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About Mahatma Phule










An Introduction:
In India, Maharashtra a state with cultural heritage and is also land of social thinkers, social reforms and social revolutionaries who have not only molded and enriched all facets of life of Maharashtra but have also made singular contribution to growth and development of India .In this website of the great social reformer - Mahatma Phule, contemporary of KARL MARX, we have the "patria protesta" of the Indian social revolution and the first leader of peasants.
In those days there was a conflict between the rationalist and the orthodox. His period can, therefore, be a aptly described as the dawn of revolution in the history not only of Maharashtra but of the country as a whole in the various fields like Education, Caste Systems, Agriculture, Economics, Women and widow enlistment , Human Rights, Untouchable ,Social Equality.



MAHATMA JYOTIRAO GOVINDRAO PHULE:
occupies a unique position among the social reformers of Maharashtra in the nineteenth century. While other reformers concentrated more on reforming the social institutions of family and marriage with special emphasis on the status and rights of women, Jotirao Phule revolted against the unjust caste system under which million of people had suffered for centuries. In particular, he courageously upheld the cause of the untouchables and took up the cudgels for the poorer peasants. He was a militant advocate of their rights. The story of his stormy life is an inspiring saga of a continuous struggle, which he waged relentlessly against the forces of reaction. What was remarkable was his ability to stand up against all kinds of pressure without faltering even once and act always according to his convictions. Though some keen observers of the social scene in Maharashtra like Narayan Mahadeo Parmanand did acknowledge his greatness in his lifetime, it is only in recent decades that there is increasing appreciation of his service and sacrifice in uplifting the masses.


Childhood:
Jotirao Phule was born in 1827. His father, Govindrao was a vegetable vendor at Poona. Originally Jotirao's family, known as Gorhays, came from Katugan, a village in the Satara district of Maharashtra. His grandfather Shetiba Gorhay settled down in Poona. Since Jotirao's father and two uncles served as florists under the last of the Peshwas, they came to be known as 'Phules'. Jotirao's mother passed away when he was hardly one year old. After completing his primary education, Jotirao had to leave the school and help his father by working on the family's farm. Jotirao's marriage was celebrated when he was not even thirteen.


Education:
Impressed by Jotirao's intelligence and his love for knowledge, two of his neighbours, one a Muslim teacher and another a Christian gentleman persuaded his father Govindrao to allow him to study in a secondary school. In 1841, Jotirao got admission in the Scottish Mission's High School at Poona. It was in this school that he met Sadashiv Ballal Govande, a Brahmin, who remained a close friend throughout his life. Both Jotirao and Govande were greatly influenced by Thomas Paine's ideas and they read with great interest Paine's famous book ' The Rights of Man'. Moro Vithal Valvekar and Sakharam Yashwant Paranjapye were two other Brahmin friends of Jotirao who in later years stood by him in all his activities. After completing his secondary education in 1847, Jotirao decided not to accept a job under the Government.


Source of Inspiration:
An incident in 1848 made him aware of the qualities of the caste system, the predominant position of the Brahmins in the social set up. He was invited to attend a wedding of one of his Brahmin friends. As the bridegroom was taken in a procession, Jotirao accompanied him along with the relatives of his Brahmin friend. Knowing that Jotirao belonged to the Mali caste which was considered to be inferior by the Brahmins, the relatives of the bridegroom insulted and abused him. Jotirao left the procession and returned home. With tears in his eyes, he narrated his experience to his father who tried to pacify him. After this incident Jotirao made up his mind to defy the caste-system and serve the Shudras and women who were deprived of all their rights as human beings under the caste-system.



Social Life:
Education of women and the lower caste, he believed, deserved priority. Hence at home he began educating his wife Savitribai and open girl's school in August 1848. The orthodox opponents of Jotirao were furious and they started a vicious campaign against him. He refused to be unnerved by their malicious propaganda. As no teacher dared to work in a school in which untouchables were admitted as students, Jotirao asked his wife to teach the girls in his school. Stones and brickbats were thrown at her when she was on her way to the school. The reactionaries threatened Jotirao's father with dire consequences if he did not dissociate himself from his son's activities. Yielding to the pressure, Jotirao's father asked his son and the daughter-in-law to leave his house as both of them refused to give up their noble endeavour.

2 comments:

  1. Krantisurya Mahatma Jyotiba Rao Phule ne apna sampurna jeevan achhutodhaar hetu samerpit ker diya.Aise mahamanav ko mera koti koti pranam.

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  2. Phule was the first reformer who educated women and downthroden people there by made themselves understand what actually written in the scriptures and how brahmins are using the religion for their monetary benifits. No only educaton he invented new techniques in agriculture to increase the producation. He wanted to make the lower castes economically strong. Phule is a true Mahathma.

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