TARKSHEEL MOVEMENT IN INDIA
Tarksheel Society (Regd.) (Rationalist Society India) was established in 1984, under the auspices of Sh. Megh Raj Mitter in order to educate and awaken the people about the menace and unfathomable dangers of all religions, caste system, untouchability, superstitions and miracles. Tarksheel Society (TS) under takes the mission to assert the supremacy of reason and scientific temperament over all arbitrary assumptions and artificially man made creeds. TS dedicates itself with all the resources and opportunities at its command to annihilate communalism, religious fanaticism, caste and untouchability. TS vehemently advocates the separation or religion and education on the real principles of secularism. TS stands for the voice its grievances against all kinds of repression and exploitation. TS endeavors to perpetuate the equality, freedom and happiness for the whole humanity.
TS has a well organized structure to achieve and realize its aims and objectives. There are units in almost all the villages and towns. These units are elected by the direct participation of all the members of the unit. These preliminary units are controlled and guided by the democratically elected district Bodies. These District Bodies are elected by the office bearers and all the members of the preliminary units. This whole set up is maneuvered by the state Body duly elected by the district bodies and the preliminary units.
In order to disseminate the philosophy of atheism, rationalism and free thought the TS organizes public meetings, conferences study camps, seminars, publication of literature and its distribution, dramas and demonstration of scientific games and play let etc. TS has its own drama and cultural squads and magic show teams. TS tries to expose the charlatanry of the Babas, Swamis, Ojhas, Chellas, Saints, astrologers and of all other so called masters of supernatural powers through the dramas, science exhibitions and direct challenges and investigations. TS has announced on cash award of rupees twenty lakh for the successful master of supernatural powers for demonstrating his miracle under fraud proof conditions. TS has published about 100 books in Punjabi and 20 books in Hindi language to inculcate the scientific temperament among the gullible people. These books include the translations of the books of Dr. Abraham T. Kovoor and biography of Prof. Gora also. TS has its own teams who shoulder the responsibility of treating the mentally deranged individuals. TS has solved about 300 cases of brick/stone throwing in the houses, burning and tearing of clothes, missing of precious and valuable articles including gold and silver ornaments from the houses. TS has also treated 40,000 cases psychologically ill patients allegedly said to be possessed by the ghosts, bhootas, pretays and evil spirits etc. The activities of TS are mainly confined to the state of Punjab but now and then it operates in the neighboring states of Haryana, Himachal Pardesh, Rajsthan, Delhi and Chandigarh, Uttar Pardesh, Madhya Pardesh & Jammu Kashmir also.
TS propagates its ideology and opinion regarding current social, political and other problems through hand bills, leaf lets and wall posters. TS also utilizes the newspaper media extensively in order to spread and popularise the scientific knowledge among the people. The role and the co-operation of the three leading Punjabi Dailies – ‘The Ajit’, ‘The Panjabi Tribune’ and ‘Desh Sewak’ – is worth appreciating. TSB also publishes its owns journals in Punjabi vernacular ‘Tarak Bodh’ (logical cognition) and ‘Vigayan Jyot’ (Scientific Enlightenment) and one in Hindi vernacular ‘Tarak Jyoti’ (Logical Enlightenment). The literature in the form of books has gone through many editions and thousands of copies of each book has been published and sold to the people through all the famous book stalls and reputed distributors.
With an open mind and with a view to enhance and promote the cause of atheism and rationalism TS has very cordial relations and understanding with all other like-minded organizations such as Atheist center Vijaywada, India Rationalist Association, The Atheist Society of India Visakhapatnam, Bihar Budhivadi, C.S.I.C.O.P. India (lead by B. Premand) etc. TS is having a firm Convection of exchanging the view and experiences with other organizations for the mutual benefit and in order to establish a strong world fraternity of the atheists/rationalists etc.
TS opines that religion is inimical to the progress of science. Rationalism demands that one should not emulate and believe anything without a proper through prior investigation and verification. Religion does not permit questioning. It is only science and atheism founded upon scientific knowledge which encourages free inquiry and investigation which in turn breed self confidence and self-reliance in the minds of the people. TS encourage and accelerate the spirit of free inquiry among its members, sympathizers, supporters and school going children. TS thus liberates them from the shackles of religious mental slavery.
TS envisages the bright and stable future for atheism as it is the only modern scientific outlook which can solve almost all the global problems being faced by the present religion-dominated society. No doubt the religion in on decline now a days. People are becoming more and more science oriented. The place of religion is being usurped by the humanism and atheism still much more is required to be achieved in this direction. Nevertheless the future is with Atheism TS is of the firm view that the religion has always divided the humanity, has retarded the progress of science and humanism, has tortured and eliminated the free thinking genius all the world over. Where ever on the other hand, the science has always fostered and promoted the spirit of free inquiry, has always welcomed the diverse and opposed opinions, has always advanced the goodwill and spirit of mutual co-operation. TS desires to insinuate the scientific knowledge through practical demonstrations among the people.
TS and its members do not believe in any religions, caste and creed. They all are secular and atheist in their day to day activities. By personal example of not putting on any of the religious or caste symbols and by not taking the holy dips in the sacred ponds or rivers and by not paying any pilgrimages to the holy temples and by not indulging in any sort of futile worship of the deities, they persuade the ignorant masses to get rid of all such impediments and real hurdles in the way of progress and mental freedom. TS members do not recite any mantras and religious prayers.
TS participates in all the democratic and such other functions organized by any progressive and democratic institution on the political, social and economical problems confronting the society. This is done with a comprehensive view so that the efforts to ascertain and establish economic, social and political equality can be advanced and directed on the right path of atheism and rationalism and there should not be any deviations or side tracking on these issues of paramount significance. TS believes that literature plus practical field work in the masses boosted up with the political activities, can yield the cherished substantial results. TS is an ardent and enthusiastic exponent and champion of the idea that in order to march towards post – religions society, it is all the more important that the common people must be approached with the novel scientific philosophy of atheism, rationalism humanism, they must be constantly guided in solving their problems with scientific attitude and they must be un- interruptingly assured about that their true emancipation and genuine deliverance rests not with the religion but with the spirit of free inquiry and atheism. It is only through this tedious and continuous process of educating the people we can capture our goals.
TS considers that all the superstitions and religious dogmas are the outcome and bye-product of fear and ignorance of the causes of many natural phenomena taking place in this vast and boundless universe. Ignorance can be dispelled through education i.e. scientific education. Education can be imparted through well organized set up established for the purpose. For all this monetary funds and other facilities are also required. So in order to impart true scientific education and knowledge to the people for exterminating the superstitions and such other morbid social practices ; we should strive to harness all such facilities from all the quarters. We must educate the people to raise the resources for providing them with all the pre-requests of preliminary basic education and the bare minimum requirements of life. So that they can live and learn. For this purpose a close rapport is essential to be maintained between the people and all our organizations through out the world.
It goes to the credit of TS alone to acquaint the common people with the atheism and rationalism as the way of life. It will not be an exaggeration that even the veteran democratic and progressive institutions of the intelligent of Punjab and the Communist movement in the state also cannot legtunate claim the match with the achievements of the TS on the fronts of popularizing atheistic, scientific and rationalistic outlook. TS can honestly be proud of its accomplishments for forging dedicated and committed members, sympathizers and supporters of these noble convictions in every nook and corner of the state. To an extent TS has succeeded in creating secular view point among the people, a secular view point impued with scientific knowledge and temperament.
TS is determined to march ahead to uphold the cause of atheism, rationalism and humanism. TS is hopeful to for see the outgrowth and development of one single common world plat form of all the atheists, rationalists, humanists, radical humanists, free thinkers etc. in the very near future.