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Google doodle honours Raja Ram Mohan Roy on his 246th birth anniversary

Roy fought against superstition, orthodoxy, the practice of Sati and campaigned for women's rights in the 19th century.

BS Web Team  |  New Delhi 

The evolution into a Reformist

The evolution into a Reformist
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| Photo : Google

was born on 22 May 1772 in Radhanagar village of Murshidabad district in West Bengal. He had differences with his father, a Hindu Brahmin, over Hindu religion and therefore; he left home at a very young age and travelled to Himalayas. On returning home, his parents married him off hoping this would change his outlook towards the religion.

Sought reforms within the Hindu religion

Sought reforms within the Hindu religion
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Brahmo Samaj | Photo : Wikimedia Commons

founded Brahmo Samaj in 1828. It believes in the existence of One Supreme God-having the personality and attributes of preserving the Universe-whose worship needs no fixed place or time. The followers of Brahmo Samaj, called Brahmo Samajists, do not believe in idol-worship, do not discriminate on the basis of caste, creed or religion. Fundamentally, his ideas of religion sought to create a fair and just society.

Shunned orthodoxy and fought many social evils

Shunned orthodoxy and fought many social evils
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A demonstration of the practice of Sati | Photo : Wikimedia Commons

He crusaded against the brutal practice of Sati, which forced women to immolate themselves on their husbands’ pyre. He also championed other women causes like right to property and the right to remarry. He also worked for eradicating other social evils like child marriage, illiteracy, caste system, infanticide, etc. from the society.

Education as a tool to eradicate social evils

Education as a tool to eradicate social evils
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Hindu College, now Presidency College | Photo : Wikimedia Commons

Raja Ram Mohan Roy considered education as an instrument to bring social reforms in the Hindu society marred with superstitious practices. According to him, these practices were the reasons because of which the British could claim moral superiority over India and justify its colonization. In 1817, he had set up Hindu College at Calcutta. In 1822, he founded Anglo-Hindu school followed by Vedanta College in 1826. These institutions taught his teachings of monotheism along with a modern-western curriculum.

Reformist till the last breath

Reformist till the last breath
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Raja Ram Mohan Roy | Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Raja Ram Mohan Roy died of meningitis in Bristol on 27 September 1833 and was buried in Arnos Vale Cemetery in Bristol. Three years before he died, he travelled to the United Kingdom as an ambassador of the Mughal Empire to ensure that Lord William Bentick’s proposal to abolish Sati did not get overturned.


First Published: Tue, May 22 2018. 14:38 IST
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