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Puri Basanta Kumari Bidhabasram
Basanta Kumari Bidhabasram (B.K.B.A) is located at Puri in a building with a generous amount of land which was donated to Saroj Nalini Dutt Memorial Association (S.N.D.M.A) by Lady Basanta Kumari Chatterjee in 1930. From the very beginning the objective of the Ashram was to provide appropriate shelter to the needy and helpless widows as well as young destitute girls.
The residents of the Ashram are supposed to be trained in various skills like weaving, tailoring, embroidery and Pipli work. With the affiliation from S.N.D.M.A, theAshram is supposed to run a two-year certificate course on the making of Khesh, Pipli Embroidery, etc. The Country Women Association of India (CWAI) runs a Balwadi Class and a Child Care Center. The Executive Committee of S.N.D.M.A, a few years ago planned to build an Old Age Home for senior citizens. To implement this project the executive body of S.N.D.M.A visited the Ashram in December 2007 when various plans were discussed with the then Local Committee. An amount of Rs. 10,000/- was disbursed to Local Committee to start the project, initially to accommodate at least four persons in the Home. Consequently, the building of the Ashram was partially repaired. Since 2006 the other building ‘Mabhoi’ was let out which brought some revenues to be utilized for running the Ashram.
Unfortunately, for the last 4 years the Local Committee Secretary has not taken any particular interest towards the running of the Ashram. Due to this the Ashram is now almost in ruins and hardly any activity takes place except the Balwadi, run by C.W.A.I. During the past few years Committee Members of S.N.D.M.A have visited the place several times to discuss the problems with the intention of re-activating the functions of the Ashram. Due to a lack of cooperation from the Local Committee the intentions remained unfulfilled.
On July 24, 2010, the President, Vice President and the Secretary of S.N.D.M.A along with a family member of Lady Chatterjee arrived at Puri to discuss with the Local Secretary and his Committee Members the modalities of restoring the Bidhabashram to its past glory. But despite informing them at least a month before the proposed meeting, no one turned up on the appointed date. As a result the President of S.N.D.M.A had to call a special meeting and formed a new Local Committee where the Collector of Puri, Shri S C Satapathy, was appointed as Chairperson, while Ms. Bijaylakshmi Mohanty was appointed as the Secretary and Shri Shiv Prasad Mishra as the Joint Secretary.
The purpose of the new Local Executive Body is only to resuscitate the unit and make it function as before.