Debasis Bera, India

“I feel Jai Jagat can be the beginning of transformation in the world.”

Debasis recalls how he became associated with Gandhian thought from a very early age. “I was just 16 years old when I met Bhaiji ( Dr. S. N. Subba Rao), Prembhai and Baba Amte in a youth camp. After spending 8 days with them, I experienced a deep calling from within that motivated me to work for peace and rural development”.

Debasis is from Shantiniketan, West Bengal. He has worked to promote livelihood through natural resource management and towards strengthening the decentralization system. One of the turning points of his life was when he met Dr. S. N. Subba Rao, Prembhai and Baba Amte.

“They were true Gandhian, who not only believed but lived a life of a Gandhian. I just looked at them in awe.”

After this encounter, Debasis felt that his true purpose was to work for peace and decided to work for it. He was just a 16 year old boy then but he was determined.

Since then he has traveled to many Gandhian organisations across India.

“I wanted to know more about Gandhian thoughts and I came to know about Gram Swaraj. This motivated me to work in a rural environment. “Debasis has been working with various marginalized communities for forest rights and land rights.

“ I feel Jai Jagat can be a great learning for me on different cultures, development processes, gender systems, youth, culture and environment.”

It was very difficult for Debasis to make up his mind to join Jai Jagat as he is one of the earning sources of his family. But he believes that his needs will be taken care of one way or the other as he is going to be a part of something much bigger.