Dadabhai Naoroji

(1825—1917) politician

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(b. 4 Sept. 1825, d. 30 June 1917).

Indian politician Born in Bombay, he became professor of mathematics in 1854. Naoroji was an ardent social reformer, promoting women's education and criticizing the caste system. He went to London in 1855, and subsequently shuttled back and forth between the two countries. He was the first Indian to be appointed professor at the Elphinstone College (Bombay), and in 1856–66 was professor of Gujarati at University College, London. He worked tirelessly for better British understanding of India, founding the British India Society in 1865, over which he presided until 1907. He was a founding member of the Indian National Congress, whose president he was in 1886, 1893, and 1906. He was also the first (Liberal) Member of Parliament in Britain (1892–5), sitting for Finsbury, to represent the case of India at Westminster. To this end, he gave evidence to a variety of Royal Commissions, and was himself a member of the Welby Commission (Royal Commission on Indian Expenditure) from 1897. Known as the Grand Old Man of India, he was one of the outstanding Indian public figures from 1845 to his death. The most important outline of his views was published as Poverty and Un‐British Rule in India (1901).

Subjects: Contemporary History (Post 1945).

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