The Congress met in abspecial session in September 1920 at Calcutta. Only a few weeks earlier it had suffered a grievous loss—Lokamanya Tilak had passed away on 1 August at the age of 64.⁣

A grief-stricken Gandhi wrote in Young India on August 4, 1920: “A giant among men has fallen. The voice of the lion is hushed…His patriotism was a passion with him. He knew no religion but love of his country. He was a born democrat. …He had an iron will, which he used for his country. His life was an open book. His tastes were simple. His private life was spotlessly clean. No man preached the gospel of Swaraj with the consistency and the insistence of Lokmanya.”⁣

See what other personalities thought about Tilak:⁣

“No man of our times had the hold on the masses that Mr Tilak had.”⁣

– Mahatma Gandhi, in his obituary for Lokmanya Tilak in Young India, August 4, 1920⁣

“The greatest Indian of the day… indomitable Tilak, who would not bend though he break.”⁣

– Jawaharlal Nehru, in An Autobiography⁣

“Tilak is at the moment probably the most powerful man in India.”⁣

– Edwin Samuel Montagu, British Secretary of State for India between 1917 and 1922, in An Indian Diary⁣

Bal Gangadhar Tilak was called ‘father of the Indian unrest” by British colonial rulers. ⁣

He ignited patriotic consciousness among the masses during one of the most difficult periods in the freedom struggle. ⁣

No nation attains greatness without pride in its history, and pride comes with self-knowledge. Knowledge about the great moments, great achievements and great personalities in a nation’s history. ⁣

We pay tribute to Lokamanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak on his 100th death anniversary. Lokmanya’s spirit as a freedom fighter, his principles for economic self-reliance will continue to be the guiding force in making a new India. Swaraj and Swadeshi products are still something we need to keep in mind in the times of free markets.⁣

Even a hundred years later, his thoughts are relevant to modern times.⁣