On 7 November 1858, Bipin Chandra Pal also known as the ‘Father of Revolutionary Thoughts in India’ was born in Poil, a village in Habiganj District, present-day Bangladesh. This article will give brief details about his life.
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Biography of Bipin Chandra Pal
- Bipin Chandra Pal was born to Ramchandra Pal in the village of Poil. His family was a wealthy Hindu family. Pal’s father was a Persian scholar.
- He joined the Presidency College, Calcutta but could not complete his education there. He then started work as a headmaster. Later he became a librarian in a public library. It was here that he met several political leaders of the day like Surendra Nath Banerjee, Shivnath Shastri and B K Goswami.
- This interaction propelled him to quit his profession and join active politics.
- Pal was also inspired by the ideas of Lala Lajpat Rai, Bal Gangadhar Tilak and Aurobindo Ghosh.
- In 1898, he went to England to study comparative theology. He returned to India in one year and plunged into the freedom struggle.
- He started popularising the idea of ‘swaraj’ to Indians.
- Along with Lajpat Rai and Tilak, he preached an extremist form of nationalism that espoused revolutionary methods like boycotting British goods and shops, burning western clothes, and advocating strikes and lockouts of British factories. This trio was called ‘Lal-Bal-Pal’.
- Pal was sent to jail for six months for refusing to give evidence against Aurobindo Ghosh in the Bande Mataram sedition case.
- He was a brilliant orator and writer. He was also a journalist who used this platform to spread his message of patriotism and nationalism. He edited the journals ‘The Democrat’ and ‘The Independent’. He also started many newspapers and magazines such as ‘Paridarsak’, ‘Bande Mataram’, ‘New India’ and ‘Swaraj’.
- Some of the books he authored are ‘Indian Nationalism’, ‘Swaraj and the Present Situation, ‘Nationality and Empire’, ‘The Basis of Social Reform’, ‘The New Spirit and Studies in Hinduism’, and ‘The Soul of India’.
- He joined the Congress Party in 1886. He also participated in the Swadeshi movement and the non-cooperation movement. He agitated against the partition of Bengal of 1905.
- Pal was a fierce critic of Mahatma Gandhi and his pacifist ways. He was against the ‘Gandhi cult’ in the Congress party.
- In 1920, Pal was among the senior Congress leaders who opposed Gandhi’s resolution on non-cooperation over the fact that it didn’t address self-government.
- After his first wife passed away, he married a widow and joined the Brahmo Samaj, which, among other things, denounced the caste system. He was also an ardent proponent of gender equality.
- He retired from active politics in 1920. He continued to contribute to magazines till his death on May 20, 1932. He was 73 years old.
- Aurobindo Ghosh called Pal ‘one of the mightiest prophets of nationalism.
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