Dr Vinay Lakshmi - RIP

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Pink Panther

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Re: Dr Vinay Lakshmi - RIP

Post13 Mar 2013

bkti-pit wrote:I can draw a parallel between Janki and Mother Teresa but in my eyes Vinay Lakshmi's endeavour was of an entirely different nature.

Parallels or otherwise :

Mother Teresa's mission was essentially palliative care, not a hospital, while Dr Lakshmi's was a local hospital (despite the "Global" name attached). The parallel with DJ that ex-l mentions is to do with fundraising that had substantial amounts that went elsewhere other than what was represented, like the actual charity mission.

As far as I know (little), the accounts of the Global Hospital and donations to it are completely separated from the BKWSU. If GH is mentioned as part of any fundraising effort or explanation of where general donations to the BKs generally go - all the 'good works' they do, that would be wrong.

Many BKs donate directly to the GH fund rather than 'Baba's box' because of this. They prefer their money went to practical real service than getting lost in the quagmire of the huge BK organisation where it may be spent on frivolous gold hats, bogus certificates, badges, unaudited travel costs, or support centre-wassis who do no productive work (only BK Admin, PR and leading classes), have sevadaris and drivers at their call, etc. The hospital, like medical services generally in India, doesn't charge fees and runs on donations. (I went to a Doctor in an affluent suburb of Bombay once, I had conjuctivitis. He gave me a prescription, I asked "How much for the consultation?" , he pointed me to a donation box in the corner).

GH is handily established to treat the large cohort of BKs in the Abu region, many who come from a distance, as well as the services to the locals.

Teresa's mission sought out the destitute and homeless who were extremely sick and dying in the streets who had no-one to ameliorate their suffering. It was not a place where Catholic priests, nuns or bureaucrats went for treatment (- a double-edge to that, it may have been better resourced if they did). I know Calcutta has improved over the years, not sure how much, but it was a real horror in the recent past. And the population is not shrinking.

I was there in the early 1980's, and at night, as stores closed and traffic died, the pavements filled with people laying out thin sheets as beds on the hard asphalt with their belongings. Walking a few kilometres and all the pavements were filled like this. One trip was across the Hooghly river (and the far-from-glistening) Diamond Harbour to what were called 'suburbs' but were really unplanned, tightly packed shanty towns. It seemed to be where the 'lower middle class' and "working poor" people lived - school teachers, clerks, labourers etc. It stank.
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Re: Dr Vinay Lakshmi - RIP

Post13 Mar 2013

Slight correction, Dr Vinay's project was really the Village Outreach Programme rather than Global Hospital. It's worth looking to see how the Global Hospital project has evolved (see link).

It always interested me that, despite finding herself adopting the entire BK package including celibacy, Vinay chose to express her love for women, children and child birth. For me, it was quite a unique expression within the anti-sex, anti-motherhood, anti-family ... leave your kids with your in-laws, BK cult.

The village project was limited to just 10 villages due to the financial constrictions placed upon it whilst the BKs spend frivolously in the way you highlight, Pink.

Like Dany, it still gives me the creeps that in some way it is lending credibility to the Brahma Kumaris (by which I mean the inner circle rather than the following) and promoting them when, in reality, such projects really happened because of the good and wisdom of followers against their instruction or obstruction. If it was up to them, they'd still just be sitting there going, "Destruction, Destruction, Destruction ..." and doing Peace Marches.

Perhaps out of all the compost, some fruit is growing but we know what the Brahma Kumaris built their dung heap on.

The BKs appear to be hiding further in the background of such projects now and are not listen directly as financial sponsors, instead Global Harmony Foundation etc are listed. Same too with Friends of the Global Hospital. I don't know what this signifies. Are followers branching off and away from the rigid core?

I suppose they are evolving a bit like the Freemason where they have their "official" and sanctioned charities which are seen as acceptable (and required) to donated too. This does not surprise me as Ray Bhatt who was also involved in the setting up of the Global Hospital was involved with them and saw the BKs as a bit of female Freemasonic-style organization.
Village Outreach Programme

Key sponsors: Global Harmony Foundation (Switzerland), Hong Kong Indian Womens Association, Sindhi Nari Sabha of London etc.

About the project:

Bi-weekly visits to ten adopted villages by consultant gynaecologist and chief of the village outreach programme Dr Vinay Lakshmi and her team is a feature of the Village Outreach Programme (VOP), an essential part of the hospital services since 1991.

While the health service focuses on mother and child care, malnutrition, skin diseases and tuberculosis, the doctors are consulted for other ailments as well, such as respiratory diseases and gastro-intestinal ailments.

The ten villages forming the VOP circle are Aarna, Chandela, Jaidra-Kyaria, Jawaingaon, Nichalagarh, Oriya, Salgaon, Takiya, Uplagarh and Utteraj.

Patients needing medication or health advice are treated on the spot. Patients requiring indoor treatment are encouraged to travel back to the base hospital with the team.

Nutritional programme

The supplementary nutritional (mid-day snack) programme - a part of the VOP - covers 12 village primary schools. School students are served milk, a healthy snack and fruit in the school premises every day (even on Sundays and holidays) throughout the academic year.

This supplement to the students' daily dietary intake has yielded positive results. Most schools report higher attendance, better concentration and a healthier student population since the nutritional programme was launched.

Sewing programme

Dr Vinay Lakshmi also oversees the training of women in villages Aarna, Chandela and Salgaon, in sewing skills in an effort to make them economically self-reliant. Women participating in the VOP
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Pink Panther

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Re: Dr Vinay Lakshmi - RIP

Post13 Mar 2013

Ah, yes. I see. Dr Lakshmi was the strength behind the outreach program. The hospital itself was begun when ...
In 1989, eminent Mumbai-based head and neck cancer surgeon Dr Ashok Mehta visited the Brahma Kumaris world headquarters in Mount Abu. His positive experience led him to believe that the Brahma Kumaris represented a like-minded group of people he could partner to implement his vision of a model hospital focusing on holistic healthcare.

The project was adopted by Khuba Watumull (seen wearing a black suit in the top photo) and Gulab Watumull of Mumbai and Hawaii (USA) respectively, and named J Watumull Global Hospital & Research Centre, in memory of their late Father.

BK Nirwair, officer-in-charge of the Brahma Kumaris Mount Abu setup, was appointed managing trustee of the hospitals' governing trust, Global Hospital & Research Centre.

Phase 1 of J Watumull Global Hospital & Research Centre was formally commissioned on October 24, 1991.

Since then, the hospital has considerably expanded. Phase 2 including two wards were inaugurated in 1995 and two more ward, an operating theatre complex and administration block followed in 1997.

I note the formal integration of various (what we would call) complimentary therapies along with modern Western orthodox medicine. That would be an interesting basis for serious contributions to research.
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