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HTA Disburses Scholarships & Donates To Police Officer’s Fund On Volunteer Appreciation Day
BY RAVI R PONANGI
In a well attended function on Sunday, August 14, the Hindu temple of Atlanta honored the services of its volunteers and trustees. The program started with an invocation to Lord Ganesha by Kumari Akhila Echampati. This was followed by Chanting of Vedic hymns by the temple priests led by Sri Gopal
Dr Jayasree Moparthy, president of the temple, appraised all of the activities and rituals at the temple during the current year. Highlight of the New Year was the consecration of the newly built Yagasala. Upcoming events for 2012 include Sivalaya Dhwaja stambha pratisthapana and 20th anniversary celebrations of the Balaji temple at 2012 Brahmotsavam. She announced a donation of $ 2500 to the Clayton County Police officers fund to aid the families of officers killed in the line of duty. Dr S I Naidu, past president of the temple presented the check to the Deputy Chief of Police, Chief Robinson.
Dr Ravi Sarma, Chairman of the Education Committee honored Prof. Sundaresan and Prof. Venu Dasigi for their continued exceptional services to the Temple sponsored Bala Vihar and SAT educational classes respectively. Classes are being held on week ends in temple premises since several years.
Dr P B Rao, joint secretary of the temple, while presenting scholarships elaborated on the scholarship program which is a culmination of efforts by dedicated individuals over several years that came to fruition this year. Four awards were given to deserving graduating high school seniors. Selection was based on their academic achievements, community service activities and more importantly on their financial need. The awardees received a Sanskrit citation emphasizing the value of education and a cash award of $ 1000.00 each.
Awardees for this year are Pitamber Adhikari, Likhita Duggirala, Sai Swaraj Maddali and Adhithya Rajasekaran. These are renewable for the duration of their under graduate years, subject to achievement of certain educational scores and continuing need. The recipients are encouraged to volunteer in the Temple to learn and follow the tenets and teachings of Hindu dharma.
Dr Hyma Mikkilineni, immediate past president, profusely thanked all the past Presidents and Volunteers whose selfless service has elevated the Temple to the present premiere status. This was followed by melodious variety entertainment program including Kuchipudi dance performance by disciples of Smt. Sasikala Penumarthi, classical music on Violin by Ramesh Panchagnula, with Anjaneya Sastry on Tabla and light vocal singing by Subra Viswanathan and Radhika Sundara Raghavan.
Hindu Temple of Atlanta has several landmark events from the original ground breaking to the present shining twin temple monument that it is on Atlanta's landscape. Dr BK Mohan walked the gathering through those nostalgic memories with his excellent collection of photographs.
As usual Narender Reddy, Vice President, was witty and effusive in his vote of thanks.
The beautifully decorated banquet hall, thanks to Dr Tulasi Vanapalli, was the venue for a delicious mouthwatering dinner prepared by chef Ramakrishna and other kitchen staff and volunteers and organized by Mrs. Geeta Raghu, Dr Sujatha Reddy, Dr Tulasi Vanapalli, Smt Parvathi Kancherla, Ms Kamala Boggarapu and other volunteers.
More than 300 guests, including officers of Riverdale city, Clayton County and office bearers of other leading community organizations in Atlanta, attended the program and enjoyed the hospitality of the temple. Dr Jayasree Moparthy told this reporter that efforts will be made to make this an annual event.