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Lavanam feted for his humanist services

Special Correspondent

Awarded by International Service Society, USA



Another feather: Lavanam, recepient of the awards from International Service Society,USA.

VIJAYAWADA: City-based Atheist leader Lavanam has been conferred with Lifetime Achievement Award for his commitment and dedication to world peace and for his exemplary service to humanity.

The award was given by International Service Society, a humanitarian service of Vaishnava Center for Enlightenment based at Okemos, Michigan, in United States of America.

The Society has bestowed the honour on Mr. Lavanam recognising the pivotal role he played in reformation of criminal tribes, rehabilitation of sex workers (joginis), promoting positive atheism and using it as an effective tool to unite people, bridging the gap between theists and atheists, economic self-reliance and regeneration and finding new ways for peace.

Son of noted social reformist Gora, Lavanam was trained in his father's school of thought – positive atheism. Making the most of his father Gora's close association with Mahatma Gandhi, Lavanam closely observed Gandhiji's activities during his visit to Sevagram Ashram. Later, he joined the Bhoodan Movement (Land Gift Movement) of Vinoba Bhave and travelled with him in the Bhoodan Pada Yatra across Andhra Pradesh.

He was also witness to the historic surrender of dacoits in the Chambal Valley. Drawing inspiration from Vinoba and Jayaprakash Narayan, Lavanam started working with criminal tribe reformation in parts of South India and the movement was carried out in five successful stages. Jogini reform, steps to promote inter-caste marriages and an unrelenting fight against blind beliefs and superstition are other areas he focused on.

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