‘Yugpurush – The Play’ coming to the theatres across the UK, an Untold Story in Indian History of the relationship that transformed Mohandas into Mahatma …reports Asian Lite News
Recently London witnessed the International launch of ‘Yugpurush – the Play’ by Shrimad Rajchandra Mission Dharampur UK (SRMD UK), at the Bushey Academy in Bushey Hertfordshire. Announcing its first International Tour beginning in the UK from April 27th to 10th May 2017, Mr Mayur Mehta President of SRMD UK confirmed that the UK tour comprises over 15 shows, planned in cities including Manchester, Leicester, London and Southampton. A UK premier of the play will commence the tour in Manchester, on 27th April. Tickets will be available on www.yupurush.org/uk
Yugpurush is the untold story of two philosophical titans of Indian history, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhiji and his spiritual mentor Shrimad Rajchandraji. It portrays their heart-touching relationship that helped transform Mohandas into Mahatma.
The year 2017 marks the 150th birth anniversary of Shrimad Rajchandraji. It is in commemoration of this occasion, and under the able guidance of Pujya Gurudevshri Rakeshbhai, Founder of Shrimad Rajchandra Mission Dharampur and inspiration for the Yugpurush Drama, that SRMD presents ‘Yugpurush – Mahatma na Mahatma’ to UK audiences.
An audience of over 250 VIP guests from all sectors of the Gujarati and Hindi speaking community around the UK gathered at the Grand Hall in Bushey, to watch reviews, video clips and hear the latest news about this drama. Since its world premiere in Mumbai on 14th November 2016, it has been staged all over India, with 150 sell out shows in under 90 days in over 30 cities, with another incredible further 200 shows already planned.
Guest speakers Mr A S Rajan, Minister of Co-ordination from High Commission of India and Mr C B Patel, chairman of APBL Group addressed the audience with anecdotes underlining the importance of the key principles of compassion, non-violence and truth in the modern world.
Mr A S Rajan commented that it is vitally important at this time, that the world looks to the message of Gandhian values and the power of non-violence instead of weapons and policies that cause mass destruction. He had often wondered how a man such as Gandhiji had been empowered to achieve so much in many different disciplines, and realises now there was a spiritual guide and force behind him in the form of Shrimadji, who inspired his values and guided his journey.
Mr C B Patel, himself a keen admirer of Shrimad Rajchandraji for many years, added that he has a personal connection with Shrimadji through his great-grandfather who had met him in his home town of Bhadran in western Gujarat. He feels that this play will be a turning point in the understanding of the contribution made by non-violence and truth, values imbibed by Gandhiji, to the Indian independence struggle against British rule.
60 organisations were represented at the launch, spread across the Indian diaspora in the UK, including Shree Swaminarayan BAPS, the Anoopam Mission, Sangam Ladies Association, Brahma Kumaris, Lyca Media, Lohana Community and the Gandhi Foundation. Opportunities to sponsor the UK tour and specific shows were announced with many partnerships immediately taken up.
‘Yugpurush – The Play’ is also being recognised for critical acclaim by the arts and drama Industry having recently received four nominations in the 16th annual Transmedia Gujarati Screen and Stage Awards 2016 including Best Play and Best Director!
Yugpurush highlights the values of expanding one’s capacity to love and give selflessly, respecting diversity, supporting truth, fostering trust, and building lasting communities. It brings to the forefront a powerful experience of looking within, upholding truth and fearlessness, as well as transforming character and consciousness. It revives an inspiring spiritual legacy and the cultural ethos of India, that lies mostly forgotten, today. The legacies of Shrimadji and Gandhiji continue to offer new paradigms to global peace and human progress.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the occasion of India’s 70th Independence Day said, “The country is celebrating the 150th birth anniversary of Shrimad Rajchandraji, Mahatma Gandhiji’s Guru. In one of His letters to Gandhiji, Shrimadji writes … the principle of non-violence has existed ever since the existence of violence. What is important is which one do we utilise for the welfare of mankind.” A question that underlines the relevance of this profound relationship in today’s turbulent world.
The great-grandson of Mahatma Gandhi, Tushar Gandhi, shared his thoughts after watching the world premiere of ‘Yugpurush in Mumbai. He said, “What is important for me is the humility and the selflessness that Shrimadji instilled in Bapu, because of which an ordinary man could rise to become a Mahatma. I hope you take this play all over the world, but especially to those places that need it the most – where the message of ahimsa is absent. These two greats have sown in us the seeds of becoming better human beings. It’s now upon us to irrigate it with our own experiences, and with the humility of the belief that we are nothing but instruments.”
The Play will also support the cause of Shrimad Rajchandra Hospital – a new 200-bed multi-specialty charity hospital for the economically underprivileged in one of the poorest rural area’s of Southern Gujarat. SRMD’s aim behind the year-long celebration of Shrimad Rajchandraji’s 150th birth anniversary is to spread Shrimad Rajchandraji’s values of non-violence and truth that shaped Gandhiji’s beliefs, and to bring His spiritually uplifting teachings to the maximum number of people from all walks of life.