A New Beacon of Education – Utkal Gaurav International School Shines Bright in the Remote Village of Berunapadi, Odisha

  • Eastern spiritual values blended with western efficiency in this noble initiative by Eugenix Hair Sciences for the underprivileged children
  • Eminent people and business houses are supporting Utkal Gaurav Foundation – A Knowledge initiative by Eugenix Hair Sciences

Several titans of business, academics, sports, medicine and arts have come together in an unknown village Berunapadi, of Odisha, to commemorate the opening of the Utkal Gaurav International School (UGIS). The grand opening held in early March of this year was both witnessed and supported by individuals like Punit Goenka of Zee Entertainment Enterprises, Rajiv Bajaj of Bajaj Auto, Ranjan Pai of Manipal Education and Medical Group alongside Adar Poonawalla of Serum Institute of India, Sandeep Raheja of K Raheja Realty, Member of Parliament Dr Anil Jain, Rishi Kajaria of Kajaria Tiles, Md Azharuddin and Akshay Raheja of Exide Batteries. Besides these industrialists, Deepak Jain of Lumax Industries, Dr Ramakant Panda of Asian Heart Institute, and senior management from Eugenix Hair Sciences were present at the Berunapadi Village.

The non-profit charitable school for underprivileged children is set to revolutionise how students should get a “complete education” for life from a very early age. Founded by celebrated Hair Transplant surgeons Dr Arika Bansal and Dr Pradeep Sethi of Eugenix Hair Sciences, UGIS aims to create a holistic environment that nurtures each child’s body, mind and soul.

“Eastern spiritual values alongside western efficiency” is the main motto of the school, based upon the ideals of Jagadguru Paramahansa Yogananda. Paramahansaji had started a “How-to-Live” school in 1916-17 to give all-round training to the young lads who would mature into manhood with values and at the same time become stalwarts in their professions. “I find it enlightening that education is now more than just memorising facts and figures,” said celebrated devotional singer Anuradha Paudwal, who also visited the school’s inauguration earlier this month. The founders organised a special dedication service where Sri Naveen Patnaik, the Chief Minister of Odisha, oversaw the proceedings and several big names from the power circles of Mumbai, Hyderabad, Delhi and Mumbai.

From Odisha, the Chief Minister was also represented by Mass Education Minister Sri Sameer Ranjan Swain and Chandrani Murmu, MP Keonjhar. Among other high-profile attendees, the function was attended and supported by renowned film director AR Murugadoss of Ghajini fame, alongside film producer Salil Chaturvedi of Mumbai. The Mumbai contingent of supporters and attendees also included actors Gurmeet Chaudhary, Saurabh Pandey, and Asha Negi and singers Sonu Niigaam, Anup Jalota, Kavita Paudwal and Jubin Nautiyal.

In a short span of 45 days, UGIS is blossoming and expanding with Noted playback singer Jubin Nautiyal laying the foundation stone ceremony of the secondary block building and centre for arts, meditation and sports. The school will boast a state of the art sports complex for both indoor and outdoor sports including squash, tennis, table tennis, badminton, basketball, football, hockey & cricket. Highlighting the importance of education and good value system in a child’s life, Jubin shared, “It is encouraging to see Dr Sethi come back to his roots and contribute to enriching the lives of the underprivileged children by gifting them a free world school where they will learn the importance of education, discipline and follow their passion to better their and nation’s future.”

“In the name of my Guru Sri Paramahansa Yogananda, we want to create an environment where students can explore their spirituality and develop a sense of purpose and meaning. By combining spirituality and education, we hope to help our students become well-rounded individuals equipped to make a positive impact in the world,” said Founder Dr Pradeep Sethi, unable to hold back his emotions on a crucial moment in history for his village and his people.

In line with the ideals of Paramahansa Yogananda, the founders foresee that a model world civilization can become a reality much faster in this new information age. Therefore, the founders are determined to replicate the academic standards of Universities like Stanford and Harvard alongside the ancient spiritual values enshrined in Indian ashrams.

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