22 June 1897. On that day, Queen Victoria of England completed exactly 60 years of her
ascent to the British Throne. Naturally, an atmosphere of pompous festivity of that
Diamond Jubilee prevailed everywhere. The British Government had arranged grand functions
in all villages, towns and cities in Bharat too. Among other things, they distributed
sweets among the school children.
The poor were served with food. The prominent in society were conferred with decorative
A mood of revelry among people in Nagpur (Maharashtra) was evident from their new
attire, etc. Children were hurrying to their schools in groups in eager anticipation of
the sweets which were to be distributed there.
But amidst all this, one young boy was not happy. He threw away the sweets given to
him, and sat alone in a corner brooding.
His elder brother came and asked him, "Why are you downcast? Didn't you get the
sweets?" 'What's there in that sweet?" - the boy pointed to the sweets thrown
away by him and added, "But why should we celebrate the jubilee of the Queen who has
snatched away our Bhonsle's kingdom?"
The sweets, which were sweet to others were bitter for this boy. He had perceived
nothing but bitterness in the sweets. He was barely eight at that time. Patriotism had
found lodgment in his heart even at such a tender age, Such was Keshav. The boy was
eventually to become famous as Dr. Keshav Baliram Hedgewar. He founded the Rashtriya
Swayamsevak Sangh, a nationwide organization. He gave a new orientation to the country. He
awakened self-respect and patriotism among the Hindus.