Although the Swadeshi Movement of 1903-1909 was centered in Bengal, it had a counterpart at the other end of the country, one with deep historical roots. Colonial Bombay, Poona, and western India in general played a towering role in the movement. Aside from the intellectual contributions of leaders like Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Mahadev Govind Ranade, and Dadabhai Naoroji, ordinary Indians pioneered swadeshi ideas and industries from the 1870s onwards. They forged together ideas of enterprise, patriotism, and self-reliance, setting the stage for prolonged swadeshi activism under Mahatma Gandhi's leadership. At our Online Talk #BombaySwadeshi, part of our month-long #MumbaiSwaraj exhibition on Mumbai’s role in the freedom struggle on the occasion of 75 years of independence, historian Dr Dinyar Patel discusses the region’s role in the movement.
About the speaker
Dr Dinyar Patel is Assistant Professor of History at the SP Jain Institute of Management and Research in Mumbai. He is the author of Naoroji: Pioneer of Indian Nationalism (Harvard University Press, 2020).