Pledge for Drug-free India
The record for a maximum (1,26,613) people participating in a synchronous pledge for drug-free India at a single venue was set by The Art of Living Foundation of Pune, Maharashtra in collaboration with Savitribai Phule Pune University.
The record for the maximum number of people participating in a synchronous pledge for drug-free India at a single venue was set by The Art of Living Foundation of Pune, Maharashtra in collaboration with Savitribai Phule Pune University. A total of 1,26,613 students from all the prominent institutes of the city along with the Art of Living Foundation came together and took the pledge for Drug-Free India at the Suryakant Kakde Farms, Kothrud, Pune, on February 4, 2023. The attempt created a record under the India Book of Records and Asia Book of Records simultaneously.
In a bid to prevent addiction and mental stress among the youth, the Art of Living Foundation in association with the Pune University, Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR), and other statutory and educational institutions organised the EduYouthMeet in Pune on February 4 in which over 1 lakh students from more than 800 colleges were expected to participate. Prominent educational institutions such as College of Engineering Pune (COEP) Technological University, Symbiosis University, Bharati Vidyapeeth University, Maharashtra Education Society (MES) Group of Institutions, Progressive Education Society, and Maharshi Karve Stri Shikshan Sanstha, etc. were also involved in organising the event. The central theme of the EduYouthMeet is the new education policy (NEP) 2020, human values and a drug-free India.
Around 15 years ago, the Art of Living (AOL) started the fight against drugs across the world. Their holistic interventions have given more than 25,000 addicts a second chance to lead normal lives. The organisation began the biggest rebellion against drugs with a pledge to a Drug-Free India. The nationwide movement was flagged off in Punjab and Haryana with thousands of people taking a pledge with Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, actor Sanjay Dutt, rapper Badshah, and comedian Kapil Sharma. The pledge included affirmations like ‘Na Karenge Na Karne Denge’ and ‘No Drugs – Not for me, Not for others’. The speakers said, “Drugs pose the risk of destroying emotional stability, health, and relationships of an entire generation. We want to reverse the risk. We want to make it more likely for that college kid to join the gym than to smoke crack, more likely for him to set and pursue meaningful goals rather than worry about where his next hit is coming from.”
Students who attended the EduYouthMeet were given a digital certificate accredited by the heads of the participating educational groups and statutory bodies. The highlight of the EduYouthMeet was an interactive session with Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar in which practical techniques to handle exam stress and anxiety were also taught. Virendra Rajput, a PG Diploma in Marketing (PGDM) student, said, “I was privileged to be a part of the EduYouthMeet addressed by Gurudev Shri Shri Ravishankar. The grand event was hosted by Savitribai Phule Pune University and the top educational institutions of Pune, in association with the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) and the Art of Living Foundations. It was a lifetime experience as over one lakh youth and educators came together to strengthen human values and spread the message of ‘Sanga Chhadhwam’ (May you move in harmony). I would like to thank the Ramachandran International Institute of Management (RIIM Pune) for granting me this opportunity of attending such a great event.”