Academy of Gandhian Studies (AGS) was established in the year 1976 as a society under the Act XXI of 1860, with the registered number 203 with renowned Gandhian follwers and Freedom Fighters, Sri.Prabhakarji, Sri.K.S.Acharyulu, Sri.Radhakrishna, Sri.Kodati Narayana Rao, Sri.M.S.Rajalingam, Sri.M.L.Narasimha Rao and Sri.G.Sivarama Murthy in promoting global peace, social harmony and sustainable development.
AGS has not merely participated, but actively contributed to global dialogues such as the Earth Summit (Rio 1992), the World Summit Social Development (Copenhagen 1995), and the second World Peace Conference (The Hague 1999).
Academy of Gandhian studies (AGS), an apex level NGO facilitating for the past thirty years is committed to end injustice, inequality and poverty through ‘Satya, Ahimsa and Dharma’. It is well-established center for Training, Research and Social Action. The key areas of intervention during the last three decades include peace initiatives, programmes for gender equity in six states, environmental awareness campaigns and networking at district levels in three states, youth for development and in the recent past has more focused on HIV/AIDS, Trafficking in women and children, Disaster management and response and natural resource management. The Academy currently provides the needed leadership to a network of 20 organizations spread across ten districts and working against the contemporary issue of trafficking in children and women in Andhra Pradesh.
Inception of AGS:
The Academy of Gandhian Studies was founded in 1976 at the initiative of its Founder Chairman Sri. Prabhakarji adopted son of Mahatma Gandhi and a close associate of Acharya Vinoba Bhave, along with Sri. K.S. Acharyulu, Sri. Kodati Narayana Rao, Sri. Damodar Pangrekar, Sri. K.S. Radhakrishna and Sri. G. Sivaramamurthy, all of whom had been a part of India’s freedom movement.
Our Guiding Philosophy:
The key words that defined development to us are ‘Antyodaya’ (the awakening of marginalized people), Education (in values and relationships), Grama Swaraj (a community approach of individual in society) and Satyagraha (to dissent and struggle for justice). As the transformation was to take place in this framework, non-violence automatically becomes the sheet anchor of our struggle.
Contribution to the promotion of a democratic social order wherein all the citizens enjoy a sense of social justice and economic well being without any form of discrimination, striving for sustainable development, social harmony and universal peace.
Promotion of interaction between Gandhian thinkers and professional groups so as to examine, explore and adapt the application of Gandhian tenets in resolving the problems of contemporary society, and promoting harmony and sustainable development.
AGS has not merely participated, but actively contributed to global dialogues such as the Earth Summit (Rio 1992), the World Summit Social Development (Copenhagen 1995), and preparing for the second World Peace Conference (The Hague 1999).
· Promotion of grass-root democracy in order to sustain the gravity of governance firmly in the society, thus enhancing transparency.
· Promotion of responsible and responsive citizenship, so as to advance the cause of universal human rights.
· Exploration, interpretation, examination and application of Gandhian thought in resolving contemporary problems of human society.
· Appraise the process of social transformation at the level of communities to enhance self-reliance.
· Promotion of sustainable social development in tune with the concept of trusteeship.
· Spread the universal values of truth, non-violence, reconciliation, peaceful co-existence, transcending partisan interests and sectarian identities, in consonance with VASUDAIKA KUTUMBAKAM – the universal family of humanity.
AGS has been striving to adopt a MISSION MODE stirring people and communities to create a grass root movement, and networking of peoples participatory Organisations. It spurs peoples' initiatives and energies, in partnership with other institutions.
The canvas of AGS encompasses grass-root communities focusing on action, to the global village, with focus on universal concerns.
SPAN OF PROGRAMMES
The mission and objectives of the Academy are fulfilled through clusters of programmes. No programme is seen in isolation, as falling into an exclusive category; for every project is pursued as multi-pronged, and trans-disciplinary in nature.
STUDY, RESEARCH AND ACTION
Study, research and action are pursued in an integrated manner focusing on the process, and substance of social development. Citizens' environmental status report of A.P.1990 – the first of its kind in India best illustrates the approach of the Academy.
THREE DECADES OF FULFILMENT
· The first two decades have seen the phases of evolution and expansion if not consolidation. Consolidation and stabilization have not been pursued as they can’t be seen an ‘virtues’ in a dynamic social, political-economic environment.
· A broad-based network of peoples' institutions has remained and continues to be its strength.
· The programmes have moved on two parallel streams viz.; the Ecological and the Sociological within an overarching Gandhian frame, matching the vision and objectives of the Academy.
· The ecological stream encompassed the Environmental Status Report 1990, Environmental Education, Environmental issues of Krishna river basin, Restoration of Irrigation Tanks, Organic farming and related issues, and participation in the Earth summit.
· The sociological stream encompassed Gandhi to schools, political freedom, democratic sustainable development, social harmony, child labour and women in development, and participation in the World Summit on Social Development.