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The couples behind the ideaThe healthy relationship with neighbours always helps us to ease out many tensions and misunderstandings. It paves the way for troublefree and peaceful co-living in the community. But, in these days of rapid urbanisation, demanding work schedules, we don't have much time for domestic matters. We leave home early in the morning and get back only in late nights. And there is little scope for interaction with neighbours. In case of families living in apratments, the interaction is not all that frequent. It is pity that we live in the same locality or apartment without knowing families living around us. On the contrary if we get to know our neighbours well we can build up community spirit among our fellow residents, so that all neighbours can work together to everybody's benefit. Keeping these things in mind here is a day - International Good Neighbour Day. Some of the Hyderabadis celebrated the International Good Neighbour Day on May 20. But this was confined to small locality as only few people were involved in it. The day is celebrated on different dates in different countries. For instance in USA it is September 24 and in U.K. it is May 7. The day is meant for promoting a return to neighbourliness in the community.

Roses, the medium to propagte messageProving 'achhe padosi' (good neighbours) six couples from old city celebrated the Good Neighbours Day in Hyderabad. "If Martyr's Day is a proper and glorious tribute to the many members of the freedom movement, who sacrificed their lives to defend the country", I feel that as Indians, and Hyderabadis, we should also celebrate the Good Neighbours Day to keep the positive spirit of good neighbourliness on", said Mr. Praveen Jain, who was instrumental in initiating good neighbourly relations in his neighbourhood in Shalibabda. It is a day to acknowledge our relationship to our neighbours on our street, in our community and in the rest of the country, he added.

Mr. Praveen & Mrs. Sangeeta; Mr. Ashok & Mrs. Padma; Mr. Kishore & Mrs.Varsha; Mr. Nilesh & Mrs.Swapna; Mr.Kushal & Mrs.Kalpana; Mr.Manoj & Mrs.Rekha, all in their thirties, who have been celebrating each others wedding anniversaries for the past six years without break unitedly, now jumped on to community development. All the six couples unitedly appealed to people all around the state and country to plan ways to make future Neighbour Days festive, peaceful and neighbourly celebrations in their communities.

Mr&Mrs Praveen JainMr.Praveen says, he has already spent Rs.15000 trying to kick-start the Neighbour's Day in Hyderabad, which has largely been a one- man initiative. He is thinking of lining up sponsor for next year. He has one thing definitely on his mind to celebrate neighbour day differently. On May 20, 2002, the six couples will give away 12,000 free random kindness rose buds, one dozen per person to the first 1000 people in twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad. But, they will give those rosebuds on one condition, that you keep one stem for yourself and give the other to eleven people in the spirit of the day. When giving each person a rose, you have to introduce yourself and get to know someone new. "Anybody can initiate the Neighbourhood day by giving a rose to your neighbour as a gesture of friendship and love. This is a wonderful way to know your neighbours or get to know them better. The gift of flowers to the local community is to highlight the spirit of being a good neighbour and to encourage random kindness throughout the city", said Mr. Praveen Jain. Hope this small initiative of celebrating Good Neighbour Day, may just blossom into garden full of random kindness throughout the Andhra Pradesh state and hopefully the country and beyond.

Interested persons who wished to participate in the Neighbourhood Day celebration may contact Praveen Jain on Phone: 474 2713 Cell: 98480 11611.

- Mohan G Jagan
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