Touching tribute to Devendra Swarupji at Dr Ambedkar International Centre in New Delhi by eminent personalities, scholars and his admirers
New Delhi: “Devendra Swarupji was a ‘gyan sadhak’. Association of such souls is always enlightening and educating. His contribution in the ideological battle has been commendable. More such sadhaks are direly needed today. Continuing his ‘gyan sadhana’ will be the best tribute to him,” said RSS Sarsanghachalak Shri Mohan Bhagwat, while paying tribute to veteran RSS thinker, ideologue, historian and former editor of ‘Panchjanya’ Devendra Swarupji who had passed away on January 14, 2019 at All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS). As per his desire, his body was donated to Vardhman Mahavir Medical College for medical research through Dadhichi Deh Dan Samiti on January 15.
A view of the eminent gathering during the condolence meeting in Delhi
Vice President of India Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu, Union Home Minister Shri Rajnath Singh, Governor of Gujarat Prof OP Kohli, senior journalist and Chairman of Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts Shri Ram Bahadur Rai and international vice president of Vishwa Hindu Parishad Shri Champat Rai also paid their tribute at the condolence meeting held at Dr Ambedkar International Centre on January 21. RSS Sahsarkaryavah Dr Krishna Gopal and scores of eminent personalities were also present on the occasion.
Shri Mohan Bhagwat further said Devendraji never expected anything for himself and always thought for larger interest of the society and nation. “He served the nation like a sage. Whatever he wanted to convey he conveyed without hesitation through personal meetings, message or over phone. He was straightforward and conveyed in clear terms whatever he liked. He was very soft to others but tough to himself. What else is expected from an ideal swayamsevak,” Shri Bhagwat added. He said Devendra ji was habitual of collecting cleansing evidences on every topic before writing or speaking. “He lived for the society and thought for betterment of the society after death also by donating his body to the medical college,” he added.
Sarsanghachalak Shri Mohan Bhagwat addressing the condolence meeting in New Delhi. Others on dais from left are Shri Mahesh Sharma, Shri Champat Rai, Shri Rajnath Singh, Shri OP Kohli, Shri Ram Bahadur Rai and Shri Rohit Agrawal
Shri Rajnath Singh said the books and articles written by Devendra are reference material for the researchers, as his work is based on the strong evidences. “He spent lot of time in the National Archives to gather evidences and rare documents to support his arguments. I used to read his column in Panchjanya, which was very enlightening, educating and stirring. His was a unique personality. He was a yogi who did ‘gyan daan, jeevan daan’ and even the ‘shareer daan’ after his death. He lived an inspiring life which was simple but meaningful. He is not with us in physical form, but will live in the ‘word form’ for years to come,” the Union Home Minister said.
Vice President Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu paying tribtue to Devendra Swarupji
Prof OP Kohli, who has been his neighbour for years in Sahayog Apartment of Mayur Vihar in Delhi, said the nation has lost a treasure. “He used to repeatedly refer ‘Hind Swaraj’ of Gandhiji and wanted changes in the country according to ‘Hind Swaraj’. He was against the left and anti-national ideologies and gathered evidences to counter the baseless arguments of such idelogies. His own library had thousands of books and he read every book. While reading the books he used to mark certain lines which were useful to him on various subjects,” he added. Recalling his association with Devendra in the University of Delhi Prof Kohli said he played a key role in the formation of the National Democratic Teachers Front, a nationalist organisation of DU teachers. “We fought for the teachers cause but never boycotted the examinations. He could have achieved much for him, but never did. His departure has really created a vacuum,” Shri Kohli added.
Shri Champat Rai recalled Devendra ji’s association with Shri Ram Janmabhoomi movement and how the gathered evidences in support of Shri Ram Janmabhoomi and joined the dialogue process with the Muslims. “Shri Ram Janmabhoomi movement began in 1984 and whenever Ashok Singhalji wanted any information and document he approached Devendraji. I visited his house a number of times to gather information. His memory was so sharp that he provided the information quickly. Basically, the evidences gathered by Devendraji and Swarajya Prakash Guptji supported the Hindu cause during the dialogue process with the Muslims, during our case in the Allahabad High court and now the same documents and evidences are before the Supreme Court in our support for the temple,” Shri Champat Rai added.
Shri Ram Bahadur Rai announced to continue the ‘gyan sadhana’ of Devendraji through the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts. He said on March 30, every year, the IGNCA would organise Devendra Swarup Memorial Lecture and would also start a fellowship up to Rs 50,000 per month for the researchers who contribute in finishing the unfinished work of Devendra ji.
Shri Harsh Malhotra from Dadhichi Deh Dan Samiti particularly recalled how Devendra enrolled himself for body donation after the demise of Nanaji. Shri Rohit Agrawal, son of Devendraji, said his family was not limited to his children alone, but he maintained a large family, which include all those who came in his contact and became his admirer. Condolence messages from President of India Shri Ram Nath Kovind, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi and Governor of Goa Smt Mridula Sinha were read out at the condolence meeting.