Pune: “Balasaheb Deshpande was a Samaj Shilpi, who not only served the Vanvasis, but also united them with complete honesty and integrity. He brought many nationalist and dedicated Vanvasi leaders like Hipson Roy, Anderson Mawari, NC Zeliang, Workle Dindopugh, etc to the Kalyan Ashram fold,” said RSS Sahsarkaryavah Shri Dattetreya Hosabale, while speaking at a function organised in Pune on January 19 to celebrate birth centenary of Kalyan Ashram founder Balasaheb Deshpande.

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Kalyan Ashram vice president Shri Kripa Prasad Singh, noted businessman Shri Krishan Kumar Goel, Shri Fatehchandra Ranka, national award winner Smt Thamatai Pawar, Balasaheb Deshpande’s daughter Shobha Ghate, Kalyan Ashram State president Dr Mali and dignitaries like Dr Ramesh Kawadia, Shri Khichare, Shri Bapu Ghatpande and Shri Pandurang Bhandkar were also present on the occasion.

Shri Dattatreya further said that on the invitation of Deshpandeji, Rani Maa Gaidinlu attended the Kalyan Ashram’s first Akhil Bharatiya Mahila Sammelan in Bhilai as chief guest. She was so much impressed with the Kalyan Ashram’s work that she became a part and parcel of it. She then helped in starting the Kalyan Ashram work in the remote areas of Mizoram, Meghalaya, Manipur, Arunachal Pradesh, Andaman Nicobar islands.

Shri Kripa Prasad Singh called upon the workers to expand the work in all 374 districts of the country. He appealed to the young graduates, post graduates, doctors and engineers to donate time for the cause. He said Kalyan Ashram runs a total of 16,221 projects across the country. He pointed out that the Kalyan Ashram activists planted 14,97,600 saplings from June 15 to September 15, 2013 and the pictures and message of Swami Viveknanda were taken to 42 lakh house.

Another function in Satna

The birth centenary of Kalyan Ashram founder Balasaheb Deshpande was held at Satna Stadium also. Noted saint Mahamandaleshwar Swami Akhileshwara-nanda was the chief guest. Tribal Welfare Minister in Government of Madhya Pradesh Shri Gyan Singh Gond, vice president of Kalyan Ashram Shri Kripa Prasad Singh, Prant Sanghachalak Shri Shankar Prasad and Swami Manglanandaji from Prayag were also present on the occasion. Swami Akhileshwarananda described Balasaheb Deshpande as a visionary, thinker and ideologue who bridged the gap between the Vanvasis and the rest of the society. Shri Gyan Singh Gaur applauded the Kalyan Ashram work.