Gopal Krishna Gokhale

Gopal Krishna Gokhale

9 May 1866
15 February 1915

Gopal Krishna Gokhale CIE was one of the political leaders and a social reformer during the Indian Independence Movement against the British Empire in India. Gokhale was a senior leader of the Indian National Congress and founder of the Servants of India Society.

Gokhale learned the value of self-sacrifice to avoid asking for more material support. At times he went without means and studied under the light of street lamps to save for his elder brother as much money as possible. A hardworking student, he moved on to college and graduated from Elphinstone College, Bombay in 1884 at the age of 18 earning a scholarship of Rs. 20 per month in his final year.

His education influenced Gokhale’s life in many ways. Primarily his understanding of the English language allowed him to espresso himself without hesitation and with utmost clarity. Also, his appreciation and knowledge of history instilled in him a respect for liberty, democracy and the parliamentary system.

Gokhale was very truthful in the whatever he did. His political wisdom and the straightforward nature made a great impression on Gandhiji, who accepted him as his mentor. Gandhiji considered Gokhale to be a perfect man.

It is said that Gokhale was one of the first Indians who completed graduation. Higher education made him understand the importance of liberty, democracy and parliamentary system. He wanted to widespread the knowledge he gained and so moved on to teaching. With strong command over English he was able to communicate with the Britishers but he also wanted local Indians to speak in a way that their voices are heard.

In 1902, Gopal Krishna Gokhale left the Fergusson College and became into a Member of the Imperial Legislative Council in Delhi itself.

In 1905 Gopal Krishna founded the Servants of India Society. It set the true ideals of service before the people. Gokhale was admired by all sections of people for his self-sacrifice and service. Even Jinnah aspired to become the Muslim Gokhale.