Monday, January 2, 2012

Dharna and Thane

Inmates of Aurobindo Ashram observe dharna
Puducherry | Sunday, Jan 1 2012 IST

About 50 inmates of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram here today observed a dharna at the back gate of the Ashram. The agitation was to condemn the Ashram management for its alleged protection of an American national, an inmate even after the reported cancellation of his visa. According to a statement issued by the agitators, Peter Heehs, an American national, who is an inmate at the Ashram, had written a book on the Life of Aurobindo in which he allegedly defamed the philosopher. Following protests from the inmates, the release of the book was banned. Heehs s visa was cancelled and he was reportedly asked to leave the country. However, the Ashram trust and others allowed him to stay at the Ashram. Protesting against this action of the Ashram management, the inmates resorted to the agitation. UNI PAB AKM AE SB1534 -- (UNI) -- 01MS19.xml

Cyclone Thane hits Auroville causing total devastation
At the Auroville beach communities, the situation was judged worse than the 2004 tsunami, with high waves compounding the damage caused by falling trees. The Auroville farms suffered heavily, with one farmer complaining that 40 years of work has gone with uprooted fruit trees and crops being severely damaged. In the Auroville forests, more than 70% of the trees have fallen. The commercial units suffered as well. The office of Upasana suffered a direct hit from a falling tree, while the office of Auromodèle Atelier was narrowly saved with the tree falling in front of its entrance. In the villages around Auroville, the damage is no less. The landscape which Auroville has been at great pains to build over the last 40 years has been disfigured and mutilated...

Assessments of the damage start coming in. At a first rough estimate, the immediate emergency relief would need Rs 4-5 crores (approximately US $ 1 million). The estimates for long-term rehabilitation and restoration will run into a multitude of that. The detailed assessment will be undertaken after the emergency phase is over. The Auroville community asks its friends and well-wishers for financial help which is most urgent. Please make a donation for Auroville Cyclone Relief. For more information you can contact
Checks mentioning Auroville Cyclone Relief can be sent to Auroville Unity Fund, Town Hall, Auroville 605101, Tamil Nadu, India. Bank transfers from within India can be made to State Bank of India Auroville Township, IFS Code SBIN0003160, account name Auroville Unity Fund, account number 10237876031, reference Auroville Cyclone Relief. Bank transfer from abroad can be made to State Bank of India Auroville Township, Branch Code 03160, Swift Code SBININBB474, account Auroville Unity Fund, account number 10237876508 reference Auroville Cyclone Relief.

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