Pali scholar Bhalchandra Khandekar passes away

Pali scholar Bhalchandra Khandekar passes away

Nagpur, Nov 22 (PTI) Dr Bhalchandra Khandekar, a Pali scholar who was fighting a legal battle for the inclusion of Pali language into the schedule of languages, has passed away, his family said.

Khandekar (81), a former head of the Pali and Prakrit department of PWS College, Nagpur University, died on Monday following a brief illness, said his elder brother Tarachandra Khandekar.

He had filed a Public Interest Litigation demanding that Pali be included in the Constitution's eighth schedule which deals with the official languages in India, and brought back into the list of optional subjects in the UPSC examinations. The PIL is pending before the Nagpur bench of the Bombay High Court.

He was also instrumental, in 1995, in the organisation of the All India Buddhist Conference at Deekshabhoomi here, where dacoit-turned-politician Phoolan Devi embraced Buddhism.

Dr Khandekar had received the Pali Vibhushan award instituted by Kulguru Kalidas Sanskrit University, Ramtek for his contribution to Pali. PTI CLS KRK

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