Phule was born in a "Mali" (Gardner) family of Poona in 1827. The Malis belonged to' Shudra Varna and were placed immediately below peasant caste of Maratha-kunbis of Maharashtra. He was educated at a Marathi school with a three year break at a mission school in Poona. In 1848 Phule began his work as a social reformer interested in education of low caste boys and girls, when he started a school for girls of low and untouchable castes. Since no female teacher was available, Phule asked his wife Savitribai to teach in the school. He opened two more schools for girls in 1851. He was honoured by the Board of education for the work he did for girls' education in 1852. Phule established a school for untouchables and a night school in 1852. By 1858, he gradually retired from the management of these schools and entered into a broader field of social reform. He supported the movement for widow remarriage in 1860 and in 1863 established a Home for the prevention of infanticide. Phule and his wife Savitribai adopted one orphan child from the Home because tney bad no child of their own. In 1865 he published a book on caste system written by one of his friends Padval. he organisation with which Phule's name is associated and for which he is remembered even today is the Satya Shodhak Samaj. It was established in 1873 by him and his colleagues to organise the lower castes against the Hindu social order based on varna and caste system. One of his colleagues started the first newspaper of the Movement, Din Bandhu,in 1877. The government appointed him a member of the Poona Municipality in 1876. He continued as a member till 1882 and fought for the cause of downtrodden

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