Bal Gangadhar Tilak- UPSC Prelims

  • Bal Gangadhar Tilak: He was an Indian nationalist, teacher and an independence activist. He was also conferred with the title of Lokmanya.
  • As Educationist:
    • He founded the Deccan Education Society in 1884 along with his associate Gopal Ganesh Agarkar and others to create a new system of education that taught young Indians nationalist ideas through an emphasis on Indian culture.
    • The Society also established the Fergusson College in 1885 for post-secondary studies.
  • Indian National Congress(INC):
    • Tilak joined the Indian National Congress in 1890.He opposed moderate attitude. He along with Lala Lajpat Rai and Bipin Chandra Pal was part of the Lal-Bal-Pal trio of leaders with extremist outlooks.
  • Home Rule League: Tilak helped found the All India Home Rule League in 1916–18 with G. S. Khaparde and Annie Besant.
  • Tilak’s Home Rule League worked in Maharashtra, Central Provinces and Karnataka and Berar region. Besant’s League was active in the rest of India.
  • Newspapers: Kesari (Marathi) and Mahratta (English)
  • Books: Shrimadh Bhagvad Gita Rahasya and Arctic Home of the Vedas.
  • Significance:
    • The declaration of Tilak “Swaraj is my birthright, and I shall have it” served as an inspiration for future revolutionaries during India’s struggle for freedom.
    • A book ‘Indian Unrest’ written by Valentine Chirol, an English journalist stated Tilak the ‘father of Indian unrest’.

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