IMPORTANT NATIONAL LEADERS
Dadabhai Naoroji (1825-1917)
● He was the first Indian to demand
Swaraj in the Calcutta Session of INC,
● He was also known as the Indian
Gladstone, Grand Old Man of India.
● He was first Indian to be elected to the
House of Commons on Liberal Party
● He highlighted the draining of wealth
from India by the British and its effect
in his book Poverty and Un-British Rule
in India (1901).
Annie Besant (1847-1933)
● She founded the Theosophical Society
in India and started the Home Rule
● She established Central Hindu School
and College at Banaras (later BHU).
● She was elected the President of the
Calcutta Session of INC, 1917.
● She did not attend the 1920 Session at
Nagpur due to growing differences with
Gandhiji, as she felt that Government
of India Act, 1919 were a means to free
● She edited famous Newspapers — New
India and Commonweal.
● She prepared — The Lotus Song, a
translation of Gita into English.
Bal Gangadhar Tilak
● He was awarded with the title
● He established new English school at
Poona. He was the editor of Maratha in
English and Kesari in Marathi.
● He joined INC in 1891 and moved an
Arms Act Resolution.
● He celebrated the Ganapati pooja and the
● He collaborated with Agarkar and set up
institutions to give economically feasible
education to people.
● He was called Bal, Lala lajpat Rai was
called Lal and Bipin Chandra Pal was
● They were called as the trio of Lal, Bal,
Pal, an extremist group.
● He founded the Home Rule League in
1916 and helped in ushering the Lucknow
Pact and the Reforms Act at the Amritsar
Congress in 1919.
● He demanded swaraj and gave the slogan
Swaraj is my birth right and I shall have
● Valentine Chirol described him as the
Father of Indian unrest.
● He wrote the books The Artic Home of
Vedas and Gita Rahasya.
Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay
● He was a great scholar best known for the
composition of the hymn Bande Mataram.
● His first novel was Durgesnandini,
published in 1864 and he started the
Bipin Chandra Pal (1858-1932)
● He was awarded with the title Mightiest
Prophet of Nationalism by Aurobindo
● He supported the ‘Age of Consent Bill,
(1891), Swadeshi Movement and fought
for the cause of the Assam tea-gardeners.
● Half Naked Saint (by Franq Mores,
● Rashtrapita (by Subhash Chandra Bose,
● Birth 2nd October, 1869 at Porbandar in
● Mother Putali Bai.
● Father Karam Chand Gandhi.
● Political Guru Gopal Krishna Gokhale.
● Private Secretary Mahadev Desai.
● Influenced by John Ruskin (Unto the
last); Leo Tolstoy; Thoreau; Emerson; the
Bible; the Gita.
● As an Editor
● Indian Opinion (1903-15) in English,
Gujarati, Hindi and Tamil.
● Harijan (1919-31) in English, Gujarati
● Young India (1933-42) in English and
● Literary works
Hind Swaraj (1909)
My Experiments with Truth (Auto
Sarojini Naidu (1879-1949)
● Popularly known as the Nightingale of
India, she was a nationalist and poetess
from Uttar Pradesh.
● She was married to Dr Govindarajulu
Naidu in 1893.
● Under the guidance of Gopal Krishna
Gokhale, she became the first woman to
participate in the India’s struggle for
● She participated in the Dandi March with
Gandhiji and presided over the Kanpur
Session of Congress in 1925.
● She was the first woman to become the
Governor of Uttar Pradesh State.
● Her famous books include — The Golden
Threshold (1905), The Feather of the
Dawn; The Bird of Time (1912) and The
Broken Wing (1917).
● He was a politician and lawyer from Tamil
● He gave up his practice during
● He held the post of the
General-Secretary of the INC in
1921-1922 and was a member of
Congress Working Committee from
1922 to 1924.
● He started the Civil Disobedience
Movement in Tamil Nadu and was
arrested for leading a Salt March from
Trichinapoly to Vedaranniyam on the
● He was elected as the Chief Minister of
Madras in 1937 elections.
● He resigned from Indian National
Congress in 1942 for not accepting the
● He prepared the CR Formula for
● He served as the Governor of Bengal
(August-November, 1947) and was the
first and last Indian Governor-General
of India (1948-50).
● He became the Minister of Home
Affairs in the country’s first cabinet.
● He founded the Swatantra Party in
1959. His rational ideas are reflected in
the collection Satyameva Jayate.
● He was awarded with the Bharat Ratna
Dr Rajendra Prasad (1884-1963)
● He participated in Swadeshi Movement
(established Bihari Students,
Conference), Champaran Satyagraha,
Non-Cooperation Movement, Civil
Disobedience Movement and Quit India
● He founded the National College at
● He was elected as the Minister Incharge
of Food and Agriculture in the Interim
● He was the President of the Constituent
● He became the first President of the
Indian Republic. He was honoured with
Bharat Ratna in 1962.
● He edited the newspaper—Desh (Hindi
Jawaharlal Nehru (1889-1964)
● He became the General Secretary of the
Indian National Congress in 1928 and
its President in 1929.
● The Independence resolution was passed
under his Presidentship at the Lahore
● He was the first Prime Minister of
Republic India (from 1947 to 1964), also
known as Architect of Modern India. He
authored the Doctrine of Panchseel and
believed in the policy of non-alignment.
● Books—The Discovery of India,
Glimpses of World History, A Bunch of
Old Letters, The Unity of India,
Independence and After, India and the
● His autobiography was entitled as
Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar
● Dr Ambedkar was the great leader of the
depressed class and an eminent jurist.
● He set up a network of colleges in the
name of People’s Education Society.
● He founded the Depressed Classes
Institute (1924) and Samaj Samata
● He participated in all the Three Round
Table Conferences of London and signed
the Poona Pact with Gandhiji in 1932.
● He was in the Governor-General’s
Executive Council from 1942 to 1946
and organised the Indian Labour Party
and Scheduled Caste Federation.
● He became the Chairman of the Drafting
Committee of Indian Constitution.
● As the first Law Minister of the
Independent India, he introduced the
Hindu Code Bill.
● He started The Republican Party in 1956.
● He embraced Buddhism towards the end
of his life.
Subhash Chandra Bose
● He passed the Indian Civil Services
Examination in 1920 in England, but
left it on Gandhiji’s call of
● He founded the independence for India
League with Jawaharlal Nehru.
● He was elected as the President of INC
at its Haripura Session (1938) and
Tripuri Session (1939), but resigned
from Tripuri due to differences with
● He founded the Forward Bloc (1939)
and Kisan Sabha.
● He escaped to Berlin in 1941 and met
Hitler. He took the charge of Indian
Army (Azad Hind Fauz) in 1943 in
Singapore and set up Indian Provisional
● He addressed Mahatma Gandhi as the
Father of the Nation.
● He supposedly died in a plane crash in
● He gave the famous slogans — Dilli
Chalo and Jai Hind.
● The India Struggle was his
Bhagat Singh (1907-1931)
● He was a member of Hindustan Socialist
● He started the ‘Militant Naujawan
Bharat Sabha’ in Punjab.
● He killed British official Saunders in
1928 and was involved in Lahore
Conspiracy and bombed the Central
● He was executed on 23rd March, 1931.