New Life for India Movement

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New Life for India Movement is an organization started in 1968, whose aim aim is to create an awareness in Indian youth of right citizenship, right values and right means of livelihood.

The movement was started under the leadership of Mrs. Radha Burnier by her, Achyut Patwardhan and Nilakanta Sri Ram. It is said that this was a response to a request of J. Krishnamurti, who was appalled at the conditions prevailing in India at that time.[1]

International President of the Theosophical Society, N. Sri Ram, reports in his Presidential Address of 1968 the following:

Mrs. Burnier writes at some length of a movement recently started in Madras [now Chennai] under the title, "New Life for India," the aim of which is to promote in public and private life a consciousness of the principles which should govern the conduct of an Indian in relation to his fellow citizens, surroundings, and neighbors, in fact, the ancient idea of Dharma, translated into terms of practical conduct and social values. A number of representatives of different groups and organizations, including Mrs. Burnier herself and other Theosophists, have been co-operating in this endeavoor, which is wholly non-political and has already met with a measure of response, exemplified by the fact that the Governor of Madras, Sardar Ujjal Singh, came to its first public meeting in Septermber last to inaugurate it.

Much of Dr. Annie Besant's work for India was aimed at the rehabilitation of India on a moral and spiritual basis, and she had great hopes for the revival of India's greatness, which she said would lie not in fight for conquest, for a place of power, or in the political arena, but in "keeping alight the torch of Spirit amid the fogs and storms of increasing materialism". Mrs. Burnier recalls these words, so that the Indian Theosophists at least may do all they can towards realizing the hope expressed by Dr. Besant.[2]

The Movement has a journal entitled Wake Up India. It is published quarterly by the Theosophical Society in March, June, September and December, "focusing attention on current issues of social and ethical relevance and questions touching public conscience."[3]


  1. Pedro Oliveira, in a personal communication.
  2. N. Sri Ram, "Presidential Address," The Theosophist vol 90:issue 4 (January, 1969), 217.
  3. See Wake Up India]