In October 1999 A
supercyclone struck Orissa and caused widespread damage. At
the time, the BAPS provided emergency aid to many afflicted
areas. Afterwards, the Sanstha undertook the responsibility
to build homes in Chakuliya, Banipat and Potak, located in
the Erasma block of Jagatsinhpur district.
Inspired by the selfless and dedicated services and devout
lives of the BAPS sadhus and volunteers over a period of many
months, the local residents adopted the vows of Satsang.
In June 2001, Pramukh Swami Maharaj visited the area and performed
the murti-pratishtha of the newly built Shri Swaminarayan
Mandir in Chakuliya-Banipat. Swamishri consecrated the murtis
of Shri Akshar Purushottam Maharaj and Shri Jagannathji.
Since then, the Satsang has continued to flourish. So, from
18 to 20 September 2004, a special shibir was held for the
devotees of this region in Jagatpur, located 8 km from Cuttack.
This special shibir was organised by the BAPS sadhus based
in Kolkata with the help of Pitambar Jena, a devotee of Cuttack.
The shibir was conducted by the sadhus mainly in Udiya –
the local language – with some parts being delivered
Women volunteers from the Satsang Activities Central Office
in Amdavad were also present to supervise the women’s
section of the shibir.
The shibir agenda featured guidance on how to perform daily
personal puja and other basic satsang rituals. There were
speeches by the sadhus on topics such as, ‘The Aim of
Human Life’, ‘The Life of Shastriji Maharaj’,
‘Niyam-Dharma’ and other topics. Through audio-visual
presentations and group discussions important aspects of satsang
were explained to and discussed with the devotees.
At the conclusion of the shibir, all the participants pledged:
1. To eat a vegetarian diet
2. To perform daily personal puja
3. To attend the weekly satsang assembly
4. To lead an addiction-free life, and
5. To bow with respect to parents.
In total 77 Oriya volunteers attended this shibir and derived
much inspiration and guidance to strengthen satsang in their
daily lives and families.