead of being into school, enjoying their childhood, being loved and cared the way they should be. They are forced into work and a life not worth living just for the sake of surviving.

The question still lingers in my mind.

- Who is responsible for all this?

- Still nobody has even come up with a single answer.

People just debate over whose fault it is while the number of unprivileged children who are the future of India still rises.

As quoted by Mohan Das Karamchand Gandhi-“If we are to teach real peace in this world and if we are to carry real war against war, we shall have to begin with children”

But wait, there is still some humanity left in this selfish and unjustified world.

The History

Hope foundation was setup in 1999 and is a registered Irish charity with its branches worldwide. It has 14 branches in Kolkata itself.


The idea behind setting up of HOPE in Kolkata is a couple tourist had come up to visit India but after witnessing such agony and the miserable condition of children they decided to set it up here. Initially HOPE provided night shelter for the children who spent their day at Howrah. Later on HOPE took over responsibility of funding home for 25 boys who wished to reside in the home with some basic amenities.

What does HOPE do?

There are in-numerous numbers of children who work in the most avoidable situations just to keep their stomachs filled.


Kolkata itself has around 2, 50,000 children who are forced to starve on the streets because they have nowhere to go, no proper guidance and no resources available. They suffer from diseases as they have no protection, they do not have clean water to drink, they don’t have roofs above their heads, they don’t have proper clothes to cover their body from the unforgiving weather circumstances.

HOPE takes initiative in providing the basic amenities and most important EDUCATION because if they are not aware and informed they might not know things that they should know then they become most vulnerable in this cut-throat world.


HOPE has carried out various foundation projects, like

- Child Protection- Many parents who can’t afford to feed their children leave them on the streets. On their destiny whether they survive or die in this who gives a damn world. HOPE reaches out to the kids and provides them with the care and guidance to become a better in this world. The NGO still runs this project and brings back the abandoned children to their care unit.

- Education- HOPE provides a decent education service to the slum and abandoned children. They teach them about awareness, to respect their rights about keeping themselves healthy and clean.

HOPE carries 3 areas of Educational Intervention

- Holistic Education Programme

- Nabadisha non-formal education centre with the co-operation of Kolkata police for slum and street children.

- 5 Education sponsorship projects around 500 children

- Health Care- The main aim of HOPE is to provide health care to slum children who cannot afford to have it.

Traditionally most of the times only the Upper class and middle class can avail health care services but HOPE aims to bring equality giving people chance to survive. It also has an emergency response team which surveys the town 365 days a year providing proper attention to children who would otherwise die without.

- Vocational Training and Income Generation- HOPE not only provides care for the children but for the adolescents even, it is currently running tailoring centres for the women and girls from the streets and slums to make them independent and to live a life with their heads high.

HOPE has proven to be a success in the past 12 years in Kolkata and is still trying to make it better so that the world becomes liveable and equal to all without any barriers.

“Love and Compassion are necessities not luxuries. Without them the humanity cannot survive”

-Dalai Lama


Apurv Joseph


3rd Semester

“ Sobure Mewa Phole ’’

We wait and we wait, after 360 days comes the day...those 5 days when we go mad, people around us be as its their last 5 days.

Bengalis are famous for its festivals, and one of them, just not one of them, the largest is Durga Puja, and very obviously.

Today mahalaya acts as an early calling of durga puja, something which tells us “party starts in just another week”…

When we were even kid mahalaya meant 4am, mahalaya meant all india radio, mahalaya meant Birendra Krishna Bhadra’s voice, good old days, good old memories.
Dida used to say, “ Aj Maa’er chokkhu daan ’’, meant nothing to me back then, actually never understood what she meant. But now when I know what “ Chokkhu daan ’’ means, mahalaya’s importance raised a lot for me.
On the day of mahalaya people reach to different Ghats around the city, mainly Princep and Sova bazaar ghat for performing the ritual of “ Tarpan ’’.


We talk about shoshti’s “kola bou snan ’’
We have heard stories from our seniors about the same.
It is a ritual where we are supposed to rise in the wee hours, take the “ kola bou ” to the nearest water body, Ganges preferably, bathe her, and have fun doing it. I personally like that part. The City looks so beautiful during the Pujo and mainly the early mornings. The fresh air, the smell of wet soil is just amazing.

Mahashthami’s anjali is bengali’s all-time favourite has lost some shine at some point. It is the most romantic moment. Anjali with my beloved meant a lot. Anjali means the best panjabi, the best sari. Anjali is…. ANJALI… if u know at I mean.

Talking about SANDHIPUJA & DHUNUCHI NACH of mahanabami, it is my day of showing my exceptional talent of dancing like I will die in minutes.
The Sandhipuja happens in the first hour of nabami, shifting of baton takes place. Ashtami ends with a high, a literal one while nabami takes over, these days do we even check our time, do we even anticipate this change of baton. Do we even celebrate? No we don’t. Its just partying. Well what else do we want right other than partying, right ?


Mahadashami is a sad day for me. Not only me for all. And then the bhashan. Dancing with the procession, the fireworks, journey to the ganges is of immense fun. Hopefully bhashan has stayed the way it is, or has it? Nowadays it more like the last day to party.

Its about celebrating durga puja, not any 5 days of no work and only play. Its not only about long drives, high heads, loud music, coffee shops, dance floors, dinner at X. All of this can stay but not only this, durga pujo only becomes grand with the bangaliana tag intact. we don’t know how to resurrect the situation, therefore the mathematics of my emotions say the wait is better. The counting of days, or rather the countdown, the shopping, the planning, the kashphul, the smell in the air. And as those 5 days go by we start preparing.. not to work but to start waiting, again.


Aritra Saha


3rd Semester


Being the largest and among the oldest libraries in India , the National Library stands as a symbol of Calcutta’s heritage and Kolkata’s pride .

clip_image001clip_image003The national library not only aims to acquire and conserve all significant national production of printed material but also collects printed material concerning the country no matter where it was published and the acquisition of photographic records of such material that is not available within the country.

The purpose with which the library was formed so that the poor students and the others could use it for studying and collecting information for a longer period of time .

The history of The national library began with the formation of the Calcutta Public Library in 1836. Lord Metcalfe , the then Governor General transferred 4675 from the library of the College Of fort William, Calcutta to the Calcutta Public Library . This and donations from individuals formed the nucleus of the library . This made Calcutta Public Library had a unique position as the first public library in this part of the world .


The Metcalfe Hall.

Such a well organized and efficiently run library was rare even in Europe in the first half of the 19th century. And because of these efforts of the Calcutta Public Library , the present National Library has many extremely rare books and journals on its collection.

The National Library Of India stands as not only a symbol of heritage but also as a symbol for our intellectually rich culture. It houses newspapers which were available since the beginning of the 19th century as well as foreign publication. It not only has an extensive collection of global newspapers and periodicals, it also has an extensive collection of maps from 17th century onwards.

Bengal has, through times been tested by various internal and external onslaughts ,political and even domestic violence have been rampant in this part of the country, heritage has been tampered and also destroyed, few have survived the perils of time , National Library is one such witness to stand its ground ,and with it ,beholds a history of Bengal, preserved in its palatial corridors ,in forms of books ,periodicals , manuscripts and newspapers . The national library which has been one of the pioneer institutions of India much to the pride of Bengal.

It not only boasts of the largest collections of books but also of a guardian of a rich history and culture of India, and the rest of the world.


Changes in governments have always has it in their stride to maintain and guard the heritage structure and special care and funds are allotted to safeguard its interests which primarily is to serve the humanity.It has stood the test of time and in all its capabilities the National Library has been able to successfully preserve the intellectual treasures and as yet the preservation has been remarkable.

The National Library was, is and will always be a Jewel in Kolkata’s Crown.


Ria Singh


3rd Semester