The Ganesh Festival and Lokmanya Tilak
· Bringing Hindus together does not mean fostering enmity against the Muslims
· The religious festivals were initiated to give ethical, social and political education
Dr.Hari Desai writes weekly column “Heritage History” for “Asian Voice”, the Newsweekly of ABPL Group, London.24-30 August 2019 You may visit www.haridesai.com or https://bit.ly/2Ztxxtr or https://gzipurl.com/pOhYD7 to read the full text and comment.
Lokmanya Bal (Keshav) Gangadhar Tilak (23 July 1856-1 August 1920), a mathematician turned political activist and Indian mass leader, was known for his forthright views expressed against the British regime. Even while facing sedition cases, he was never afraid of going to jail. Even before Mahatma Gandhi rose in the political arena of Indian freedom movement, Tilak, though to somewhat orthodox, became acceptable all over India as mass leader. He would join hands with Barrister M.A. Jinnah in 1916 Congress Session at Lucknow and address him as the Messiah of Hindu-Muslim Unity following agreement named Lucknow Pact. Jinnah, who became a villain for demanding Pakistan in 1940 and getting his dream fulfilled in 1947, did appear before the Bombay High Court for Tilak being one of his closest friends. Tilak was Lokmanya (accepted by people as their leader) but the British authorities called him “The father of the Indian unrest”. He was to be the President of the Indian National Congress at Nagpur in 1920. His untimely death in August 1920 paved way for Mahatma Gandhi’s leadership in the Congress.