Ex-President Kalam lavished praise on this person's model of development calling it "the most apt model for rural India". Kalam also mentioned this model in his books and talks.
This person refused cabinet berth at a ti me when he was one of the tallest leaders and could have taken a very rewarding ministry. Reason - he wanted to implement his model of development in Chitrakoot on UP and MP border and take it elsewhere.
He gave the nation a litigation free district where all disputes are settled amicably
Highly influenced by Vinoba Bhave and Jayaprakash Narayan, he is supposed to have taken the lathis on him to save JP.
He spent a long time in jail in this fight against emergency and for democracy in the country.
In short, the man has done everything that makes him a Mahatma as JP used to call him fondly. The person is or rather was, Shri Nanaji Deshmukh. He passed away on 27th Feb 2010 amidst the same rural people with whom he had been staying for last 3 decades. The tallest leader Jan Sangh (now BJP) alongwith Vajpayee and Advani, Nanaji felt the call of his service much more tempting that trappings of power. He worked tirelessly and died working. Here's a tribut to the great man for whom Kalam said "What he does at his age, should be an eye opener for rest of the country"
To know more about him, visit - en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nanaji_Deshmukh