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Tribhuvandas Kishibhai Patel
|Died||3 June 1994 (aged 90)|
|Spouse||Shrimati Mani Laxmi|
|Awards||Padma Bhushan (1964) |
Ramon Magsaysay Award (1963)
Tribhuvandas Kishibhai Patel (22 October 1903 - 3 June 1994) was an Indian independence activist, lawyer, and politician. A follower of Mahatma Gandhi, he is regarded as the father of the cooperative movement in India, most notably in the Kaira District Co-operative Milk Producers' Union in 1946, and the Anand Co-operative movement.
Early life and activism
Born on 22 October 1903, in Anand, Gujarat, to Kishibhai Patel, Tribhuvandas became a follower of Mahatma Gandhi and Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel during the Indian independence movement, and especially the civil disobedience movements, which led to his repeated imprisonment in 1930, 1935 and 1942.
By the late 1940s, he started working with farmers in Kheda district, under the guidance of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, and after setting up the Kaira District Co-operative Milk Producer's Union in 1946 under his chairmanship, he hired Verghese Kurien in 1950, who was instrumental in developing the technical and marketing strategies of the Union which was eventually called Amul. Verghese Kurien remained the general manager of Amul till 2005. Under Tribhuvandas Patel's leadership and guidance and together with Verghese Kurien, many organizations were started in Anand including the Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation, National Dairy Development Board and Institute of Rural Management Anand.
Tribhuvandas Patel was awarded the 1963 Ramon Magsaysay Award for 'Community Leadership', together with Dara Nusserwanji Khurody, and Verghese Kurien., and the Padma Bhushan from the Govt. of India in 1964.
Under the leadership of Tribhuvandas Patel, in August 1973, Amul celebrated its 25th anniversary with Morarji Desai, Maniben Patel and Verghese Kurien. When he voluntarily retired from the Chairmanship of AMUL, in the early 1970s, he was presented with a purse of six hundred thousand rupees, by the grateful members of the village cooperatives — one rupee per member being the contribution. He used this fund to start a charitable trust and NGO, named the Tribhuvandas Foundation, to work on women and child health in the Kheda district of Gujarat. He was the first Chairman of Tribhuvandas Foundation. He handed over the chairmanship to Verghese Kurien, when the organization started to grow quickly, after receiving funds from foreign grant s.
The former chairperson of the National Dairy Development Board, Amrita Patel remarked in her opening address at an event at the Institute of Rural Management Anand about the Tribhuvandas Foundation saying "[Tribhuvandas Foundation] works in over 600 villages in the state of Gujarat in the field of maternal and infant care. What is unique about the programme of the Foundation is that it rides on the back of milk. It is the village milk co-operative that appoints a village health worker and pays an honorarium to the village health worker to undertake the work. So it is milk paying for health."
Patel was active until his death, working to set up cooperative organizations for farming commodities such as oil. In the days leading to his passing on June 3, 1994, thousands of farmers from all over Kaira visited him, assuring him that the movement started in 1946 will be continued. In these last days, he frequently asked about Kurien who, despite the urgency conveyed to him, never visited him before his passing. More incidents and details about Patel's life remain unheard, partly due to the lack of translation from the native Gujarati language.
On finding out about the financial struggle and shelving faced by the production of a film on his mentor Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel titled Sardar, Patel made the financial contributions necessary to have the film completed and released. It is unknown if he watched the film.
Awards and honours
He was married to Shrimati Mani Laxmi, and had one daughter and six sons. He had several grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and great-great-grandchildren.
- "Amul remembers Tribhuvandas on his birth anniversary". Indian Cooperative. 23 October 2019. Retrieved 10 March 2021.
- Biography of Tribhuvandas K. Patel Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation Official website.
- Amul : Evolution of Marketing Strategy Marketing Case Studies.
- Awards Official listings Govt. of India Portal.
- Previous Members Profile Rajya Sabha Official website."21/07/1967 - 02/04/1968 and 03/04/1968 - 02/04/1974, Gujarat, INC."
- "Opening Address". www.ilri.org. Archived from the original on 17 October 2008.
- "Padma Awards" (PDF). Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India. 2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 October 2015. Retrieved 21 July 2015.
- Profile of Tribhuvandas K. Patel on 'Ramon Magsaysay Award Site'
- Magsaysay Award Profile
- AMUL's 25th Anniversary Celebrations