The Lakshmibai Kelkar memorial exhibition and yatra, which began from Vardha (Maharashtra) on August 9, 2003, to visit all those 100 places where Lakshmibai Kelkar, (popularly known as Vandaniya Mausiji and founder of the Rashtra Sevika Samiti, visited in her lifetime to spread the Samiti work), reached Guwahati on April 1 after covering a distance of 28,000 km. During this period the yatra successfully organised exhibitions at 94 places in 20 states. In the beginning it was decided to organise exhibitions at 100 places but now, seeing the overwhelming response of the people, the exhibition will be organised at 104 places. The exhibition and the yatra in two vehicles are being supervised by Pramilatai Medhe Sahpramukh Sanchalika of Rashtra Sevika Samiti. The objective of the yatra is to prepare the ground for the birth centenary of the Vandaniya Mausiji to be celebrated all over the world next year.
Speaking at a coordination committee meeting of Rashtra Sevika Samiti in Guwahati, Pramilatai Medhe pointed out that this yatra would pass through Guwahati, Shillong, Silchar, Haflong, Naugaon, Shivsagar, Tening, Imphal, Itanagar, Dhubri, and Siliguri, and would conclude at Kolkata on April 28. The exhibition-cum-yatra will formally conclude on May 2 at Samiti´s headquarters in Nagpur. She also pointed out that the exhibition and awareness journey had received a grand reception all over the country and people belonging to all sections and ideologies of the society had not only turned to witness the exhibition, but were also mighty impressed by it.
The Samiti has decided to induct in at least 21 new Pracharikas and also to extend the number of shakhas to 400, in the centenary year of Smt Kelkar in the year 2005. A three-day training camp of 100 sevikas will also be organised, she informed. Constituted in 1936, the Rashtra Sevika Samiti has reached all the states of the country as well as 15 other countries of the world. The organisation is devoted to the cause of infusing a sense of patriotism and awakening self-pride in the women. (VSK)