Dr. Annie Besant (1893 -1933) and Her Roleplay to Socieo-Politics Reform

Mr. Surender


Dr. Annie Besnat was a mighty spirit. She went round the world frequently and inspired millions of people through lucid speeches. By her many sided activities and relentless work, Annie Besnat had almost become a legend in her own time. She influenced a generation of great persons all over who included great thinkers and scholars, by her magnificent acumen. Motilal Nehru became a Theosophist as a result of Annie Besant's influence over him. Later he became an active Home Leaguer in Allahabad. Many statesmen and great leaders like Mohd. Ali, Jinna, Srinivasa Iyer, C.P.Ramaswamy Iyer etc., was influenced by her. Most of them became active participants in Home Rule league later. For most Indians, Dr. Besant was known as 'Mother'. She had many affectionate titles like Bari Mem Sahib The big European Lady. In south, people called and adored her as 'Vasanthamma' and 'Anna Bai'. Together with her national educational social and cultural work and woman suffrage movement, Annie Besant added the Home Rule Movement into her national programme, after being inspired by the Irish Home Rule movement. She made efforts to unite different wings in Indian politics. She brought Gokhele and Tilak together on to a single political platform. She caused the Lucknow pact which brought the Hindu Muslim leaders together and tried to bring the Home Rule League and Congress together. She was the first lady to preside over the Indian National Congress. She was the first to plead for Dominion Status and she had taken her own 'Commonwealth of Indian Bill' even up to the House of Commons in London. Dr. Besant was not a mere individual. She was a multi-dimensional character. She was an incessant crusader for human dignity, freedom and brotherhood. History has had very few parallels like Dr. Annie Besant who with her Universalism, religious toleration and respect for human rights never hesitated to revolt against racial discrimination, oppression and exploitation. At a time when aping of the west was the order of the day in India, Dr. Besant taught people how to stand on their own with courage and conviction against all odds. It is no exaggeration to say that the self confidence she inculcated among the Indians stood in good stead in their fight against the British during their struggle for freedom.

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