Sixth year in the row, in the stewardship of Shri Ashutosh Maharaj ji-head and founder of DJJS, the organization under its Gender Equality Program-Santulan, continued to celebrate Lohri for the cause of creating value for Girl Child across the nation through series of awareness and sensitization programs against female feticide. This year, the celebration resumed for a while in the form of 12 days campaign "Kanya Bacho Abhiyan" from 13th January 2016 i.e. Lohri to 24th January 2016, commemorated as National Girl Child Day nationwide.
Since its conception, the festival of Lohri has been celebrated at the birth of son in the family. Not just getting deprived of celebrations and warm welcome in family, girl child also survives discrimination, feticide and other gender-based crimes. Statistics say that since 1991, more than 80% of districts in India have shown a reducing sex ratio. Ironically it is happening in the country where people worship girls on festivals considering them incarnations of goddess, talk of women's respect and strive hard to be liberal in thoughts. Paying heed to this paradox in society, DJJS has reivnevted the festival of Lohri as Girl child Lohri and many other girl child festivals and days dedicated to celebration of birth of girl child.
The campaign aimed at extending the reach of sensitization workshops to thousands, not just in north India, but also the states in southern and western parts of India. It comprised of workshops with both genders, particularly couples parenting girl child. The programs adorned with art & craft, socio-cultural activities, exhibitions etc., involved the participation of school going girls, people from corporate sector and parents of girls in 0-6 age group.
A doll making workshop was conducted for spreading the message of Kanya Bachao. The participants were trained to make fabric dolls and decorate it in traditional manner to add flavour. Further, key chains, badges, placards, bookmarks, pencil caps, decorative items etc. were made using those dolls. The activity grabbed the interest of young girls and homemakers specifically.
Making it a little contemporary, a selfie wall with the slogan of Kanya Bahcao was set outside the venue. Parents of girls in age group 0-6, being the major target group, were invited near the wall to take selfies against the wall and mark their pledge to save girl child and voice concern against sex selective abortions.
Thought-provoking lecture was delivered by ascetic disciples of His Holiness Shri Ashutosh Maharaj ji, accentuating the causes and consequences of sex selective abortions, clarification on the myths and misconceptions about girl child and reiterating spirituality as the sole remedy to alter societal consciousness in favour of the fairer sex. Extending the variety in the platter, traditional dance performance and motivational songs were performed by Santulan volunteers chanting the message to value girl child.
On the day of Lohri, bonfire was arranged with the parents and their female children as the tradition of the festival. Near the bonfire was an exhibition decorated to display the dolls prepared in the doll making activity, visual tools of awareness, program's publications etc.
DJJS is a socio-spiritual organisation, headed and founded by Shri Ashutosh Maharaj Ji, and is working globally for the establishment of world peace, using its technique of spirituality.