Union Home Minister Amit Shah today addressed the Indian Council of Cultural Relations (ICCR) online conference on Bal Gangadhar Tilak, marking 100 years since his death on August 1, 1920, he said freedom fighter Bal Gangadhar Tilak was the one who made the freedom struggle meaningful and truly Indian.
"Today is the day 100 years ago that we lost a great soul. I, on behalf of the entire country pay tribute to his soul. I would also appeal to the youth of the country that if they want to know anything about India and its history, then they must read about Tilak Maharaj," Union Home Minister Amit Shah said.
"Even today, his personality, his work, his thoughts and the traditions he started are as relevant as it was 100 years ago. Lokmanya Tilak‘s personality was a multi-faceted personality in itself. Despite the achievements, how can a person remain connected to the land, how can he make simplicity a part of his life, if he wants to see then he can see it from the life of Tilak Maharaj. " Amit shah added
Amit Shah urged the youth of the country to study Tilak’s speeches and life for inspiration. "I appeal to the youth of the country to read his autobiography at least once as many of life's problems would be solved. It would also provide you with a key to today's times," Union Home Minister added.
On the one hand, Tilak fought for Independence while campaigned against cow slaughter on the other. His influence was visible in the lives of Mahatma Gandhi, Veer Savarkar and Madan Mohan Malviya. He fought for women’s rights, published the Kesari newspaper and even turned Shiv Jayanti and Ganpati festivals into a public movement. “If anyone took the values of Shivaji Maharaj to the people, it was Tilak,” he said.
“He gave the call that Swaraj is my birthright and I will take it. This was no ordinary sentence. This brought a paradigm shift to the freedom struggle. It turned the movement launched by the Congress into a people’s movement,” Amit Shah mentioned.
Several dignitaries including Dr Vinay Sahasrabuddhe president of Indian Council of Cultural Relations, Tilak Maharashtra Vidyapeeth Vice-Chancellor Deepak Tilak and President of Deccan Education Society Dr Sharad Kunte were also present at the event.