Mahavir Mandal was the endeavor of few children in Azimganj in 1977. There was a Chaturmas of Sri Pujya sri Jin Chandra Suri in Azimganj in he year 1977. Few of the children decided to present him a gift.They gathered and start thinking of a gift. Sri Pujya ji was learning Bengali language at that point of time. Late Kali Prasad Bhattacharya, Asst. Head Master of RBSB High school was teaching him the said language. The boys and girls together decided to gift him a Bengali- English dictionary that cost them Rs. 18/ only. It looks little amount but it was a big amount for those children. However, they could collect some Rs. 15-16. Srimati Bhanumati Bachchhawat encouraged the children and paid the rest of the amount. The children gathered to gift the dictionary founded an organization called Mahavir Bal Mandal. Later on the word "Bal" was removed and the name of the organization became "Mahavir Mandal".
I feel proud of myself, even today, as I. Jyoti Kothari was the founder secretary of Mahavir Mandal. Dilip Chhajed was the first President of the same. I was 14 at that time and Dilip was 16. We were the eldest male members. My sister Sujata Kothari and Anita Bachchhawat, daughter of Smt. Bhanumati were among elder female members. None of the members were adult at that time.
Smt. Bhanumati Bachchhawat encouraged them by providing a room in her residence that was used as office of the said org. Later on, Mahavir Mandal was provided with a room in "Bada Upasra" at Sri Neminath temple.
Mahavir Mandal worked very well. We arranged for games and sports, Physical raining, daily coaching of the younger students and organized musical nights (Bhajan sandhya). Mahavir Mandal had started and run music school and sewing schools. It had organized several exhibitions and multifarious functions. The organization had helped the tourists (Yatri) coming for the purpose of pilgrimage. They also organize "Puja" and cleaning in the temples. A "Book Bank" and a library was also established in the office premises. Mahavir Mandal have provided a "Tube well" in Rambagh Dadabadi which is still working there.
Sunil Churoria and Bikas Chhajed also adorn the chair as secretary of Mahavir Mandal. Surprisingly, we three, me, Jyoti Kothari is now working as secretary, Jaipur Khartar Gachchh Sangh; Sunil as secretary Azimganj Sri Sangh and Bikas as secretary, Murshidabad Sangh, Kolkata.
Later on, probably in 1980, Mahavir Mandal was expanded and a new branch was opened in Jiaganj.
(N.B. Jyoti Kothari is proprietor of Vardhaman Gems, Jaipur, representing Centuries Old Tradition of Excellence in Gems and Jewelry. He is a Non-resident Azimganjite.)