NEW DELHI: While presenting the Union Budget 2019, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharama referred to Lord Basaveshwara and his teachings a couple of times during the speech. The Union Minister invoked Basavanna's principles and said, “Our government recognizes and follows the teachings of Lord Basaveshwara who preached 'Kayakave Kailasa.”
Lord Basaveshwara was 12th-century social reformer and thinker who first established the concept of ‘Kalyana Rajya’ or welfare state. His thoughts ushered in a new revolution in the Indian society, sowing the seeds of modern concepts of ‘sarvodaya’ ('universal upliftment) and ‘total revolution’. He argued for a position and status of all citizens irrespective of class, caste, creed and sex.
Basaveshwara was born in 1131 AD in a Brahmin family at Bagevadi, currently in Karnataka's Vijayapura. His parents were Madiraja and Madalambike. At a young age, Basaveshwara sought to achieve spiritual bliss and transform himself, denouncing the sacred janeu thread.
Basaveshwara, worked closely with the Kalchuri king Bijjala in Kalyana, later becoming the Prime Minister of Bijjala.
After observing the socio-economic problems from close quarters, he led the Vachana (poetry) movement, focusing on the welfare of all and revolting against the social malpractices. He also raised his voice against the gap between rich and poor, untouchability and discrimination against.
Basaveshwara also gave the famous twin socio-economic principles of – “Kayaka” and “Dasoha”. Kayaka refers to removal of all economic, social and religious inequalities while Dasoha refers to equal opportunity or employment. He said that an individual should be able to take up a job of his or her choice and that there should be no discrimination in professions.
Earlier this month, Prime Minister Narendra Modi also referred to Lord Basaveshwara in a tweet:
Paying homage to the venerable Bhagwan Basaveshwara on his Jayanti. An iconic thinker and pioneering social reformer, Bhagwan Basaveshwara worked throughout his life to make our society more inclusive. His emphasis on education and serving the poor continues to motivate millions.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) May 7, 2019
"Paying homage to the venerable Bhagwan Basaveshwara on his Jayanti. An iconic thinker and pioneering social reformer, Bhagwan Basaveshwara worked throughout his life to make our society more inclusive. His emphasis on education and serving the poor continues to motivate millions," he wrote.