Pandit Deendayal Upadhayay was people’s leader, statesman, Founder of Bhartiya Jan Sangh- and Propounder of Integral Humanism.
Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya was born on Monday September 25, 1916, (Ashwin Krishna Trayodashi, Samvat 1973) in the sacred region of Brij in the village of Nagla Chandraban in Mathura District. His full name was Deendayal Upadhyaya, but he was called Deena by the family. His mother Shrimati Rampyari was a religious-minded lady and his father, Shri Bhagwati Prasad, was Assistant Station Master at Jalesar. His great-grandfather, Pandit Hariram Upadhyaya was a well known astrologer. An astrologer who studied his horoscope predicted that the boy would become a great scholar and thinker, a selfless worker, and a leading politician - but that he would not marry. After his birth, two years later, his mother Shrimati Rampyari gave birth to her second son, Shivdayal. He lost his father Shri Bhagwati Prasad when he was less than three years old and his mother before he was eight.
Two years after his mother, Shrimati Rampyari's death, her father Shri Chunnilal, who was bringing up her two sons to his village Gud Ki Mandhai, near Fatehpur Sikri in Agra District, as a legacy of his dead daughter, also passed away in September 1926. Deendayalji was in his tenth year at that time. He was thus bereft of the love and affection of both his parents and his maternal grandfather. He started living with his maternal uncle. Deendayal's aunt was sensitive to the feelings of two brothers; she brought them up like her own children. She became a surrogate mother to the orphans. The ten-year-old Deendayalji became a guardian for his younger brother at that tender age; he looked after him and took care of all his needs. When he was in the ninth class and in his eighteenth year, his younger brother Shivdayal contracted smallpox. Deendayalji tried his best to save Shivdayal’s life by providing him all manner of treatment available at that time, but Shivdayal also died on Nov. 18, 1934. Deendayalji was thus left all alone in this world.
He later went to high school in Sikar. Maharaja of Sikar gave Pandit ji a gold medal, Rs. 250 for books and a monthly scholarship of Rs.10. Pandit ji passed his Intermediate exams with distinction in Pilani and left to Kanpur to pursue his B.A. and joined the Sanatan Dharma College. At the instance of his friend Shri. Balwant Mahashabde, he joined the RSS in 1937. In 1937, he received his B.A. in the first division. Pandit ji moved to Agra to pursue M.A.
Here he joined forces with Shri Nanaji Deshmukh and Shri Bhau Jugade for RSS activities. Around this time Rama Devi, a cousin of Deendayalji, fell ill, and she moved to Agra for treatment. She passed away. Deendayalji was very depressed and could not take the M.A. exams. His scholarships, received earlier from Maharajaj of Sikar and Birla Family were discontinued.
He took part in the struggle of Indian Independence through various modes and medium at the grassroot level, which has provided him scale to serve the needy- Further he continued the full-time work in the RSS from 1942. He had attended the 40-day summer vacation RSS camp at Nagpur where he underwent training in Sangh Education. After completing second-year training in the RSS Education Wing, Upadhyaya became a lifelong pracharak of the RSS. He worked as the pracharak for the Lakhimpur district and, from 1955, as the joint Prant Pracharak (regional organizer) for Uttar Pradesh. He was regarded as an ideal swayamsevak of the RSS essentially because ‘his discourse reflected the pure thought-current of the Sangh’.
In 1951, when Shyama Prasad Mookerjee founded the BJS, Deendayal was seconded to the party by the RSS, tasked with moulding it into a genuine member of the Sangh Parivar. He was appointed as General Secretary of its Uttar Pradesh branch, and later the all-India general secretary. For 15 years, he remained the outfit's general secretary. He also contested bi-poll election for the Lok Sabha seat of Jaunpur from Uttar Pradesh in 1963. In the 1967 general elections, the Jana Sangh got 35 seats and became the 3rd largest party in the Lok Sabha. The Jan Sangh also went onto to be a part of the Samyukta Vidhayak Dal, an experiment of having non-Congress opposition parties as a coalition to form governments in multiple states This brought the right and the left of the Indian political spectrum on one single platform. He became president of the Jana Sangh in December 1967 in the Calicut session of the party. Upadhyaya edited Panchjanya (weekly) and Swadesh (daily) from Lucknow. In Hindi, he wrote a drama on Chandragupta Maurya, and later wrote a biography of Shankaracharya. He translated a Marathi biography of Hedgewar as well.
Integral humanism was a set of concepts drafted by Upadhyaya as a political program and adopted in 1965 as the official doctrine of the Jan Sangh. Upadhyaya considered that it was of utmost importance for India to develop an indigenous economic model with a human being at center stage. This approach made this concept different from Socialism and Capitalism. Integral Humanism was adopted as Jan Sangh's political doctrine and its new openness to other opposition forces made it possible for the Hindu nationalist movement to have an alliance in the early 1970s with the prominent Gandhian Sarvodaya movement going on under the leadership of J. P. Narayan. This was considered to be the first major public breakthrough for the Hindu nationalist movement.