Leading a quiet but relentless revolution, Megha Vijaywargia of the philanthropic People’s Group in Bhopal is eliminating seemingly insurmountable health and education inequities in the heart of India.
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.Chinese Proverb
Nothing sums up the journey of Megha Vijaywargia better than the aforementioned adage. In a nation where the birth of a girl child is still grieved, Megha Vijaywargia is someone who stands forth as an illustrious example of what a woman can achieve, if she puts her mind to it. She also exemplifies the power of private endeavour in making a difference to public health and education – arguably the most crucial, yet the most wanting sectors of the Indian economy.
The story of Megha Vijaywargia is not separate from the institutions she has nurtured and leads. It is a story worth drawing inspiration from, worth emulating, and most of all, worth celebrating.
Shattering Barriers — People’s Group and Megha Vijaywargia
While the term “woman of substance” sounds clichéd particularly since it is applied to almost all successful women, it is extremely apt in Megha Vijaywargia’s case. Professional, philanthropist, entrepreneur, and present Director of the People’s Group in Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh), Megha Vijaywargia is the quintessential multi-tasker, juggling several responsibilities, discharging them all with characteristic élan.
After completing her Masters degree from Bhopal, Megha Vijaywargia moved to the United States where she worked for nearly a decade, gaining extensive experience in the area of finance. However, driven by a deep altruistic desire, she returned to India where she committed herself to improving and expanding People’s Group – an umbrella body for more than 16 educational Institutions and hospitals. It was Mr. Suresh Vijaywargia who had founded the People’s Group, beginning with the establishment of a charitable, 100-bed hospital named People’s General Hospital in the old locality of Bhopal. Subsequently, Mr. Suresh Vijaywargia set up the Sarvajanik Jankalyan Parmarthik Nyas, a charitable & non-profitable Public Trust to promote People’s Group. With the passage of time, this became an educational centre providing professional courses in medicine, pharmacy, nursing, engineering, and hotel management, among others. These institutions were collectively conferred the status of a university in 2011.
Institutions under the People’s University Umbrella
- People’s College of Medical Sciences & RC
- People’s College of Dental Sciences & RC
- People’s Dental Academy
- People’s College of Nursing and Research
- School of Research & Technology
- School of Pharmacy & Research
- People’s Institute of Hotel Management CT & AN
- People’s Institute of Management & Research
- People’s College of Paramedical Sciences
- Centre for Scientific Research & Development
- University Teaching Department
It was under the leadership of Megha Vijaywargia that People’s University got NAAC (National Assessment and Accreditation Council) Accreditation in 2018. She has also actively spearheaded the growth of the University, making provisions for training, innovation, research, and for quality education to be imparted. As of now, People’s University offers a gamut of professional undergraduate and postgraduate courses that include, MBBS, MD/MS, BDS (Dental Surgery), MDS, B.Sc., M.Sc. in Nursing, B. Pharma, M. Pharm, UG & PG Diploma in Hotel Management, B.Tech, and M.Tech, among others. Given the enormous gap between the demand for and dearth of colleges and universities offering professional courses in the country, People’s University is one institution bridging the gap, imparting vocational training and creating job market-ready candidates.
Significantly, Megha Vijaywargia’s efforts in shaping People’s University into a great temple of learning have been widely acknowledged, as illustrated by the numerous awards and recognition earned by it. People’s University of Bhopal has had the unique distinction of being the first in central India to be recognized by the Department of Scientific & Industrial Research, Ministry of Science and Technology (SIRO), Government of India. The university has also been awarded with the prestigious India’s Quality Education Award by Corporate Council for Leadership and Awareness (CCLA) at the Progressive India Conclave, 2018. The People’s College of Medical Sciences and Research Centre, under People’s University, secured the 7th position in the Emerging Colleges Rank conducted by India Today in 2017. Besides these honours, the Research wing of the university, namely the Centre of Research and Development (CSRD) – inaugurated by then President of India Mrs. Pratibha Patil – conducts cutting-edge research in life science and biomedical science.
People’s University — Awards & Distinctions
- First University in central India to be recognized by the Department of Scientific & Industrial Research, Ministry of Science and Technology (SIRO), Government of India
- Awarded the prestigious India’s Quality Education Award by Corporate Council for Leadership and Awareness (CCLA) at the Progressive India Conclave, 2018
- People’s College of Medical Sciences and Research Centre ranked 7th in Emerging Colleges Study conducted by India Today in 2017
Watch: How People’s University is advancing the cause of skill-based education
Nurturing Humanity through her Endeavours
Interestingly, the People’s Group kick-started its journey with the motto “Nurturing Humanity through Health and Educational Excellence”. Through her initiatives and actions, Megha Vijaywargia has truly abided by this noble objective.
To begin with, she makes sure that underprivileged students, particularly from rural areas, are granted scholarships and partial fee waivers, so they have an equal opportunity to study and grow. She has also set up a “People’s Ladies’ Club”, a social welfare organization dedicated to serving marginalized groups by fulfilling their basic needs and empowering them with employable skills. The club is also engaged in environmental conservation. An impassioned philanthropist, Megha Vijaywargia has adopted a village named “Ratua” near Bhopal where healthcare amenities are continuously monitored, and the rural population is taken care of.
With a well-equipped Intensive Care Unit, emergency services, and trauma care, People’s Hospital has grown exponentially since its establishment. Additionally, under Megha Vijaywargia’s management, the poorest of the poor are able to access healthcare through mobile medical services organized in the vicinity of the hospital as well as through free medical and dental camps set up in rural, remote areas.
For all her magnanimity, Megha Vijaywargia is an extraordinary entrepreneur driven by an ambition to put People’s Group on the global map.
Remarkably spirited, industrious and enterprising, she well has it in her to achieve the same. Megha Vijaywargia has won several awards which include the International award for “Rising Entrepreneur of the Year 2012” at Dubai and the “Women Entrepreneurship Award 2014” from the Bhopal Cancer Research Welfare Association.
Megha Vijaywargia — Individual Accolades
- International award for “Rising Entrepreneur of the Year 2012” at Dubai
- “Women Entrepreneurship Award 2014” from the Bhopal Cancer Research Welfare Association
Feats of Extraordinary Dedication
When the COVID-19 pandemic initially broke out, Megha Vijaywargia made sure that People’s Hospital in Bhopal proactively dedicated hospital beds to help ease the situation. Subsequently, People’s Hospital was temporarily turned into a COVID-19 hospital, delivering quality medical care to thousands of COVID-19 patients. Thus, at a time when Megha Vijaywargia’s commitment to serve people was arguably put to the test, she came forward with alacrity, proving that her dedication is no ordinary dedication.
We live in an era in which stories of corruption, avarice, deceit, and falsehood abound. A story that fills one with warmth and inspiration is indeed rarer than most of us would like to think. This is a time, in other words, when people who inspire like Megha Vijaywargia are increasingly becoming uncommon. Uncommon enough to make us want to wish: may her tribe increase!