INDIA: Test of Faith

As disciple and spiritual heir of Mahatma Gandhi, frail and wispy Acharya Vinoba Bhave, born to India's Brahman caste, came to love the Untouchables. Like the Mahatma, he called them harijans, or "children of God." As he tramped across India's countryside, exhorting landowners to give up part of their holdings to landless peasants, the respected Bhave would visit the Untouchables in their outcast dwellings, and accept food from their hands. Slowly chipped at over the years, the Hindu practice of untouchability was declared illegal in the constitution which free India adopted in...

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