Vinoba Bhave – (1895-1982)
Vinoba Bhave is an Indian spiritual leader who advocated non-violence and fought for the human rights. He is well known for his Bhoodan Andolan scheme. He is called as Acharya and considered as the National Teacher of India. He was born on 11th September 1895 in Gagode Village in Colaba District of Maharashtra. He belonged to a very pious family and was brought up in Baroda.
He read Bhagavad Gita, Mahabharat and Ramayan at his very early age. Naraharishumbhurao Bhave and Rukmini Devi are his parents. He had two brothers Balkoba Bhave and Shivaji Bhave. He and his two brothers remained bachelors throughout their life and dedicated their life to social works. He worked with Mahatma Gandhi in Indian Independence Movement. He was imprisoned in 1932 by the British government for his freedom fighting. Gandhi chose him as the individual Satyagrahi in 1940. He also took part in Quit India Movement.
Vinoba Bhave had a broad outlook and observed the life of an average Indian living in a village. He started Bhoodan movement on 18th April 1951 at Pochampally. He hallmarks of his philosophy are non-violence and compassion. He established six Ashrams, Samanvay Ashram at Bodhgaya Bihar, Bramh Vidya Mandir Paunar Sewagram at Maharashtra, Prasthan Ashram at Pathankot, Punjab, Visarjan Ashram at Indore Madhya Pradesh, Maitri Ashram at Sino-India border in Assam and Vallabh Niketan at Bangalore in Karnataka.
He had created many literary works that include The Essence of Quran, The Essence of Christian teachings, Thoughts on Education, Swarajya Sastra, etc. He started land donation movement in 1955 and took land donations from the rich people and offered it to the poor. He died on 15th November 1982. His funeral was attended by the then Prime Minister of India Indira Gandhi. He received Ramon Magsaysay Award for Community Leadership in 1958 and Bharat Ratna award posthumously in 1983. Vinoba Bhave University located in Hazaribagh district in the State of Jharkhand is named after him.