To commemorate Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s Shatabdi Mahotsav and India’s Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav, children of the BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha conducted a large-scale De-Addiction Campaign between 8 and 22 May 2022. During his lifetime, Pramukh Swami Maharaj inspired over 40 lakh people worldwide to give up addictions. Following in his footsteps, these children sacrificed their summer vacation to spread the message of de-addiction and promote a healthier society.
Guruhari Mahant Swami Maharaj blessed these young campaigners with a spirit to ‘March Forward’ at the inauguration on 8 May 2022 in Surat. With such inspiration, the gallant young children went out to wage a war on the perilous addictions that plague and hinder society.
In total, 16,000 boys in groups of four (total: 4,200 groups) contacted people at their homes, shops, factories, bus stands and many public places during the 15-day campaign. They informed them about the health, financial, cultural and other benefits of freeing themselves from the shackles of gutka, cigarettes, tobacco, liquor and other inappropriate habits. Undeterred by hardships, summer heat, odd hours and other inconveniences, the boys enthusiastically reached out to and personally met over 1.4 million people throughout Gujarat, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, New Delhi, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal and Karnataka. Of these, over 400,000 people pledged to shun their addictions and that they, too, would convince other to give up their addictions.
Among the benefits of conducting this campaign was that the boys gained confidence and developed communication and leadership skills. Furthermore, the campaign also consolidated their own resolve to never engage in any form of addictions.