Spiritual leader Dada JP Vaswani dies at 99 in India

Spiritual leader Jashan Pahlajrai Vaswani, popularly known as Dada JP Vaswani died at his abode in Sadhu Vaswani Mission in Pune on Thursday morning, just 21 days before his 100th birthday on August 2.

The Mission in a tweet, said, “0901hrs IST July 12 2018, on sacred Guruvaar day, our Beloved Revered Dada J.P. Vaswani passes on, from the seen to the unseen. Ever-loving, ever-giving, may he continue to bless us from the beyond.”

“Dadaji breathed his last at 9.01 a.m. today. He was 99. His body has been kept for final darshan at his ashram, Sadhu Vaswani Mission,” the spokesperson said.

Dada Vaswani was admitted to a city-based private hospital a few days ago and was discharged on Wednesday night. Known for his ardent promotion of vegetarianism and animal rights, his mortal remains will be kept at the Mission till 2pm on Friday for followers to pay their last respect.

The Mission was planning a grand celebration on Vaswani’s 100th birthday in August that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was expected to attend. “I am saddened beyond words on the passing away of Dada JP Vaswani. He 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,” Modi said in a tweet.

Born on August 2, 1918, to a Sindhi couple Pahlajrai and Krishnadevi Vaswani of Hyderabad (Sindh) in undivided India, Dada Vaswani – as he was revered by the community – was one among seven children – three sisters and four brothers.

He headed the Sadhu Vaswani Mission – founded by his uncle and spiritual Guru, the late Sadhu T.L. Vaswani in Hyderabad in 1929, which has now branched out all over the world. Following his demise in 1966, Sadhu J.P. Vaswani was anointed his successor and he carried forward the legacy of his Guru’s Mission globally.

A proponent of world peace, vegetarianism, girls’ education, compassion for the poor, among others, Sadhu Vaswani addressed the British House of Commons, Global Forum of Spiritual Leaders in Oxford, World Parliament of Religions in Chicago, Millenium World Peace Summit of Religious and Spiritual Leaders at the UN, and Parliament of World Religions in South Africa,.

He initiated a global peace initiative – The Moment of Calm, when people observe two-minutes of silence to forgive all, on August 2, with eminent personalities like the Dalai Lama joining it. Among various national and international honours conferred on Sadhu Vaswani were the U Thant Peace Award in 1998, jointly with Pope John Paul II.

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