Bhai Madhavrao Bagal
Born28 May 1895
Died6 March 1986
Kolhapur, India
Occupation(s)Painter, writer, independence activist and politician
Known forFreedom fighter, social reformer, political activist, politician, Satyashodhak, Gandhian, Writer, Orator, Painter

Madhavrao Khanderao Bagal (28 May 1895 – 6 March 1986), also called Bhai Madhavrao Bagal, was a noted writer, artist, journalist, social reformer, political activist, orator and freedom fighter from Kolhapur.[1][2]

Early life

He was born on 28 May 1895[3] in Kolhapur to Khanderao Bagal.[4]

His father Khanderao Bagal was a renowned pleader, tehsildar and also a social reformer. Khanderao was a leader of Satyashodhak Samaj[5] and editor of a newspaper named "Hunter" and hence was also known as "Hunterkar".[6]

He received his early education at the Rajaram High School, Kolhapur and later completed painting, modelling and mural decoration courses from J. J. School of Art, Bombay.[2][4]


Madhavrao Bagal, created his own style of painting with expressing light and shade through minimal colors. The environment created in his painting is beautiful. He has written two books namely Artists of Kolhapur and Art and Artists that talk about art and artists in Kolhapur.[7]

Social reformer

As a social reformer, he worked for up-liftment of Dalits and advocated they be allowed right to visit temple and mingling with other castes.[1] His father was staunch Satyashodhak and Madhavrao followed his footsteps and way back in 1927, he declared that Satyashodhaks should become Socialists.[8] He was instrumental in installation of the first ever bust/statue of emancipator Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar.

Political activist

As a political activist he founded Praja Parishad in Kolhapur State in 1939[4] and took efforts of awaken farmers of Kolhapur and raise their voice against unjust revenues by way of agitation, in which his chief companion was Ratnappa Kumbhar and others.[9]

In 1941, when local self-government was instituted in erstwhile Princely State of Kolhapur, the Kolhapur Municipal Corporation was put under control board of three persons — Madhavrao Bagal, Govindrao Korgaonkar and Ratnappa Kumbhar.

Freedom fighter

He was among the front runner leaders, who spearheaded the agitation for independence of India and especially merger of Kolhapur State into the Union of India. He was arrested with several of his compatriots like Ratnappa Kumbhar, Dinakara Desai, Nanasaheb Jagadale, R. D. Minche and others. He joined Indian National Congress in the mid-1930s, disillusioned by pro-British politics played by older leaders of peasants movement like Bhaskarrao Jadhav, with whom Madhavrao had started agricultural co-operative societies in Kolhapur and adjoining regions.[10] During 1940-47, he was closely working with leaders like Mahatma Gandhi, Vallabhbhai Patel, Jawaharlal Nehru.[11]

After independence

He was one of the front-runner leaders from Dhangar ( Maratha )community, who jointly formed Peasants and Workers Party in year 1947 with other former congressman such as Keshavrao Jedhe of Pune, Shankarrao More of Pune, Kakasaheb Wagh of Nasik, Nana Patil of Satara, Tulsidas Jadhav of Solapur, Dajiba Desai of Belgaum, P K Bhapkar and Datta Deshmukh of Ahmadnagar, Vithalrao Hande and others.[12]


He is author of about 30-35 books some of which are Kalāvihāra (1966), Bahujanasamājāce śilpakāra (1966), Jīvana saṅgrāma; agara, siṃhāvalokana (1970), Sahavāsāntūna (1970), Bhāī Mādhavarāvajī, nivaḍaka lekhasaṅgraha (1998).[13]


He died on 6 March 1986.[1]


The following institutions have been named after his as memorials:-

Further reading


  1. ^ a b c S. R. Kakade (1990). Scheduled Castes and National Integration: A Study of Marathwada. Radiant Publishers. Retrieved 2 March 2015.
  2. ^ a b Who's who in Western India. Sun Publishing House. 1934. Retrieved 20 March 2015.
  3. ^ Bagal Bhai Madhavrao Khanderao, freedom fighter, author and painter, was born.
  4. ^ a b c Durga Das Pvt. Ltd (1985). Eminent Indians who was who, 1900-1980, also annual diary of events. Durga Das Pvt. Ltd. Retrieved 2 March 2015.
  5. ^ Chhatrapati Shahu, the piller of social democracy by Pī. Bī Sāḷuṅkhe, M. G. Mali. Education Dept., Govt. of Maharashtra for President, Mahatma Phule Vishwabharati. 1994. pp. 82–83. Retrieved 17 March 2015.
  6. ^ Freedom movement in princely states of Maharashtra by Arun Bhosale, Ashok S. Chousalkar, Lakshminarayana Tarod. Shivaji University. 2001. p. 100,116. Retrieved 17 March 2015.
  7. ^ History of Art in Maharshtra Archived 2 April 2013 at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ "Freedom Movement in Princely States of Maharashtra". 2001.
  9. ^ Arun Bhosale; Ashok S. Chousalkar; Lakshminarayana Tarodi; Shivaji University (2001). Freedom movement in princely states of Maharashtra. Shivaji University. Retrieved 2 March 2015.
  10. ^ V. D. Divekar; G. T. Kulkarni; M. R. Kantak (1991). Social Reform Movements in India: A Historical Perspective. Bharat Itihas Samshodhak Mandal. p. 80. ISBN 978-81-7154-561-2. Retrieved 5 March 2015.
  11. ^ Bombay (India : State). Committee for a History of the Freedom Movement in India; Maharashtra (India). Committee for History of the Freedom Movement in India (1980). Source material for a history of the freedom movement in India. Printed at the Govt. Central Press. pp. 91, 294, 301. Retrieved 5 March 2015.
  12. ^ P. K. Ravindranath (1 February 1992). Sharad Pawar, the making of a modern Maratha. UBS Publishers' Distributors. p. 22. ISBN 978-81-85674-46-9. Retrieved 5 March 2015.
  13. ^ Pandurang Ganapati Patil (2002). The Bountiful Banyan: A Biography of Karmaveer Bhaurao Patil. Macmillan India. pp. 69, 76, 210, 315. ISBN 978-0-333-93689-4. Retrieved 5 March 2015.
  14. ^ a b "Dr Salunkhe gets Bhai Madhavrao Bagal award". One India. 22 May 2007. Retrieved 5 March 2015.
  15. ^ "Bhai Madhavrao Bagal Kanya Prashala school, K|-bawada Hanuman Talaw, Kolhapur taluk school | FreeTutorial.In -Find your School".
  16. ^ "भाई माधवराव बागल पुरस्कार सुरेश शिपूरकर यांना जाहीर". 22 May 2013. Retrieved 5 March 2015.