Shri Bal Gangadhar Tilak was born at Ratnagiri on July 23, 1856.
He came from a royal family, but his father was a humble school teacher.
The step beyond is to serve humanity and the next step is to serve God.” * Bal Gangadhar Tilak was a strong critic of the Western education system, feeling it demeaned the Indian students and disrespected India’s heritage.
He organized the Deccan Education Society with a few of his college friends, including Gopal Ganesh Agarkar, Mahadev Ballal Namjoshi and Vishnu Krishna Chiplunkar whose goal was to improve the quality of education for India’s youth.
* He led a simple life, and offered himself- his body and soul, to the service of his country. In many ways he was the architect of India’s Freedom Struggle.
His ideas and efforts were carried on by equally worthy next generation of leaders Gandhi ji, Patel, Nehru and others.Early Life: * When Tilak was ten years old, the family moved from Ratnagiri to Poona (modern day Pune).The move proved beneficial for Bal Gangadhar Tilak’s education.It is his principled and unrelenting personality that earned him the title of ‘Lokmanya’.The tough and fiery journalism of Lokmanya Tilak was instrumental in initiating the movement during pre-independence period for bringing about change in the mental setup of the people.* The Deccan Education Society was set up to create a new system that taught young Indians nationalist ideas through an emphasis on Indian culture.Tilak began a mass movement towards independence that was camouflaged by an emphasis on a religious and cultural revival. * The concept of “Swaraj” was unfamiliar and Tilak thought a good education could promote patriotism.Tilak was arrested in 1905 and sent to Mandalay jail fore 6 years.When he was released, he started the Home Rule movement.* He was a traditionalist- both personally and ideologically.For him, throwing the Britishers out was the first priority. He dressed in a dhoti, a shirt, a shawl on the shoulder and a red 'Pagadi' (a Marathi cap) on his head.