As he takes over the reigns of Governor of Rotary district 3142,it will indeed be a special moment for him. Twenty passionate years of literally putting sweat and delivering the results that all past district governors expected from him was no mean task. There was only one word called passion that fuelled his breathtaking journey as he accomplishes a quest of leading the district that many a Rotarians cherish. Dr Ashes Ganguly will be ceremoniously installed to the coveted post and too in the solemn presence of Past Rotary International President K.R.Ravindran in Thane on July 7.
In an heart to heart interview with KYT editor Mr Milind Ballal, Dr Ganguly unveils his plans for the year 2018-19 and also shares some of the intimate and intense moments that he experienced in Rotary.
Which philosophy of Rotary appeals you the most?
Like thousands of Rotarians across the world,I am deeply in love with the simple three word philosophy `Service Above Self`.It is this common thread that has keept the Rotary wheel moving for 113 years. Rotary International president Barry Rassin has mooted a theme `Be The Inspiration` for the year 2018-19,and the sphere of activities will revolve round it. Rotary has always played the role of motivator, it has been a messenger of positive attitude and therefore the theme encapsulates very aptly the sentiments of the organization world wide. 1.2 million odd Rotarians believe in the philosophy and put in their efforts for the betterment of society.I firmly believe that we are fortunate to be born as human beings and must make the best by remaining proactive.Platform of Rotary gives us the right opportunity.
What attracted you towards Rotary?
My first brush with Rotary was when I was 23.One of my father`s colleague had invited me to speak in a Rotary meeting.Eventually after completion of my education and then shifting my base in Thane,one of my business associates N.D. Joseph and Ravi Iyer prompted me to join Rotary. Rotary today has become a part of me and I am thoroughly enjoying the fellowship,activities and last but not the least the teachings of Rotary to think globally and act locally.
What impact Rotary had on your personality?
Tremendous. It changed my perception of looking at the world.It gave me an opportunity to explore my personality,to identify my strength and weakness,cultivate a sense of social responsibility,fostering teamspirit and many other attributes that make an all round personality.I owe my success in profession very much to Rotary.I cannot think myself without Rotary.It has instilled confidence in me.
How do you perceive Rotary in today`s world?
Non government organizations(NGO) have a very significant role in today`s world.People`s participation has become a deciding factor ,particularly when the government bodies are getting overburdened.Rotary being not only a century old institution has one more advantage of being structural and with a global face.Hence the platform provided by Rotary is in a position to accomplish an array of projects right from health to conflict related problems and from education to environment.Polio eradication has been a flagship project of Rotary turning into a mission.The Rotary Foundation is being recognized by international body like the United Nations and philanthropists across the world have been investing in Rotary work for the sheer reason of transparency and financial discipline. Rotary has reached to the most deprived human being staying in the remotest part of the world and that makes the organization more relevant in today`s world. Rotary has proved its worth by being the first when there was a natural calamity,an epidemic,water crisis,environmental disaster or for that matter any mproblem that required good number of working hands and noble heart.Rotary will continue living upto its role in future.
Which moment in Rotary you cherish the most?
Many. But the two that come to my mind immediately are the smile that I saw on the faces of the parents whose child underwent a critical heart surgery conducted by my club Thane Hills few years back. The renovation of the crematorium at Wagle Estae accomplished by our club when I was the president gave me immense satisfaction.It is such meaningful activity that encourages you to keep on doing good for the society.
How do you remove the misconceptions about Rotary that are rampant in the society?
I strongly feel that our work and conviction of being good people itself will remove the misconceptions. We need not try to deliberately remove the grudges and reservations about Rotary.That would be exercise in futility.Instead think positive and be proactive,would be my advise.On personal level I feel that each Rotarian must open a demat account of service and keep on investing.The returns are definitely going to come back. Thre is absolutely no risk and dividend of self satisfaction is assured at the end of the day.
What are your plans as the leader of the district?
Thalassemia awareness is going top the priority list as the problem is more than serious than it is perceived,screening and adoption of patient,construction of toilet blocks in the Swachh Bharat mission,promoting Virtual eye project for the blind,adoption of mother,prevent child mortality,pediatric heart surgeries,e-waste management,construction of check dams etc are going to be the projects that the Rotary district 3142 will put all its efforts.