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The Golf Jaunt


The game of golf is widely regarded as a great way to develop important business relationships since times immemorial. Isha Vidya, the rural educational arm of Isha Foundation, which is founded by Sadhguru, thus, organized a golf event where business leaders and professional golfers played a special game of golf with Sadhguru at Willingdon Sports Club, Mumbai. Sadhguru, is a contemporary Guru, rooted as strongly in mundane and pragmatic matters as he is in inner experience and wisdom.

To begin with, The Isha ‘Make a Life’ Golf Jaunt took place to rally commitment and support for raising the level of education and literacy in rural India. It relies on the support of volunteers and donors. The game that hosted 84 participants saw a group of 100 illustrious people from the business world in India and abroad including Harsh Mariwala (Chariman – Marico), Vijay Chauhan (CMD – Parle Products), Atul Laul (President – Reliance Industries Ltd), Rajesh Batra (Chairman – Proline Apparels) Shashi Shetty (MD – All Cargo Logistics), Sidharth Punshi (MD – JP Morgan India Pvt Ltd) and Harish Thawani (Chairman – Nimbus Communication) among others. The tournament followed the ‘four-ball’ format with stable-ford scoring. Playing golf gives you undivided contact with a business associate for 4-5 hours and allows you to make and retain relationships. Business is built on relationships. There is practically no other place where you can get 4-5 hours of a senior executive’s time in one day.

Isha Vidhya, a non-profit organisation founded in 2006 is working to help disadvantaged children to realise their full potential. They run nine rural schools in South India with 6,415 children. Through critical interventions in 56 rural government schools in Tamil Nadu and 460 Govt. Schools in Andhra Pradhesh, it benefits an additional 72,000 children. Its mission is to establish English-medium, computer-based schools in rural India and bridge the gap between urban and rural education standards.

Golf is all about poise and concentration. It is also a great way to network with successful corporate executives. While learning the sport, a novice is made to shadow-practice their stance and swing under the watchful eyes of an instructor. Similarly, in the wp domain, while working out investments strategies or projects to be involved in, we sometimes look up to methods and areas corporate houses are involved in or fill in the spaces in, where they haven’t made a mark yet. While speaking to some of the people in authority they expressed the need for social work to be done without a mandate and certainly no policing. The desire to do good social work has to come from internal compassion not external monetary compulsions. The awareness amongst masses needs to increase as their support in social responsibility will make a large difference.

With various initiatives taken, one should know that there is a fine line between being educated and literate. While at the event, I happened to be standing next to a group of women chattering and discussing issues. Just as one was about to litter, a friend said, “Don’t litter, or else Modi will have to come with a broom to clean that up, Swach Bharat is his aim after all”, to that the immediate reply comes, “ No worries, he’s too busy travelling various countries to worry about what is happening in his own country.”

Another truly remarkable and unforgettable experience!