Hindu Seva Sangh (Sangh), born on October 23, 1983, to address the social challenges faced by the Hindu community, embarked on a series of programs to bring social relief and Pandit Rabindranath Maharaj (Pandit Robin) of Endeavour played a major role in this undertaking.
News of Pandit Robin’s passing on Sunday December 18, 2022, has prompted me to extend this special tribute to him by highlighting some of the programs he did on behalf of the Sangh. No stranger to Haripersad Harikissoon (Hariji), the founder and first President of the Sangh, Pandit Robin had his initial knowledge of Hindu dharma and music with the Endeavour Hindu Youth Organization and the Ramanand Kirtan Mandali respectively, both organizations initiated by Pandit Ashram, elder brother of Pandit Robin and Hariji beginning in the early 1970s.
By 1983 Pandit Robin was a blossoming pandit and Hariji approached him for his assistance in the Sangh’s seva programs and he happily agreed. The first program was a fund raising yagya to raise funds for Shashi Yoganand of Dass Trace, Enterprise to undergo an eye surgery. Pandit Robin officiated in the seven-night yagya and a sum of money was raised. Shashi proceeded to have the surgery which was successful. I was happy to see Sukhi, an uncle of Shashi at Pandit Robin’s funeral, a definite expression of gratitude by the family for the kindness done.
Another fundraising-yagya was arranged by the Sangh for Frank Gumansingh of south Trinidad. Again, Pandit Robin officiated, and a sum of money was raised to meet the cost of the surgery which was successfully executed
The Sangh was requested to raise money to meet the cost of surgery for Mahadaye of Penal who was critically ill. Her brother, Gopie Ramnanan, was a member of the Sangh. The Sangh intervened and sponsored another fund-raising yagya with Pandit Robin officiating. A sum of money was raised but the surgery was unsuccessful as the patient died on the operating table.
The Sangh raised funds to assist in the construction of mandirs. Both the California Mandir of San Ford East, Carlifornia and the Divine Life Society of Carlsen Field were beneficiaries of those fund rasing-yagyas officiated by Pandit Robin.
I distinctly recalled Pandit Robin officiating in a yagya sponsored by the Hindu Seva Sangh at the Children’s Home in Longdenville. A sum of money was raised and handed over to the manager of the Home.
Pandit Robin eagerly supported the youth program of Sangh. He encouraged the youths of the mandir to participate in these camps. The Sri Ram Mandir was also a venue for hosting camps and a weekly Shakha on Saturday evenings for several years.
The Sangh’s work resulted in a revival of Hindu dharma across the land. This Hindu awakening was felt in Moruga and Pandit Robin was at the forefront. He not only officiated in yagyas and family poojas but inspired the construction of a mandir on a parcel of land donated by Siewnarine Buchoon, a beloved jajman of Pandit Robin.
Friends of Harji hosted a special satsangh and book launch to mark the 77th birth anniversary of Hariji on August 08, 2022. Pandit Robin was approached to become part of this celebration. He not only embraced the program and hosted it but also paid glowing tribute to Hariji for his untiring service to dharma.
As one who lives in Endeavour and worked closely with the Sangh, I would like to conclude that had those charity yagyas not been held, the relevance of the Sangh might have been questioned. Pandit Robin could have directed the love offerings of his devotees to himself, but he did not. Instead, he directed them to give to the community, thus putting the latter above his personal welfare.
I join with members of the Sangh and the numerous devotees of Pandit Robin in saluting him for his invaluable contribution toward making the Hindu community better and stronger and particularly in the laying the foundation of the Hindu Seva Sangh, a platform that provided recognition to many though a few would continue to live in denial. Om Sadgati.