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OpinionsRSS ideologue Madan Das Devi , who passed away last month..

RSS ideologue Madan Das Devi , who passed away last month..


By Narendra Modi

A few days ago, when we lost Shri Madan Das Devi Ji, lakhs of Karyakartas, including myself, were saddened beyond words. It's a challenging reality to grapple with – the idea that a personality as impactful as Madan Das Ji is no longer among us. Yet, we are consoled by the knowledge that his influence will live on. His teachings and principles will continue to serve as a beacon of inspiration and guidance in the journey ahead.

I had the privilege of working closely with Madan Das Ji over the years. I saw, at very close quarters, his simplicity and soft-spoken nature. He was the quintessential organizational man, and I, too, spent a substantial time working in the organization. So, it is natural that aspects relating to organizational development and growth of Karyakartas regularly in our conversations. During one such conversation, I asked him where he originally belonged. He told me that while he is from a village near Solapur, Maharashtra, his ancestors were from Gujarat. But he was not aware of the exact place they were from. I told him that I had a teacher with the surname Devi and that teacher belonged to Visnagar. Later on, he even visited Visnagar and Vadnagar. Our conversations also took place in Gujarati.

Among the many specialties of Madan Das Ji, one of them was his ability to go beyond words and understand the emotions behind those words. Soft-spoken and always smiling, he could also summarize hours-long discussions in just a few sentences. Madan Das Ji's life journey illustrates the wonders that can be achieved when the self is put on the back burner and the collective is given prominence. A Chartered Accountant by training, he could have led a comfortable life, but his calling lay elsewhere – in shaping minds and working towards 's development.

Madan Das Ji had unwavering faith in the youth of India. He could connect with youngsters across the length and breadth of India. No wonder, he immersed himself in strengthening the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad. One of his key influences in this journey was Yashwantrao Kelkar Ji. He was deeply inspired by him and would often talk about him. Madan Das Ji always emphasized involving more girl students in the working of the ABVP and empowering them with a platform to contribute to social welfare. He often said that when girl students are involved in any collective effort, that effort will always be more sensitive. For Madan Das Ji, affection for students was above everything else. He would be among students all the time but, like a lotus in the water, he would never involve himself in university .

I can think of several leaders who owe their rise in public life to the mentoring received from Madan Das Ji during their younger days. But it was never in his nature to make tall claims about it.

Nowadays, the concepts of people management, talent management, and skill management are extremely popular. Madan Das Ji was an expert at understanding people and mapping their talents onto organizational goals. He was special because he understood people's capabilities and assigned work based on that. He never agreed with the premise that people must be moulded as per his requirements. That is why if any young Karyakarta had a new idea, Madan Das Ji was the obvious sounding board. That is also why a lot of people who worked with him were self-motivated to leave a mark based on their own respective strengths. Therefore, organizations grew massively under his leadership and yet remained cohesive and effective even as they became bigger in scale and scope. Needless to say, Madan Das Ji had a packed travel schedule. Beyond his duties, he was selective when it came to meeting people and was always well-prepared for a meeting. But his programmes were always simple and not heavy, never a burden on any Karyakarta. This trait remained integral to him until the very end. He braved long illnesses, but when I would ask him about it, he would talk about it only after multiple enquiries. He would remain happy despite the physical pain. Even in illness, he used to continuously think about what he could do for the country and society.

Madan Das Ji had a brilliant academic record and this also shaped his meticulous way of working. A voracious reader, whenever he read something good, he would send it to the concerned person working in that domain. I have been fortunate to receive such things very often. He was also blessed with a sound understanding of economics and policy matters. He envisioned an India where no person was dependent on others and where each individual could stand on their own feet, empowered by opportunities for self-improvement and growth. Madan Das Ji envisioned an India where self-reliance was not just a goal but a lived reality for every citizen, with a society rooted in the principles of mutual respect, empowerment, and shared prosperity. Now, as India becomes more and more self-reliant in various domains, nobody would be happier than him.

Today, when our democracy is vibrant, youth is confident, society is forward-looking, and the nation is brimming with hope and optimism, it is important to remember people like Shri Madan Das Devi Ji, who dedicated their entire lives to service and towards putting the nation on such an upward trajectory. (PIB)
The author is Prime Minister of India.

The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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