Veteran journalist and social activist Yadavrao Deshmukh passed away at a hospital in Ghaziabad on June 6. He was unwell for some time. He was 87. Since he had pledged to donate his body after death, his body was donated to the Maulana Azad Medical College, New Delhi. His eyes were donated to Guru Nanak Eye Hospital, New Delhi. He was affectionately called Yadav Kaka.
His body was taken to the Deendayal Research Institute (DRI) where he was paid tribute by DRI workers and senior Sangh leaders. Prominent among those who paid tribute included the RSS Sahsarkaryavah Shri V Bhagaiya, Kshetra Pracharak Shri Prem Kumar, veteran journalist and former editor of Panchjanya Shri Devendra Swarup Agrawal, senior journalist Shri Achyutananda Mishra, former editor of Rashtradharma Shri Vireshwar Dwivedi, former Rajasthan BJP president Dr Mahesh Chandra Sharma, former chairman of Khadi and Village Industries Dr Mahesh Sharma and Shri Ramdas Pandey from Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh. The body was donated through Dadhichi Dehdan Samiti. Shri Mahesh Pant from the Samiti was present at DRI.
Born on May 27, 1928, Yadavraoji did graduation from the Banaras Hindu University in 1947. He was a Pracharak in Varanasi, Mirzapur, Jaunpur, Gandhipur, Balia and Azamgarh. He edited Panchjanya Hindi weekly from Lucknow from 1958 to 1968. He was also managing editor of daily Tarun Bharat and Rashtradharma from 1968 to 1975. He was also editor of Yug Vivek weekly from 1977 to 1980. During Emergency, he was jailed. He was a member of the Akhil Bharatiya Samachar Patra Sampadak Sammelan from 1961 to 1970. Later, he joined Deendayal Research Institute and held the responsibility of its organising secretary and Principal Secretary from 1990 to 1998. He edited Manthan, the monthly magazine published by DRI. He was also member of DRI’s central managing committee. He was member of Kapart from 2001 to 2003. He was vice president of Janshikshan Sansthan in Gonda from 2002 to 2004. Presently, he was patron of the Akhil Bharatiya Ganga Mahasabha.
In his tribute, Shri Abhay Mahajan, organising secretary of DRI, said “Yadav Kaka was a source of inspiration to hundreds of workers and the karyakartas. In the initial years of DRI in Chitrakoot, he worked shoulder to shoulder with Nanaji and helped him laying a strong foundation of the work, fine-tuning it with the philosophy of Integral Humanism. He also gave impetus to intellectual activities by the Institute when Nanaji was fully engaged in rural reconstruction work.”
Paying tribute, Shri Anand Mishra Abhay, editor of Rashtradharma, described Yadavraoji as a motivator, inventor and the man with brilliant brain. “When he was managing editor of Rashtradharma, Rajju Bhaiya was Director in-charge. In those days, Panchjanya used to be published from Lucknow and it was printed on a rotary press purchased from Russia. Yadavraoji made some amendments in the machine to print two colours—saffron and black. The saffron colour used in the masthead of Panchjanya began with the efforts of Yadavraoji. There are many incidents, which demonstrate the uniqueness of his personality. During Emergency, he was arrested from Husainganj Crossing, where the statute of Maharana Pratap stands today, when he was returning after meeting Chaudhary Charan Singh. Our machine man Keshav Rao narrated an interesting incident about him. Whenever he visited Yadavraoji’s residence, he never allowed him to return without having tea and he used to prepare the team himself. This shows how much affection he had with his fellow workers. All these qualities make him dear to all.”