He was the moral force behind the Sadhu Vaswani Mission.
Spiritual leader and educationist Dada J.P. Vaswani — the moral force behind the Sadhu Vaswani Mission and a tireless promoter of vegetarianism and animal rights — passed away on Thursday, aged 99, days short of his centenary.
Sources at the Sadhu Vaswani Mission said he had been admitted to a private hospital in the city for the past a few days and was discharged on Wednesday night. Dada Vaswani died on the mission premises on Thursday.
Born Jashan Pahlajrai Vaswani on August 2, 1918 in the city of Hyderabad in Sindh province (present-day Pakistan), he was a brilliant student in his youth, who matriculated at the tender age of 13 and graduated at 17.
His M.Sc. Thesis on the ‘Scattering of X-Rays by solids’ was examined by Nobel Laureate C.V Raman.
Acclaimed as a humanitarian and non-sectarian leader, he later gave up a promising academic career to follow in the footsteps of his uncle, Sadhu T.L Vaswani – the legendary Indian educationist who started the Mira Movement in education.
In order to propagate Sadhu Vaswani’s ideas and vision, he edited three monthly journals – the Excelsior (which became a popular journal), the India Digest and the East and West series.
He also served as one of the earliest Principals of the St. Mira’s College for Girls.
Regarded as a philosopher and a modern-day saint by the Sindhi diaspora, he was also an inspiring orator who often exchanged ideas with world spiritual leaders like the Dalai Lama.
He was also a prolific author, writing several hundred books on spirituality and communal harmony which have seen translations in a number of world languages.
In keeping with his shibboleth that “forgiveness is the golden key to peace,” his birthday on August 2 is celebrated as ‘Global Forgiveness Day’.
“Dada J.P. Vaswani lived for society and served the poor and needy with compassion. Blessed with immense wisdom, he was passionate about educating the girl child, cleanliness and furthering peace as well as brotherhood,” said Prime Minister Narendra Modi, adding that Dada Vaswani had been his “guiding light.”
His mortal remains were kept at the Sadhu Vaswani Mission for people to pay their last respects. The final rites will be performed on Friday.