Monday, October 10, 2011

A small step towards fruition of The Chirag Light India Movement

On Sunday 9th October, twenty students from DP 1 and DP 2, accompanied by the IBDP CAS Coordinator, Ms Chhaya Purwar, the IBDP Coordinator Ms Padmavathy Suresh and the Head of the School, Mr James M Paul, travelled to the village of Dongarshetpada in the remote interior of District Thane, to install 35 solar lamp kits in 35 homes which have no acess to electricity. This was the culmination of the school's fund-raising drive, spearheaded by the IBDP students of the school which raised Rs 1,40,000 for Project Chirag, on behalf of the NGO Pargathi Prathisthan.

Travelling into the remote regions of Thane to reach the village, interacting with the grateful villagers, trekking around the village to reach the far-flung homes of the villagers on the use and maintenance of the lamps and finally partaking of a simple and wholesome meal prepared by the villagers specially for the visitors was an experience which the students will carry with them for the rest of their lives.

Congratulations to all the students who were involved in this exercise and a special word to Ms Chhaya Purwar and Ms Padmavathy Suresh for their support and guidance.

- Reproduced from the editorial PROJECT CHIRAG-MISSION ACCOMPLISHED of RBK International Academy newsletter dated 10th October 2011, written by James M Paul

Lighting the forgotten lands of Rural India was really a life-time experience for all of us. The students were simply ecstatic as they could bring lights to remove darkness into the lives of these families just a few days before Diwali. Out of 72000 villages, RBKIA IBDP students were providing solar lamps to the 74th village. It constituted their first endeavor for such a noble cause. I am very confident that many more will follow to create positive change thereby transforming lives by spreading light. Thus, for the students light is not just a lamp but it is a vital spark to brighten the lives of our fellow countrymen.

IBDP students - all set to install solar lamps in the village.

Ready, steady and go!

The village Dongarshetpada-where our students went for installing lights.

Students waiting for instructions.

NGO Pragathi Prathisthan's representative carried the equipment on a SUV

The battery used for drilling holes in the wooden supports of the houses to fix the hooks.

Rohan and Kiran HR Commerce College students (SIFE) with tube light

One torch per house was provided to the villagers for moving around in the night. It also has a provision for charging a mobile phone.

The solar panel to collect light energy during the day.

It works even in diffused light during Monsoon

Everybody busy listening to the instructions.

The tool kit box.

Jyotirmoy Chatterji President of SIFE, explaining the method of fixing the lights.

Be careful of inserting the correct pin into the correct socket!

The NGO Representative taking the thumb impressions of the villagers for receiving the equipment.

Jugal with tool kit belt.

Shubham and Tejas are ready to go for installation with the villager

Manali and Jill with another villager-Happy to help!

It is heartening that some villagers can read and write .

Rounak and Jigar trying to fix the hooks in the wooden beam.

Well done!

Jigar and Rounak explaining the functioning of the lights.

Rishabh and Rishikesh fixing the wires of the tube light

Yes it works!
Ms Padma with villagers. 

Jill installing the light

Jill-checking the tube light

Manali installing the tube light.

Manali and Jill with happy villagers.

A technician installing solar panel on the roof top.

Fresh cucumber straight from fields for salad

Jugal and Manali distributing some food packets to village children.

The wholesome meal prepared by the villagers for the students. It is not only a meal but their blessings galore!

Hungry Kya?

Everybody enjoying the simple food.

Good food.

Jigar distributing fried rice to villagers.

Students are overjoyed!

We would certainly light many more villages! 

Aarohi Parliker - Tumhala Diwali cha hardik shubhechcha!


  1. Dear Chhaya
    What an inspiring project. Happy to see the children installing the lamps in the space. Happy Diwali to you too.

  2. Noble cause indeed, congrats to all involved.

  3. @ Thank you very much for your kind words of appreciation. The students will definitely imbibe great values of life.