A little bit of history
#SrijanTalks has been running since 04 January 2016. We started with a lecture by Sanjeev Sanyal on “The Need for Rewriting Indian History” and had imagined that we would do a roadshow of his talks. Little did we imagine that #SrijanTalks would expand into a large Indic platform for resetting our narratives — “Our Histories, Our Stories, Our Heroes — from Our Perspectives”.
Where are we now
The frequency of #SrijanTalks in Delhi is increasing; we’re now conducting 2-3 talks each month. In addition, with some volunteers joining in from Bangalore, a formal chapter is possibly starting in that city with atleast one additional talk each month.
So far, we’ve carried out all our work with just two full-time employees and a lot of volunteers (sometimes on a small stipend or honourarium), and with funds sourced internally via the trustees. Last year we spent about Rs.11-12 Lakhs in running #SrijanTalks, covering expenses of our two full-time employees, hiring auditoriums, paying for flights and hotel stay for our outstation speakers, stipends for interns, chai-snacks during our talks, designing invitation cards, and running our social media activities.
We’ve hosted talks on history, archaeology, economics, social studies, politics, spirituality, Hinduism, Hindu society, threat of changing demographics, and so on, via Indians living all around the world.
Budgets and projects going forward
We anticipate a spend of an estimated 25L to 30L in 2018-2019, owing to a) the increase in number of talks in Delhi, and an expansion into Bangalore, and b) a necessary scaling up of our camera and editing team. In addition, we want to add an excellent writer, perhaps an editor, for the portals such as www.indictales.com and www.wayofdharma.com which get fed by #SrijanTalks in ways such as small snippets. We also intend to launch a TED like tech platform (of course leaner and bootstrapped) for showcasing all #SrijanTalks.
In addition, we’re taking up a project of creating an ‘Indian Wiki’, to challenge the largely leftist history documented in Wikipedia.org. We’re calling this IndicWiki.org. Speakers at #SrijanTalks will naturally become contributors for this platform to enable generating the initial momentum for the platform. We need to co-ordinate this effort via an internal editor and writer.
We also believe we need to get some retainer legal advisory/support available to us. The current Indian ecosystem which we’re challenging (in our own, perhaps small way) does not support Freedom of Expression, however much they may claim so. We feel we need some retainer legal cover from Left-Marxist and Christo-Islamist motivated ideologues to legally challenge us. We need funds for this.
Request for individual donations and institutional grants
A spend of Rs.25L and more, is currently beyond our internal ability to fund. Hence, we’re reaching out now for individual contributors and institutional donors to help us move forward in our journey of changing and resetting our national narratives.
Currently, we can only accept donations from Indian donors via Indian bank accounts. Our sister arm in the US is under process. Once done we will get a 501(3c) compliant sister non-profit in the US as well. We’ve applied for a grant of FCRA status for Srijan Foundation in India. This exercise is estimated to complete by end of 2018. Once done, we will be able to route funds from Srijan Foundation USA to Srijan Foundation India.