Know India Program (KIP) Team Hosted by CVV

As part of the 66th edition of the Know India Program (KIP) of the Union Ministry of External Affairs, a 60-member group of Indian expatriate youth and students from foreign countries arrived at Chinmaya Vishwa Vidyapeeth (CVV), Deemed to be University. At the Chinmaya Eshwar Gurukula campus, Veliyanad, students and teachers welcomed the team in the traditional Kerala style. They spent two days, 7th and 8th of August 2023 at the CVV campus. 

KIP is an initiative of the Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India, for the youth belonging to the Indian diaspora living abroad. Youths aged 18–30 are brought to India as part of this programme to be introduced to India and the facets of our lives, our cultural heritage, art, and various aspects of contemporary India.

Every year, selected youth come to India as our national guests for about one month, fully sponsored by the Central Government. This year these national guests are visiting Kerala, and CVV University hosted them for a day and a half in coordination with NORKA Roots, Government of Kerala.

Day 1

Swami Advayananda, president of Chinmaya International Centre, presided over the welcome meeting. He explained the importance of the new generation’s understanding of the heritage of India. Additional Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs, Manika Jain, IFS, delivered the keynote address. She particularly appreciated the efforts of Chinmaya Vishwa Vidyapeeth Deemed to be a university to bring change in the field of education as per the times through its emphasis on the traditions of India. Manika Jain also talked about the glory of Veliyanad, which was made sacred by the birth of Adi Shankara. Chinmaya Vishwa Vidyapeeth Deemed to be University Vice Chancellor Prof. Ajay Kapoor’s message was read on the occasion. NORKA Roots PRO Dr. Krishnakumar, CVV’s Dean of Academics, Prof. T. Asokan, CVV’s Assistant Dean Dr. Manjula R. Iyer and others spoke. Registrar of CVV, Dr. Rahul Sharma and Dean—Research Prof. Girish Kumar jointly honoured the distinguished guests.

Day 2

The 60-member group of expatriate youth and students of Indian origin in foreign countries were welcomed in the traditional Kerala style with a Chendamelam on the second day. A Pookalam prepared by the students and faculty added to the festive environment.

The faculty explained the significance and legend behind Onam and the rituals pertaining to its celebration. There was also an audio-visual presentation.

The team then visited the library at the Chinmaya International Foundation where ancient texts are preserved. The next stop was the Melpazhur Mana, the birthplace of Sri Adi Sankaracharya. Brahmachari Ved Chaitanya explained the history and tradition of the Mana.

CVV students performed the Thiruvathira Kali in the courtyard of Melpazhur Mana. Maveli, Pulikali, and Chendamela accompanied the group as they exited the Mana.

The participants and CVV students were then divided into groups to take part in a game of tug-of-war. It was a fun and exciting experience for the guests. This was followed by the Uriyadi competition. The games aptly built everyone’s appetite for the sumptuous Onam sadya (meal) that followed.

Next on the agenda was training in the making of Kerala handicrafts. Ushakumari and Charulata from Ernakulam led the training session. Ashwant PK (Second year B.Sc.B.Ed. Mathematics) introduced various handicrafts. Nibha M. (Second year B.A.B.Ed. English) explained the advanced areas of painting. Those who came to know India were excited about the Onam celebrations, which were prepared before Kerala reached Onavesham.