Vinayak Narahari 'Vinoba' Bhave was an ardent follower of Mahatma Gandhi and non-violence. He was often referred to as Acharya Vinoba Bhave. Born on 11 September 1895, he is popularly known for the Bhoodan Movement. People in India consider him as the spiritual successor of Mahatma Gandhi. He had also translated the Geeta into the Marathi language and named it as Geetai.
On his birth anniversary, i.e., on 11 September 2020, we are here to tell you some lesser-known facts about him.
1. Vinoba Bhave was born as Vinayaka Narahari to parents Rukmini Devi and Narahari Shambhu Rao in a small village called Gagoji, in the Konkan region of Maharashtra.
2. Vinayaka who was affectionately called Vinya was the eldest of the five siblings. He had three younger brothers and one sister.
3. His grandfather brought up Vinayaka. He was deeply influenced by his mother who hailed from Karnataka. It was due to his mother, he was fond of reading Geeta.
4. In 1918, while he was going to appear for his intermediate exam in Bombay, he threw his books in the fire after going through an article written by Mahatma Gandhi.
5. After this, he wrote a letter to Mahatma Gandhi and after exchanging a few letters, Vinoba Bhave received an invitation from Mahatma Gandhi to participate in a personal meeting in Kochrab Assam in Ahmedabad.
6. Subsequently, Vinayaka actively participated in several activities in the Ashram such as teaching, spinning, studying and improving the lives of the community. He
7. On 8 April 1921, Bhave went to Wardha to take the charge of the Ashram as per the order of Mahatma Gandhi.
8. In 1923, he started publishing Maharashtra Dharma, a monthly magazine that consisted of the teachings of Upnishads. Soon the magazine became weekly and continued for three years.
9. During the 1920s and 1930s, Bhave was arrested several times for participating in a non-violence resistance against the British Raj. He was also imprisoned in jail for five years during the 1940s. While he was in jail, he utilised his time in reading and writing.
10. He often gave talks on Geeta while he stayed in one of the huts of Sabarmati Ashram. The hut is known as 'Vinoba Kutir'.'
11. In 1940, Mahatma Gandhi chose him as the 'First Individual Satyagrahi' against the British Raj in India.
12. Bhave also played a key role in the Quit India Movement and his celibacy was widely appreciated by Mahatma Gandhi. Bhave wanted to follow Brahmacharya throughout his life and dedicate his life to the freedom struggle and religious work.
13. It was on 15 November 1982, when Vinoba Bhave passed away.