Bellur Krishnamachar Sheshamma Smaraka Nidhi Trust
The trust’s education initiatives alone are a launching pad for uplifting future generations, a vision close to Guruji’s heart. To make education a reality, the Trust waives all school fees; supplies uniforms, books and stationary, and provides a hot lunch, often the children’s only meal of the day. The Trust built, equipped and staffed a high school, which received an overwhelming show of confidence from the villagers, who enrolled 170 of their sons and daughters. All the children from Bellur who took their first public exam after three years in the high school passed, and many in the first division! In this way, the Trust has engaged the community successfully in the struggle for their basic human rights and has provided the groundwork for a brighter future.
Bellur, a small village 40 km’s from Bangalore, is BKS Iyengar’s birthplace. It was an impoverished pile of rubble and would have remained so had it not been for BKS Iyengar’s hard work to uplift his village.
Guruji said that he owed something to the soil where he was born.
“ It gives me great contentment to give to others what god has given me. I have taken up the task of uplifting my native village, Bellur, And other backward villages in india through educational, cultural, social. And health related projects. It has not been an easy task. But the transformation that the Bellur krishnamachar sheshamma Smaraka Nidhi Trust has achieved in a relatively short span of time is remarkable.”
In 1967, a total sum of 990 pounds was collected by arranging Guruji’s yoga demonstrations in England and Switzerland to build a primary school.
The Trust’s first practical task to ensure good health was to locate pure ground water. Today the village is supplied with clean drinking water by a huge water storage tank with a capacity of 50,000 gallons of water.
In May 2005, the high school was inaugurated and named Smt Ramamani Sundaraja Iyengar High School and the entire area had been named as Ramamani Nagar.
On the first day of admissions, Guruji himself sat through the interviews of the children and the teachers. On this occasion Prashantji distributed books and uniforms to the children.
Sensitive to the fact that children cannot study on an empty stomach, Guruji ensures that the school provides a free mid-day meal. It is indeed gratifying that in 2016 the children are no longer hungry for food, they hunger for knowledge!
At Guruji’s 94th birthday celebrations in Bellur, the children of the Ramamani Iyengar secondary school gave an exceptional demonstration of the most difficult asanas. They proved that talent in children could be nurtured and nourished with right guidance, training, exposure and inspiration.
Their confidence was remarkable as they performed in front of 4000 people! The children’s beautiful performance rendered the Governor of Karnataka speechless and made Guruji a very happy and satisfied man. Certainly the soil of Bellur is truly exceptional!
Over the last decade, the trust has gradually increased the educational opportunities and facilities for the children of the village of Bellur and the neighbouring villages. It started with improving the facilities of the existing primary and middle school, the high school and now the college
Was inaugurated on guruji’s 94th birthday by the governor of the state of Karnataka. Among the host f dignitries, was the industrialist and yoga student Mr. Rajiv Bajaj.
It is his big heartedness that supported the construction if this college building.
The trust established a fully equipped day care hospital. The medical services, surgical procedures and medication is free for the village. The Ramamani Sundaraja Iyengar hospital ensures that the village receives the essential health care.
Bellur is only a 1.2 kms walk away from the center, where you can immerse yourself in the amazing Indian culture.
Guruji reinstated Bellur to its ancient glory, when he undertook to build the world’s first Patanjali temple in 2004.
Within the patanjali temple complex, an 800 year old hanuman temple was renovated and reopened for worship. The Bellur krishnamachar sheshamma Smaraka Nidhi Trust also restored and sanctified a temple dedicated to lord Rama.
Along with these temples, there is a temple dedicated to Rishi Valmiki who was the famed author of epic Ramayana.
Guruji Started Bellur krishnamachar sheshamma Smaraka Nidhi Trust in 2003 to improve the quality of life for the local villagers. The intent of this trust s to bring about a silent revolution and uplift the entire local community. Guruji believed that good health and education would form a firm foundation for social and economic reforms.
Message from Guruji:
“We are human beings, so we should have the qualities to help human beings. That is what I feel is charity:” – BKS Iyengar
Here is the letter in which Guruji originally asked for our help with the Bellur project:
“ Dear Admirers of Yoga
I am writing as all of you have generously helped my Bellur Krishnamachar & Seshamma Smaraka Niddhi Trust in undertaking to help not only the people of my village, but also the surrounding villages. The need is more than what I anticipated.
I have promised the Trust that I will personally do all I can financially but it seems that it is not enough.
As you all generously obliged with love and affection, I request you all to extend your helping hand further so that the works that are undertaken would be completed and leave some core money to maintain and run until the Trust finds means to do it on its own.
Please help this deserving cause.
With my grateful thanks in advance” – BKS Iyengar
Your donations will help the project’s comprehensive and community-based approach evolve in order to define a better future for Bellur and the surrounding villages of the Kolar District. Our yoga community can work together to make a significant contribution toward a positive change in circumstances in the world today. With our collective efforts, our Iyengar Yoga community can make our beloved Guruji’s vision a reality.
Managing Trustee: B Raghu