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Social reformer Pandurang Shastri Athavale dead

October 25, 2003 17:43 IST
Last Updated: October 25, 2003 18:50 IST

Well-known social reformer and Magsaysay awardee Pandurang Shastri Athavale passed away in Mumbai on Saturday, family sources said. He was 83.

A scholar, he was familiar with the Vedas, the Upanishads, logic and philosophy. He set up the Swadhyaya movement some time in the 1950s to bring about social transformation - moral, social and economic - through the values propagated in the Bhagvad Gita. [Swadhyaya literally means the discovery of the Self.]

Athavale's vision for the movement: "We shall create a society which is self-disciplined, has faith in God, is adventurous and brave, loves culture and the holy scriptures, is truly democratic and is filled with devotion."

Today, it has over five million followers whose influence is spread across over 75,000 villages and is a formidable force in Gujarat and Maharashtra.

Athavale also established several educational institutions and initiated steps to ensure social welfare and distribution of wealth.

In 1996, he was honoured with the Magsaysay award for community leadership. It was perhaps the first time that the spotlight was turned on Athavale who had till then been working silently among the masses.

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Number of User Comments: 40

Sub: dadaji

Dadaji can never dead, because he is living in the heart of 21st centurian youth and he must be transferred by us to the next ...

Posted by alpesh

Sub: krishna in the face of dada

dada is still in our heart ,his thoughts is in blood of millions and one day will be in heart of whole world.

Posted by gunjan parashar

Sub: Dadaji

Our Dadaji is with me now also. I fell about it Savalia family

Posted by nilisha savalia

Sub: i love u dada

dada, i know ur not in the world now but ur in the heart of all the swadhyayis. DADA i promise u that i will ...

Posted by pankaj agrawal

Sub: A great loss to humanity

This great soul came to earth to guise us, to sublimate our thought and uplifted the humanity to a great hight. This kind of soul ...

Posted by Archana Parsai


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