work for empowerment of women and upliftment of the under-privileged. It would regularly organize widow remarriages. The practice of devdasi was abolished in Goa largely due to the efforts of Prabhodhankar and volunteers of his ‘swadhya ashram’.
PRABHODHANKAR- THE ACTIVIST
Prabhodhankar had zero tolerance for injustice. During stint as a teacher of an English medium school, one of his colleagues was removed from the job by the then Bombay municipality. At the receiving end was a handicapped person by the name ‘gadgil’. Being on a temporary position, Gadgil could in no way challenge the BMC’s decision. Prabhodhankar quickly mobilized students in his favor and submitted a signed memorandum to the municipality. His efforts yielded fruits as the administration restored the services of the handicapped teacher.
Some of his protests were aggressive and even took extreme form. In 1926, during ‘Ganpati festival’ at Dadar in Mumbai, he appealed to the Brahmins to let member of a lower caste Hindu perform prayers at the installation ceremony of lord Ganesha. When Brahmins chose to ignore the suggestion, Prabhodhan threatened to destroy the idol of the elephant god if his demand was not met. The Brahmin community fell in line. The prayers finally took place at the hands of ‘Madkebua’, a dalit community leader. In another incident, he set on fire a marriage pandal. Prabhodhankar was agitated at the forceful wedding of a 12 year old girl with a 65 year old man. The activism was essentially to enforce principles of equality and social justice.
PRABHODHANKAR- THE REFORMIST HINDU IDEOLOGUE
Prabhodhankar was a man of his own conviction refusing to be bracketed with any particular ideology, cause or ‘isms’. While he would champion the cause of the working class, he believed in hindutva philosophy with equal amount of conviction. At a time when congress and the Hindu mahasabha were both considered to be parties with Hindu leanings, Prabhodhankar decided to chart out his own path. He associated himself with ‘Hindu missionary society’ which firmly believed that leadership of the Hindu community should be placed in the hands of non-Brahmins class.
Hindutva for him stood for progressive values and inclusiveness rather than narrow minded approach. Prabhodhankar never uttered a word against Muslims, Christians or any other religious minority. He relentlessly worked for internal reforms within the Hindu society by strongly opposing the orthodox Brahmins and their discriminatory ways. He protested Brahmins hegemony and their members acting as sole spokespersons of the Hindus.
PRABHODHANKAR- A JOURNALIST
Keshav Thackeray walked the first step in journalism as a child when he received a pocket encyclopedia, a part of which was to be translated for a publication.
Keralkokilkar krishnaji narayan aathle gave him early lessons of journalism and writing. During his school days, Keshav began a weekly magazine titled ‘vidhrthi’ meaning ‘student’. He even invented a machine at home and printed 50 copies of the magazine. In1908 he became a proof reader for a local newspaper and wrote several articles under pseudo names.
His actual foray as a writer began with the launch of ‘Prabhodhan’. The