Babasaheb Kahparde passes away

Posted By Author on September 12, 2011

28/9/1968:

It is black day for me.  My maternal grandfather B.G. alias Babasaheb Khaparde courted death in our ancestral home at Amravati in the noon by method of ‘Prayopaweshan, i.e., courting voluntary death by fasting.  I was born at his official bungalow at Nagpur when he was a minister. Like his father he was an all India political figure, a lawyer of repute and a scholar. He was president of All India Hindu Mahasabha, and chairman of Badrinath temple trust. He wrote articles under the name of ‘Baba Bharati’ in Prasad magazine of Pune. His book ‘From Science to Samadhi’ was acclaimed.  Sir C.D.Deshmukh served him as secretary.  Great personalities like Gopal Krishna Gokhale, Rabindranath Tagore, Bipin Chandra Pal and Surendranath Banerjee, Motibabu Ghosh of Amrit Bazaar Patrika uncle of Tusharkanti Ghosh, C.R. Das, Tilak, Mrs. Anne Besant, sister Nivedita, Arvind Ghosh, Subhash Bose, Madan Mohan Malviya and the like were guests at our home in his care. His mansion should have been a heritage building.  Before death he took promise from my mother that in case of his death my marriage shall not be postponed.

The day was Saturday and according to lunar calendar it was ‘saptami’ which was Chinu’s date of birth. Shri Baba came to our hut and waked us up at 4 A.M. I finished morning duties.  Worm infection still persisted.  Took bath in the cold Narmada and was ready by 5 A.M.

Baba immediately started preparations for cooking.  All of us were busy.  At 8 A.M. he brought dal, rice, ghee, vegetables etc.  Gitamasi was called inside.  All of us sat on the floor in his hut.  He took Chinu in the lap and told Gitamasi to put her middle finger of the right hand on the spinal column of Chinu and Shri Baba kept his middle finger on Gitamasi’s.  After chanting some mantras Shri Baba told me to go to the Kapildhara waterfall of the Narmada and donate rice, dal, etc. to the priest there.

Accordingly I left.  Crossed the Narmada river afoot and handed over the assortments to the priest.  On way back I collected some wild flowers and plants.  Shri Baba saw the plants and told me to put them in our nursery.  He then left and was busy in cooking.

Yes.  At about six A.M. just before the Sunrise I requested Shri Baba to give a pose with Chinu in his lap for photograph.  He outright refused.  I then promised Him that I would not snap His face, He agreed. He took Chinu on shoulder with his back facing and Chinu looking at camera. I exposed two snaps. Permission was granted in honour of Chinu’s third birthday. This photograph is kept at ‘Samadhi’ room of Babb at Dehradun.

Haribandhu left to fetch milk.  I copied the dictation given by Shri Baba on 25/8/1968 from Dada’s notebook as blow:

Feeling and Intellect

“Man is guided by both feeling and intellect, what is to be noted at the outset is that feeling is deeper and wider reality than the intellect. If, on the other hand, feeling is allowed to function without circumspection serenading by the intellect, the former will become rabid and the sure sequel will be development of fanaticism.  If intellect is allowed to function without the ennobling guidance from the feeling, the intellect is sure to become dry and insipid, void of everything worth the name.  The art and science of human development are the mutually integrated functioning of both the intellect and the feeling in a healthy manner and with the loftiest ideal as far as one can manage to look into what loftiness really is, naturally, the concept of loftiness will be relative. It will vary from man to man.  It will vary as much as man’s ability of grasping and understanding things differs in accordance with the stage and phase through which he is passing.  To the same man, if of course, he is more or less dynamic, the concept of loftiness will continuously get a progressive change.

Now when your feeling accepts something as the ideal of your life then the next thing necessary is to strive as hard as you can to have the ideal realized in subjective and objective practice.  Clearly note that sheer idealization is all nonsense.  It turns man into a stupid daydreamer.

When your feeling accepts something, your ideal and the intellect gives ditto to it.  Then the first thing necessary is to develop a proper ability of concentration in relation to the ideal before you by continuous unfailing methodical and systematic practice.  Idealization through impotent type of feeling will have to be discarded in toto and instead one has to generate the cogent and kinetic type of feeling. It is this latter type of feeling that will compel the truant loitering intellect to function as the true instrument of realizing the ideal.”

I was to leave today. Therefore for my sake Shri Baba took his meal hurriedly before time.  Then He called Haribandhu and me inside for lunch.  He Himself made the preparations of sweets viz. ‘Halva (halvah) and Chamcham.  He sat in front of us and as usual went on pressing helpings.  The flat tummy transformed into orb. What a delicious meal! Whenever I left him he himself prepared parting feast in my honour.

I then packed up hurriedly.  Shri Baba came to see me off.  I handed over rupees hundred and twenty five to Chinu as birthday gift.  Made Pronams to Shri Baba.  He invited me with wife in the first week of November for a week. I agreed.

Along with Haribandhu I left at a jogtrot speed. And reached ‘Naka’.  Ramesh Saxena surprisingly met.  He arrived just then with his father and one person. I had a brief chat.  My luxury bus came.  With Haribandhu I boarded it and reached Amarkantak.  I got bus for Pendra road at 1.30 P.M. I bade good-bye to Haribandhu after handing over a few purchases made at Amarkantak for Baba, Chinu and Gitamasi.

Arrived at Pendra road and immediately got the train for Bilaspur.  There I jumped in a train heading to Raipur.  Accidentally in my compartment I met Sachitanand Padhye, my real cousin.  Surprise was mutual.  He forced me to get down at Raipur.  We reached our ancestral home in Budhapara at 11 P.M. Met uncle Madhu kaka, Malti Kaku, and Sumati Kaku. We dined and retired at 12.30 in the night.

Sachit’s father Mukund kaka was a cine actor but died young.  He was a versatile personality well known in Madhya Pradesh.

29/9/1968:

Got up early. Madhukaka’s son Shripad left for Jagadalpur.  Pronams to both aunties and with Sacchit came to Dangania on the outskirt of Raipur at my brother Umeshchandra’s house.  His father in law was bedridden.  He and children had fever.  My sister-in-law, Padmavati was to accompany me to Amravati but she cancelled it.  I had bath and lunch and left the house by 10 A.M.  Sachit saw me off at the station.  I caught the Howrah-Bombay express and had comfortable journey in Nagpur bogie.  Prof. Ingle of physics from Raipur, old mate was with me. After Nagpur reached standing to Badnera.  The rush was heavy.  At Badnera Mr. Aghor told the sad news about the demise of mother’s father the previous day.  I reached home at 10 P.M. On seeing me mother wept and she narrated how grandfather was conscious till end.  He told to recite Gita, he chanted ‘shlokas’ from Gita, told all that he was leaving peacefully, closed eyes and died.  The cross section of the town attended the funeral.  It was a throng of thousands.  I went through newspaper reports about him and slept.

30/9/1968:

On 27th Brijlal Biyani expired and on 28th my grandfather breathed his last.  What a co-incidence. In college condolence meeting was arranged.  Shri Biyani was a member of the Congress Executive Committee when Subhash Bose was elected All India President of the Congress at Tripuri defeating Gandhiji’s candidate Pattabhi Sitaramaiyya and on Gandhiji’s say the executives resigned including Biyani.

Tomorrow is my birthday by lunar calendar i.e. Dasserha. Else it is on 7/10/68

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