Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Bhoodan, Bihardan and other achievements of Vinobha Bhave/

Mahatma Gandhi's greatest disciple was Acharya Vinobha Bhave. He initiated the bhoodan (gift of land) programme in 1951 under which over 4 million acres, some of which actually existed, was offered up gratis for redistribution, often to its original owners. One step up from bhoodan was gramdan (gift of the entire village) which was even less successful though, in its watered down, 'sulabh' form, more openly fraudulent. Finally, in August 1969, Acharya Vinobha Bhave (who had vowed not to leave Bihar till the problem of land re-distribution was solved) gained the most spectacular success of any Saint in World History when the entire state of Bihar (98% at any rate) was offered up as 'Bihardan'.

Over the next three decades, Bihar went from being considered one of the best administered States in the Union to becoming a byword for Backwardness, Crime and Corruption.

Vinobha Bhave has a written a book about the true meaning of the Bhagvad Gita. This gift of his is worth as much as his Bhoodan, Gramdan and Bihardan.

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