Former Union Minister and Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission Mohan Dharia who passed away at private hospital in Pune this morning, was born on 14 February 1925 at Nate village,in what was then Kolaba district, presently called Mahad Taluka, in Raigad district of Maharashtra.
Survived with wife and three children, Dharia joined Fergusson College at Pune with an intention to be a Medical Surgeon. However,after participation and conviction in Freedom Struggle of 1942, he graduated as a Lawyer from I. L.S. College, attached to the Pune University and became an Advocate of the Bombay High Court.
The revolutionary freedom fighter, youth and trade union leader,was immensely inspired after reading autobiographies of Netaji Subhashchandra Bose, Barrister Vinayak Damodar Savarkar and revolutionaries like Bhagat Singh and others.
Influenced by their lives he decided to be a revolutionary.
Dharia was selected as a Seva Dal volunteer for historical All India Congress Committee (AICC) Session at Mumbai. He was entrusted with serving drinking water to great leaders on the dais, from where he could observe them closely and heard their inspiring speeches.
The message-cum-ultimatum by Mahatmaji for Britishers to 'Quit India' and an earnest appeal to Indian Citizens to 'Do or Die for our freedom' inspired him.
He jumped into the Freedom Movement of India. Dharia and his young colleagues joined the march with weapons to capture Mahad Tehsil. Five people died in the firing including one Government Officer. Young Dharia immediately went underground, but was ultimately arrested and convicted in 1942.
Alongside the Late Nana Purohit, Dharia organised peoples' army and liberated Janjira State in 1948, where he was the Foreign Minister of the Provisional Government.
As a young leader, he mobilised hundreds of students and youth in Maharashtra State. He effectively led Trade Unions for Postmen, State Transport,Banks, Defence, Hindustan Antibiotics and other employees and was the Founder President of the National Labour Centre at Pune.
Dharia was a member of the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) during 1957-60. As the Chairman of Pune Municipal Transport (PMT),he gave a new direction and life to this Public Sector Undertaking.
In 1960 owing to political differences, he resigned from the Congress Socialist Party, thus relinquishng all the posts to observe healthy democratic practices in the General Secretary, Maharashtra Congress Committee and Member of A.I.C.C.
He was the General Secretary of the Maharashtra State Congress Committee and also Election In-Charge for the 1962 General Elections.
His organisational capacities were, recognised by all including former Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru.
Dharia was a member of A.I.C.C. from 1962 to 1975. Him and his group of Young Turks compelled the leaders of the Congress party to accept the policy of commitment as against convenience and initiated action-oriented politics. MORE UNI SP JF SM1503
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