Ramesh Bhaiya Born: April 20, 1956
Vimla Bahan Born: April 15, 1959
Ramesh Bhaiya and Vimla Bahan are synonym to Gram Seva in Shahajanpur in Uttar Pradesh.
To uplift and empower the rural people of a neglected and highly crime-infested village Bartara, the couple established the Vinoba Seva Ashram in 1980 exemplifying the thought - andhkar ko na dhikkarein, accha hai ek deep jalayein (It is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness). Ramesh Bhaiya and Vimla Bahan have laid emphasis on development of Education, Healthcare, Income Generation, Goseva and Sustainable Agriculture involving around 1100 karyakartas spread across the 32 districts of Uttar Pradesh successfully to encourage self reliance by promoting khadi for employment generation.
Over 5800 women have been empowered through sericulture and carpet weaving projects. 6000 self help groups are involved in various entrepreneurial activities. Women of 14 districts of Uttar Pradesh have been educated on their legal and land rights.
The Goseva initiative is quite impressive working towards the rescue and rehabilitation of ill-treated cows.
An effort has been made to create an environment in which each villager and each Ashramite recognizes each other as part of the family.
Ramesh Bhaiya's and Smt Vimla Bahan's new world of swadeshi in Bartara and surrounding areas is indeed noteworthy.