Women of India outdo men in philanthropy

Women of India have outperformed Indian men in philanthropy.

Latest list of Forbes Asia of “48 Heroes of Philanthropy” contains only four Indians and all of them are women.

These philanthropic heroes are: Anu Aga (67, Director of Thermax; Thermax donates 1% of its profits to charity), Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw (56, Chairman of Biocon; contributed $10 million to Bangalore Cancer Center, donates $2 million annually towards health insurance of villagers, committed $3 million to Hyderabad Business School); Kiran Nadar (58, wife of HCL Technologies cofounder Shiv Nadar; opened an Art Museum), and Rohini Nilekani (50, Infosys investor; donated $40 million over the years).

Acclaimed Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, urged each Indian to take a vow of undertaking at least one charitable project during this year for less fortunate members of the community.

Quoting scriptures, Zed, who is president of Universal Society of Hinduism, said that charity was a duty, which should be undertaken with sympathy and modesty. He advised Hindus to focus on inner search, stay pure, explore the vast wisdom of scriptures, make spirituality more attractive to youth and children, stay away from the greed, and always keep God in your life.

Stressing renunciation, Rajan Zed pointed out that three opening words of ancient scripture Isha Upanishad: “tena tyaktena bhunjita” said it all—“By renouncing it {the world}, enjoy it.” Bhagavad-Gita, another ancient scripture, also promised “freedom through renunciation”.

Consumerism had resulted in neglecting spiritual values, Rajan Zed argued and quoted Bhagavad-Gita, which says: there are three gates to self-destructive hell—greed, anger, and desire. Abandon these three. A person freed from these three gates of darkness, seeks what is best and attains life’s highest goal.

Hinduism is oldest and third largest religion of the world with about one billion adherents and moksh (liberation) is its ultimate goal. Forbes is an American publishing and media company. Headquartered in New York (USA) and launched in 1917, Steve Forbes is its editor-in-chief.