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Bal Gangadhar Tilak & Chandra Shekhar Azad

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Bal Gangadhar Tilak & Chandra Shekhar Azad

Bal Gangadhar Tilak

Born: 23 July 1856

Died: 1 August 1920

  • He born as Keshav Gangadhar Tilak, was an Indian nationalist, teacher, and an independence activist.
  • He was one-third of the Lal Bal Pal triumvirate.
  • He was the first leader of the Indian Independence Movement.
  • The British colonial authorities called him “The father of the Indian unrest.”
  • He was also conferred with the title of “Lokmanya”, which means “accepted by the people (as their leader)”.
  • He was one of the first and strongest advocates of Swaraj (“self-rule”) and a strong radical in Indian consciousness.
  • He is known for his quote in Marathi: “Swarajya is my birthright and I shall have it!”.
  • He formed a close alliance with many Indian National Congress leaders including Bipin Chandra Pal, Lala Lajpat Rai, Aurobindo Ghose, V. O. Chidambaram Pillai and Muhammad Ali Jinnah.
  • He had a long political career agitating for Indian autonomy from British rule.
  • Before Gandhi, he was the most widely known Indian political leader.
  • Unlike his fellow Maharashtrian contemporary, Gokhale, he was considered a radical Nationalist but a Social conservative.
  • He was imprisoned on a number of occasions that included a long stint at Mandalay.
  • At one stage in his political life he was called “the father of Indian unrest” by British author Sir Valentine Chirol.

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Chandra Shekhar Azad

Born: 23 July 1906

Died: 27 February 1931

  • He popularly known as by his self-taken name Azad (“The Free”), was an Indian revolutionary who reorganised the Hindustan Republican Association under its new name of Hindustan Socialist Republican Army (HSRA) after the death of its founder, Ram Prasad Bismil, and three other prominent party leaders, Roshan Singh, Rajendra Nath Lahiri and Ashfaqulla Khan.
  • He often used the pseudonym “Balraj” when signing pamphlets issued as the commander in chief of the HSRA (Hindustan Socialist Republic Army).
  • He made Jhansi his organization’s hub for some time.
  • He used the forest of Orchha, situated 15 kilometers (9.3 mi) from Jhansi, as a site for shooting practice and, being an expert marksman, he trained other members of his group.
  • He built a hut near to a Hanuman temple on the banks of the Satar River and lived there under the alias of Pandit Harishankar Brahmachari for a long period.
  • He taught children from the nearby village of Dhimarpura (now renamed Azadpura by the Government of Madhya Pradesh) and thus managed to establish a good rapport with the local residents.
  • While living in Jhansi, he also learned to drive a car at Bundelkhand Motor Garage in Sadar Bazar.
  • Sadashivrao Malkapurkar, Vishwanath Vaishampayan and Bhagwan Das Mahaur came in close contact with him and became an integral part of his revolutionary group.
  • The then congress leaders from Raghunath Vinayak Dhulekar and Sitaram Bhaskar Bhagwatwere also close to Azad.
  • He also stayed for some time in the house of Rudra Narayan Singh at Nai Basti, as well as Bhagwat’s house in Nagra.

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