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Apropos R.Y. Deshpande’s private dispute(s)

May 28, 2013

R.Y. Deshpande has been left red-faced once again when his lies and baseless allegations about Prof. Manoj Das were exposed on this website and proved to be untrue.

An embattled R.Y. Deshpande is now seeking to draw the attention away from his lies about Prof. Manoj Das’s alleged involvement at the Krishan Nagar court. Unable to substantiate his allegations about Prof. Manoj Das he attempts to rake up other issues, such as Amal Kiran’s statement about the reasons for which “twixt” was replaced by “in” in Book Three, Canto Four of the 1993 edition of Savitri. To deflect the attention from his wrongdoings, R.Y. Deshpande is now creating theatrical smokescreens by publicly throwing down the gauntlet to Prof. Manoj Das, challenging him to have an open discussion on the 1993 edition of Savitri.

R.Y. Deshpande certainly believes that it is his birthright to accuse people of wrongdoing, to twist and selectively rearrange information as it suits him or to lie about others whenever he disagrees with them. He would like everyone to believe that he is the most modest, humble, dedicated, devoted follower of Sri Aurobindo. But at the same time he would want all others to consider him to be the most enlightened, learned, qualified scholar of Savitri who is therefore the highest and final authority on this subject.

Therefore, according to R.Y. Deshpande, Sri Aurobindo’s closest disciples such as Nolini Kanta Gupta, Amal Kiran and Nirodbaran had the least respect for Sri Aurobindo and his work, particularly his poem Savitri. It is with great ease that R.Y. Deshpande accuses them of compromising the authenticity of the poem because he wants us to believe that those involved in the editing of the 1993 edition of the poem were arrogant, less devoted to Sri Aurobindo than he is, had little or no integrity, and being less enlightened than him, they would inevitably make the wrong editorial decisions.

R.Y. Deshpande would like us to believe that Amal Kiran and Nirodbaran would have replaced “twixt” by “in” in Book Three, Canto Four of the 1993 edition of Savitri just because they were arrogant and they considered themselves to be wiser than Sri Aurobindo. But, is it surprising if R.Y. Deshpande does not tell his readers the complete story and instead uses Amal Kiran’s own words “biggest puzzle in the text of Savitri” by twisting them, like he has done several other times before, to give them a completely different meaning ?

It is not the first time that R.Y. Deshpande has personally targeted Amal Kiran, Nirodbaran and those like Prof. Manoj Das who appreciated the dedicated, meticulous and rigorous editorial work of the 1993 edition of Savitri. There are several examples of R.Y. Deshpande’s deliberate misrepresentation of facts.  R.Y. Deshpande has frequently distorted Amal Kirans’s memoirs to project the image that Amal Kiran was disobeying the MotherHe has also insidiously suggested that Nirodbaran was attracting black lizards as a sign of the dark influence he was under while editing Savitri. And he has also misquoted the Mother, out of context, to give the impression that the Mother was unhappy with corrections being made to Savitri. These and other examples clearly illustrate, R.Y. Deshpande’s dishonest approach to criticize all those who did not agree with him.

For R.Y. Deshpande it is only a minor issue to lie about and publicly insult Sri Aurobindo’s disciples such as Nolini Kanta Gupta, Amal Kiran, Nirodbaran or Prof. Manoj Das and other members of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram vis-a-vis the Savitri poem. For he would like everyone to believe that his grievance is not based on personal disputes, but on larger issues. Thus, in order to justify his three decade long personal dispute and agitation, R.Y. Deshpande is also attempting to add some valor to his actions by quoting Sri Aurobindo:

“Private dispute should always be avoided; but shrink not from public battle; yet even there appreciate the strength of thy adversary.” ,

By using this quote, R.Y. Deshpande would like his readers to believe that by finding fault with those responsible for the 1993 edition of Savitri he has not engaged in a petty, private dispute, but that he has instead been a part of a larger, nobler battle that is meant to serve the Public Good of saving the Savitri poem, ever since he decided to become The Self-Appointed Custodian and most learned Authority of this poem.

That R.Y. Deshpande finds it difficult to pay heed to Sri Aurobindo’s advice is not surprising when one looks at the evolution of his life at the Sri Aurobindo Ashram, an institution which he chose to join voluntarily and which he has since then used to transform his life from an unknown, unwanted nuclear physicist to a self-appointed speaker on Sri Aurobindo and his poem Savitri.

R.Y. Deshpande’s time at the Ashram has been marked by one personal dispute after another. Apart from publicly insulting some of the most respected and senior disciples of Sri Aurobindo he has also shown scant regard to the collective ethos of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram. Why? Because no one would succumb to R.Y. Deshpande’s wishes and tantrums and accept that his word and personal opinion must be considered to be the most enlightened and therefore final.

Since the time that R.Y. Deshpande was kindly asked to dissociate himself with the related editorial work of the Savitri in the 1980s because of the unnecessary trouble he was creating, he has carried a personal grouse about some individuals. He has since then been vindictively persecuting those who disagreed with him.

When R.Y. Deshpande’s efforts against certain individuals failed, he targeted the institution on the whole. Prof. Manoj Das’s letter dated 1999 had prophetically revealed the intentions behind many of R.Y. Deshpande’s actions, especially his active and recent involvement in several hostile actions against not only some of the members of the Ashram but even the institution as a whole. In the year 1999, Prof. Manoj Das wondered:

“Are they a part of a wider effort to scandalise the Ashram? Disappointed at some other fronts, are they banging their fists on his beautiful work – the new edition of Savitri, closest so far to the Master’s original? I do not know.”

The shroud of doubt, malafide and negativity that R.Y. Deshpande has cast over Sri Aurobindo’s poem Savitri has done much more harm to the purity and sanctity of this sublime poem than all the typos or accidental human errors that were ever present in the poem in all the earlier editions.

For instance, R.Y. Deshpande’s proposal to publicly exhibit Sri Aurobindo’s manuscripts of the Savitri poem “on the Net for all to see and judge for themselves the legitimacy of the revisions of the Archives editors” is one such red herring that he keeps planting knowing fully well that it makes absolutely no sense to display these manuscripts. Because, just by seeing the manuscripts – many a times the same passages, in slightly different versions, on several pieces of papers, sometimes even small bits of paper, written during different times – no conclusions can be drawn unless a thorough editorial work has been conducted to produce a compilation that matches Sri Aurobindo ‘s writing the closest. Such a work is after all called “editing.”

Such an elaborate and meticulous editorial work, as undertaken by Amal Kiran, Nirodbaran and their dedicated editorial team is nothing else but the 1993 edition of Savitri. If R.Y. Deshpande does not understand this basic process of editing and of putting a written work as complex as Savitri together, he has no business commenting or engaging himself in any kind of editorial work. But assuming that R.Y. Deshpande has a basic understanding of editing, as he has now single-handedly and arbitrarily edited and produced his personal edition of Savitri (of dubious authenticity as it is done without due process and verification), his proposal to put Sri Aurobindo’s manuscripts of Savitri on public display is itself fraught with malafide.

His unreasonable proposal is clearly designed to cast aspersions on the Sri Aurobindo Ashram by suggesting that by not displaying the manuscripts, the Ashram and its Archives have something to hide. Such meaningless proposals made by R.Y. Deshpande will always remain unfulfilled because they do not serve any purpose, except for appeasing R.Y. Deshpande’s ego. But it is these meaningless, simplistic proposals that he twists, turns around and uses against the Ashram and its members.

The unfortunate truth is that if today Sri Auroibinso’s poem Savitri has any negative connotation attached to it, it is squarely and principally because of R.Y. Deshpande and his motivated actions that are designed to settle personal scores. What has been done to the Savitri poem by R.Y. Deshpande and his anti-Ashram associates two decades ago is now being repeated on the institution of the Ashram. As these disgruntled and frustrated elements cannot redeem themselves anymore, they will not feel satisfied until they have tried to scandalize the Ashram… all this in the name of Sri Aurobindo!!!

In the same letter Prof Manoj Das says:

There is a Chinese proverb: “When a finger points at the moon, the imbecile looks at the finger, instead of at the moon.” I cannot, by any stretch of imagination, look upon these people as imbecile. At the same time I fail to understand their wisdom.

But after several years of witnessing R.Y. Deshpande and his anti-Ashram associates, it is not difficult to understand why they cannot see beyond the tip of their nose or fingers. Instead of silently relishing the Savitri poem, the first, second, third or fourth editions, and soaking in the wonderful atmosphere of the Ashram, they choose and prefer to spend their lives admiring the reflections of their self-righteousness and wallowing in the dense mud of their ignorant egos.

While these people seem to have crossed the point of no return, one may only feel sorry for all those who have fallen victims to their hostility and who blindly act under their negative influence.

—————————————————————————————————————————————————- – Well-wishers of Sri Aurobindo Ashram –


From → Uncategorized

  1. Dear Editor,

    This RY Deshpande is either a crack or a rogue. You can choose whichever one you prefer, or you can also choose both also. When it comes to obituaries , he says that Amal Kiran was a genius, a Yogi, a Sadhak , a poet, a scholar and what not….(since it suited him to say so at that time)

    And now he says that Amal was insincere, lacking in devotion, arrogant in his vanity that he knew better than Sri Aurobindo and ….what not….(since it suits RY Deshpande to say so because it makes him feel superior in every way to Amal Kiran).

    He goes on harping that during breakfast Nirodbaran told him some things about Savitri while Nirodbaran has written just the opposite in a note to Sri Aurobindo Ashram Trust about Savitri. Whom should we believe???? Self-promoting RY Deshpande or the written word of Nirodbaran? Now he insults Nirodbaran and calls him moron. And calls Amal Kiran too moron while writing about him the best things in the obituaries.

    He is just a shameless hypocrite trying to take advantage of every situation just for himself.

    For self-glorification RY Deshpande can stoop to any level, whether out of malice or because of stupidity… I will let you decide.


  2. Birds of same feather always stick together.

    No wonder R Y Deshpande is a friend of Sraddhalu

  3. Rajeev permalink

    Here is a classic example of RYD’s method of self -promotion. First, RYD moots an idea. Then he quotes someone else repeating his idea. Conclusion: his idea has to be a good one!!!

    So RYD writes:
    “The late Jugal Kishore Mukherjiwrote a fifty page letter to Amal on these revisions. … I will throw a challenge which Deshpande has long been insisting upon: Make all the Savitri manuscripts public. Put them up on the Net for all to see and judge for themselves the legitimacy of the revisions of the Archives editors.”

    Deshpande, first moots the meaningless idea of making all Savitri manuscripts public. Then he uses JKM to promote his own idea. Conclusion: his idea has to be a good one!!! And we all thought that JKM was smarter than that….

  4. Sanjay permalink

    RY Deshpande is a fool to hope that people will trust him more than they trust Amal-ji Nirod-ji and Manoj-ji. RY-D is actually an outsider compared to these great stalwarts. Amal-ji and Nirod-ji have worked under The Master’s direct force and guidance. RY-D’s twisted, doubting mind is the bad influence on the Savitri poem. There is no doubt that Amal-ji and Nirod-ji would have done the best humanly possible work to bring out the purest edition of Savitri. RY-D is only a slave of his ego and is unable to accept this simple fact. Has he been doing any sadhana in the Ashram or has he been too busy playing politics with The Master’s Works???

  5. Pradeep M. permalink

    I can bet that if the Ashram were to consider R.Y. Deshpande’s proposal of publicly displaying Sri Aurobindo’s hand written manuscripts on the internet and put them up on their website, R.Y.D. would then accuse them of something else. He could then accuse them of suppressing some of the manuscripts. He could also accuse them of tampering with the copies of the manuscripts (on the internet only copies can be displayed not the originals, so how would this satisfy R.Y.D.?). He could go on making some accusation or the other. This has been his track record all along. So why should anybody pay heed to any of his silly demands? It is better to ignore him entirely and let him be. In any case he will keep making as much noise as possible. Fortunately, it is hardly a handful of retards who are even bothered or interested in what R.Y.D. has to say.

  6. ARM permalink

    The fuss that RYD is making about the Savitri poem is ridiculous and obviously meant to try to show that he can out-shout everyone.

    First: if Amal, Nirodbaran, their editorial team and scores of others involved in the process had thought that it was not appropriate to make the change from “twixt” to “in” they would have been the first ones to refrain from doing so. Just because RYD thinks that he knows and understands Sri Aurobindo’s poetry more than anybody else, doesn’t mean that he is right!

    Second: The change from “twixt” to “in” has been very clearly mentioned and documented. It is not something secret that has been done to cheat the readers. So anybody, like RYD who prefers “in” and believes that his life will change because of it, can simply replace “twixt” with “in” and keep reading Savitri the way he/she likes it. What stops RYD from doing so and living his life quietly and peacefully? Oh of course, unless he wants to out-shout everyone!

    Third: Sri Aurobindo wrote “in” instead of “twixt” in most of his manuscripts. Because Sri Aurobindo wrote “in” several times, does it mean that he was a lower form of the Divine when he wrote “in” and higher form of Divine when he wrote “twixt”??? And who is decide that? RYD???

    So RYD, what’s your big problem man! Grow up and get a life instead of living the life of a parasite that only survives on the sap of the Savitri controversy.


  7. Mickey Mouse permalink

    There is a place for everyone in this world and every person in this world must find his place.
    The Ashram is certainly not the place for RYD. His place has to be in the Savitri Disneyland…

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