Saturday, 29 November 2014

Happy Birthday Revaa!

Invoking the blessings of Lord Ganesha as we begin the program at PRC…(and there’s Rasika just behind her with her loving guidance)

The jawans at PRC are mesmerised at Revaa’s flawless rendering of ‘Ekdantaya Vakratundaya’

And now it’s time for some light music on the synthesizer

Rasika gets to know the little boys at Sarva Seva Sangh

Fr Babu blesses Revaa for her act of sharing and caring. Nayan from SSS also wishes the 'Birthday Girl'

She is the youngest member to help Team Miracle. Last year, when she was just 8, Revaa was part of an entertainment program which we held at the Paraplegic Rehab Centre. It was Revaa who set the program in motion with a soulful rendering of ‘Ekdantaya Vakratundaya’ invoking the blessings of Lord Ganesha, and later followed it up with two songs on her synthesizer. All of us were mesmerized at the little girl’s flawless and unfaltering enunciation of the Sanskrit chants, and her air of assurance as she stood alone on that wide stage. This was on 14 Dec, 2013, and for her, it was a Thanksgiving for her birthday, which she had celebrated a fortnight earlier on 30 November.

This year, Revaa decided that while she would invite only a small group of close friends for her home birthday party, she also wanted to interact with those who are not so privileged. Accordingly, a week before her special day, Revaa arrived with her mother at Sarva Seva Sangh with a large bag of goodies for the little kids. The children at the SSS shelter crowded around them joyfully, for a visitor is always welcome…and one bearing gifts even more so.   

Of course, the mother’s guiding hand can be detected throughout. True to our Team Miracle’s chain of activities, Rasika and Reva’s active participation and teamwork is nothing sort of a coincidence…or shall we call it a Miracle! Although Rasika is just a few years older than my daughter, we had first met as colleagues at the Indian Express. We then lost touch as she got married and we both joined other writing opportunities. It was a chance meeting at a wedding which brought us together again.

As usual, it was a ‘What are you doing’ approach. Rasika loved the concept of our Team Miracle, and I was struck by the intelligence shining out of the then-three year-old Revaa.  Thereafter, I followed Revaa’s activities in school and at home, and what amazed me was the way Rasika introduced her daughter to so many activities at home – blending academic learning with creative arts, and also celebrating the best of our traditional festivals and rituals, with a wide and loving circle of friends and relatives. As she was generous enough to share these activities with me, I was always left yearning, “I wish I had thought of this when I was bringing up my daughter!”

Even now, with an extremely busy work schedule, Rasika still manages to inculcate a wide range of noble ideas and make high thinking a way of life for little Revaa. She shares, “Revaa and I said a little prayer at our home puja-place before we left to meet you - ‘All around we see people who have so much more than us. Instead of looking that way, we say a huge thank you for letting us have enough to be able to share some of it with those who don't even have that much.’ This thought is what I hope will guide Revaa in her future years too - especially when she's earning her own money.” 

Such words of wisdom! …And as we from Team Miracle pray to the Almighty to shower blessings on Revaa on her Birthday, we hope many more among you will come forward like her and Rasika, and celebrate your birthdays, wedding-anniversaries or remembrance-ceremonies with the less-privileged.

Sarva Seva Sangh is a home for underprivileged children and ‘children at risk’ - street children, children who have lost one or both parents, children of sex-workers, children who are abused (sexually or otherwise) at home, as well HIV-affected (parents with HIV) and HIV-infected children. Based at Wadgaonsheri, SSS helps to rehabilitate, empower and educate them. 1,600 children benefit under their umbrella. While some stay at their various shelters, some get hot mid-day meals, some get snacks and informal education, while others get Nutrition packs. For more info, you can visit their website:

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