Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak: 10 facts you probably don’t know about the Indian Nationalist

“Swarajya is my birthright, and I shall have it!" is the famous slogan of Bal Gangadhar Tilak. Tilak, better known as Lok Manya Tilak was a prominent social reformer, lawyer, teacher, journalist and an Indian Nationalist.

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Bal Gangadhar tilak. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons
  • Tilak was among the first Indian generation who received education by earning matriculation in 1872, BA in Maths in 1877 and LL.B degree from Governmental college in 1879
  • His book “Gita-Rahasya” was written by him during six years imprisonment in Burma (now Myanmar)
  • Tilak’s funeral was organised in Mumbai at Chowpatty. His funeral was attended by more than 2 lakh people including Mahatma Gandhi, which was the largest in the Indian history

Swarajya is my birthright, and I shall have it!” is the famous slogan of  Bal Gangadhar Tilak. Tilak, better known as Lok Manya Tilak was a prominent social reformer, lawyer, teacher, journalist and an Indian Nationalist. Tilak was born in a well-cultured family on 23rd July 1856. PM Modi, yesterday, paid tribute to Tilak on his 160th Birth Anniversary. Although such things are known by the majority, there exist some facts unknown and unseen.

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Here are the 10 facts that you probably don’t know about the Indian Nationalist, Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak-



  • Tilak was an English and Maths teacher in a school co-founded by him in 1880. The success of the school led to the formation of the Deccan Educational Society and Fergusson College in 1884 and 1885 respectively.

Fergusson College, Pune. Image Source: www.collegeaffairs.in
Fergusson College, Pune. Image Source: www.collegeaffairs.in

  • Tilak was among the first Indian generation who received education by earning matriculation in 1872, BA in Maths in 1877 and LL.B degree from Governmental college in 1879. Unfortunately, he was unable to become a postgraduate after failing two attempts.

Tilak obtained LL.B degree from Goverment Law college. Image Source: lawmantra.co.in
Tilak obtained LL.B degree from Goverment Law college. Image Source: lawmantra.co.in

  • Tilak along with Jamsetji TATA, encouraged the Co-Op stores Co. Limited to become a client of Swadeshi goods in 1900 and that store is now known as The Bombay Store.

Jamsetji Tata. Image Source: economictimes.indiatimes.com
Jamsetji Tata. Image Source: economictimes.indiatimes.com

  • Tilak spent his most of time reading and writing in prison. His book “Gita-Rahasya” was written by him during six years imprisonment in Burma (now Myanmar).

Geeta Rahasya by Lokmanya Tilak. Image Source: Flipkart.com
Geeta Rahasya by Lokmanya Tilak. Image Source: Flipkart.com

  • Tilak was not only the first leader to start a nationalist movement against Britishers but also one of the first leaders who came up with the concept of ‘Swaraj’ and made it a part of the independence movement.

Swarajya- an initiative by Lokmanya Tilak. Image Source: YouTube
Swarajya- an initiative by Lokmanya Tilak. Image Source: YouTube

  • Tilak was also against the Age of Consent Act 1891. He carried out many protests to oppose the bill almost at every level so that the government would regulate the bill.

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  • Tilak was the first to find the origin of the Vedas. In his book titled ‘The Arctic Home in the Vedas’ he stated that Vedas were first composed in the Arctic region. Tilak believed that Mount Meru, discussed in Mahabharata, was situated in North Pole.

"Arctic Home in Vedas" by B.G. Tilak. Image Source:
“Arctic Home in Vedas” by B.G. Tilak. Image Source:

  • Until 1893, Ganesh Chaturthi was celebrated in the houses only. It was Tilak who urged people to encourage public unity and changed it into a public festival.

Tilak made Ganesh Chaturthi a public festival. Image Source: YouTube
Tilak made Ganesh Chaturthi a public festival. Image Source: YouTube

  • Tilak was known for his sacrifices and highest sense of renunciation. He sacrificed the wealth, comforts, family, happiness and health for his beloved ‘Mother India’.

Tilak funeral attended by more than 2 lakh people. Image Source: Twitter
Tilak funeral attended by more than 2 lakh people. Image Source: Twitter

  • Tilak’s funeral was organised in Mumbai at Chowpatty. His funeral was attended by more than 2 lakh people including Mahatma Gandhi, which was the largest in the Indian history.

-prepared by Aparna Gupta, an intern with NewsGram. Twitter @writetoaparna99

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