Students who are future leaders, become very vibrant and passionate about the social evil Corruption, as they are frustrated when they endure this, at the time of admission into colleges, for obtaining driver's license, passport etc,.
February 10th, was a full day of RTI Training sessions at various locations in Chennai, the first being conducted at the Queen Mary's College from 11am to 1pm. President of 5th Pillar, Mr. Vijay Anand and Director of Operations Mr. Subramanian, were accompanied by the international Journalist Mr. Rick Westhead of Toronto Star, a leading daily newspaper, to conduct an awareness campaign and RTI training session to the participating 80 students of the sociology department. Corruption, its root, causes and debilitating effects on society was explained in detail by Anand. He initiated a group interaction among the students by asking them, how much they paid to receive their driver's license. This question raised an interesting forum for discussion, were the students learned how much each one of them paid for obtaining their basic right. The students feel angry and helpless when they learn how they were cheated. He also mentioned about the cost of penalty for certain infarctions, so as to give a clear idea of their liabilities in a particular situation. Anand detailed about the functioning of the organization and how the coordinators in the office help the public to file RTI petitions. Students were encouraged to volunteer their time for the organization to propagate the message to the public.
An RTI training was conducted, were the students were actually taught how to write the petition for real life scenarios. This would equip them with the knowledge to write similar petitions in future for them as well as for their neighbours. The Journalist was very interested to learn about the kind of situations the student's face on a daily basis from the traffic violation fee, getting their mark list from the registrar's office and so on.
Students signed their name on the 30 feet Zero Rupee Banner to show their resistance against corruption. The Zero Rupee Note was distributed to all the participants, and they took a pledge to neither accept nor give bribe. The volunteers of our organization distributed the Zero Rupee Notes to all the students in the college in belief that we can reach the parents through the children who might be government officials too. Educating the younger generation about this social evil will reap a better future for the coming generation.