Very sad to have lost Swami Agnivesh. My respectful salute and Shraddhanjali to my human rights co-fighter and colleague. Deepest condolences to his friends and associates.Remember the innumerable occasions when we worked together or few where we differed. Remember my presence in the discussion and meeting on the hillocks bordering Haryana with Swami Agnivesh and Kailash Satyarthi the day when the Bandhua Mukti Morcha was founded.
Also recall the hectic days in the campus during the Mandal Commission agitation with me and my friends from PRO ( Peoples’Rights Organisation) supporting the Mandal report and Swami Agnivesh speaking against , amidst students protesting loudly with slogans of ” V. P. Singh Hai Hai ! ” Or in the early days of the post-Emergency election in Delhi when the Swami came to address a meeting in the Azadpur Govt. quarters in support of one of our civil liberties friend who was himself a candidate.
Or when we invited Swami Agnivesh to address and participate in the birth centenary celebrations of Munshi Premchand held at his birth-place, Lamhi village in Uttar Pradesh, at the end of July 1980. The Swami wore the saffron robes but he was more a social and political activist and less a religious devotee, always a friend of the poor and downtrodden. Swam Agnivesh, we will all miss you.
Aurobindo Ghose is a lawyer and human rights activist