Rotary clubs in India have changed a lot from what they were in the 20th century, but the direction is worrisome. The liberty given to the clubs in inducting members, the dilution of personal touch with electronic communication which has resulted in poor attendance at weekly meetings; and the crumbling of the classification system, have all led to any Tom, Dick or Harry becoming a member. Liberty to reduce four meetings to two has resulted in poor rapport among the Rotarians, affecting personal relations and lower attendance at club meetings.
Due to dilution in the classification system, our image has nosedived and Rotary is no longer different from any other international NGO. Quality concepts are lost; members are not invited, but inducted like a herd, hurting our public image. Only The Rotary Foundation offers hope for a better tomorrow. All this despite our lawmakers sitting in the Council on Legislation.
PDG Madhukar, B Deodhar — D 3141
I find Rotary News very useful and share the information it carries with others at Rotary meetings. Please send us the list of subscribers from D 3231 as I want each Rotarian to subscribe to Rotary News. This will help us verify who has not paid their subscription dues.
Should I, as Governor, send the project details or can the clubs send them directly? What kind of projects qualify for publication? And through what mode do we have to send them? Kindly clarify these queries.
DG Jawarilal, Jain K — D 3231
Dear DG Jain,
Thanks for your appreciation which motivates us to do better. As for your query; the detailed list of subscription dues and non-subscribing clubs from your District has already been mailed to you. On sending news, refer to the September issue, Page 11, where I’ve written on how to get your iconic projects featured in Rotary News. https://rotarynewsonline.org/get-your-iconic-projects-featured-in-rotary-news/
Let numbers tell the Rotary story
RI President Ian Riseley has used his professional skill as a chartered accountant to good use by asking clubs to do self-assessment through a numeric data tool in the August issue. Now RI will ask clubs on Rotary Central to provide two numbers: the money spent in cash and kind on humanitarian services; and the number of hours spent on Rotary projects/activities. This will usher in transparency enabling the clubs’ self-assessment.
PP P C Sanghi — D 3054
Learn from Bagchi
I met Subroto Bagchi at the L V Prasad Eye Institute in Bhubaneswar while presiding over an event. I heard his talk and interacted with him on his vision in Skilling Odisha, (August issue). He is a great speaker with a vision and a bottom-to-top approach to achieve it. His rich experience will certainly bring a revolution in “skill development”. Rotary should incorporate this project to bring tangible results.
Major D K Zarekar, RC Nashik Ambad — D 3030
It was a pleasant surprise to see a familiar face on the cover of Rotary News (August issue). Skilling Odisha mission is tailormade for Subroto Bagchi. I interacted with him in the mid-1980s when he executed a reskilling plan for executives to take up sales and marketing activities. Wipro Infotech, then an infant in India’s IT industry, had embarked on a growth path which required reskilling the existing staff to handle client queries and sell its products. Bagchi led that initiative.
In his trademark down-to-earth manner, he helped us understand what a computer meant to small businesses, and the challenges a hands-on business head would encounter. The basic selling techniques that he shared with the motley group of engineer-MBAs was just the pep we needed. Using simple examples, he drove home the point to us wide-eyed learners. And all through, he recounted childhood anecdotes from his beloved Odisha.
Later on, we often recalled those tips while facing tough client situations. All power to Bagchi, as he shows the way to build a skilled Odisha, and Rotary India should engage with him. Thank you for this inspiring article.
Vidyut Shenoy, RC Bangalore Indiranagar — D 3190
Sandhya Rao’s passion for books and her journey through the land of books is admirable. She has really covered excellent classics in her write-up Summer magic (September issue). Books have given us certain immortal characters who continue to find mention in our daily conversations. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle gave us the detective character Sherlock Holmes, P G Wodehouse a great valet Jeeves, Earl Stanley Gardener the defence attorney Perry Mason, Agatha Christie created a Belgian detective Hercules Poirot. American essayist John Burroughs said: “I still find each day too short for all the thoughts I want to think, all the walks I want to take, all the books I want to read, and all the friends I want to see.”
H S Khurana, RC Ludhiana — D 3070
A ready reckoner for success
In the September issue I am tempted to reread the article by PRIP KR Ravindran, Mantra to succeed as Governors, giving invaluable advice to Rotary governors and incoming District leaders. The whole article is couched in a language which conveys useful, practical tips. He reminds us that “while popularity is temporary, respect is perennial.” His advice that to earn respect we should endeavour to “build monuments that will endure forever” is timely. There is an organic unity in the whole article which is an excellent recipe for a leader’s success.
PDG Kuldip Dhir, D — 3070
Thank you, Team Rotary News, on behalf of my District 3240 for the wonderful coverage of A Rotarian’s Literary Feat in the September issue.
DGE Dr Sayantan Gupta — D 3240
This refers to Sheela Nambiar’s What Women Want in the September issue, where she says: Food is intricately woven with emotions, besides satisfying physical hunger. PRIP K R Ravindran had once said, “Women know the needs of the community better but their opinion is not sought. A club that shuts out women, shuts out much more than half the talent, ability and the connections it should have.”
The writer has aptly concluded: A woman should primarily love herself and everything else will fall into place.
Raj Kumar Kapoor, RC Roopnagar — D 3080
A heart-rending farewell
The September issue carries on its cover page the beautiful photo of Sam F Owori, which touches our hearts. And, who else, other than PRIP K R Ravindran, can give such a heart-rending account of Owori’s burial ceremony? When it was stated in the article that Sam and Norah never had the privilege to live in their just-built home, where he was made to rest temporarily before the last journey to his final resting place, we had to shed tears.
As usual, the issue has many good articles such as Recharging Rotaractors, How to get iconic projects featured in Rotary News, and the Editorial on women’s empowerment with anecdotes, which is thought-provoking, shows the writing skills of the Editor.
R Srinivasan, RC Madurai Midtown — D 3000
The article Sam Owori’s final journey was extremely emotional. Another article Mantra to succeed as Governors is praiseworthy and I liked the story Towards a TB free India very much. The introduction of DG Vyankatesh Vithal Channa (Meet your Governors) was also interesting.
Santosh Tiwari, RC Jalna Rainbow — D 3132
From a non-Rotarian
This letter from a non-Rotarian comes to thank you for your article A Venice experience in Mexico (April issue). It made me recall the moments I spent on those waters 30 years ago and helped me remember Venice and a few other nostalgic journeys I have undertaken in India, one on the River Godavari in Andhra Pradesh. Another nostalgic moment I remembered was my meeting with the then District Governor Kalyan Banerjee, when he was on his first official visit to Rajpipla. I was there with my limb under plaster, and he was very kind to thank me for attending that meeting… such a great soul.
I couldn’t climb that step from being a Rotaractor to Rotarian, but I am still in touch with Rotary. At times, I get Rotary News issues from the footpath, but this time your article and Kalyan Banerjee’s graceful face forced me to pick my pen and write a few lines to you. May an Editor like you keep adding value to Rotary News.
Sanjayant Sahasrabuddhe Jwalamukhi,
Kangra district Himachal Pradesh