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Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam (born 15 October 1931 in Rameshwaram, Madras Presidency, Indian Empire), usually referred to as Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam, was the 11th President of India, serving from 2002 to 2007. He was elected during the tenure of the National Democratic Alliance (India) coalition government, under Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. During his term as President, he was popularly known as the People`s President.
Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan (1890 - 20 January 1988) was a Pashtun political and spiritual leader known for his non-violent opposition to British Rule in India. A lifelong pacifist, a devout Muslim, and a close friend of Mahatma Gandhi, he was also known as Badshah Khan (also Bacha Khan, Pashto: lit., "King Khan"), Fakhr-e-Afghan (pride of Afghans) and Sarhaddi Gandhi.
Ajmal Khan or Hakim Ajmal Khan (1863–1927) was a Unani physician and Indian Muslim nationalist politician and freedom fighter. He is credited for the revival of Unani medicine in India in early 20th century, by founding the Tibbia College in Delhi and also spotting Dr. Salimuzzaman Siddiqui, a chemist, whose subsequent research in important medicinal plants used in Unani Medicine gave it a new direction. A close associate of Gandhi, he participated in the Non-cooperation movement (Satyagraha); led Khilafat Movement, and also became the President of the Indian National Congress, of whose he presided Ahmedabad Session in 1921. He was one of the founders of the Jamia Millia Islamia University, and became its first chancellor in 1920 and remained so till his death in 1927.
Anil Kakodkar is an eminent Indian nuclear scientist and mechanical engineer. He was the chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission of India and the Secretary to the Government of India, Department of Atomic Energy. Before leading India's Nuclear Programme, he was the Director of the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Trombay from 1996-2000. He was awarded the Padma Vibhushan, India's second highest civilian honour, on January 26, 2009.
Anita Mazumdar Desai (born June 24, 1937) is an Indian novelist and Emeritus John E. Burchard Professor of Humanities at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She has been shortlisted for the Booker Prize three times, was awarded the Sahitya Akademi Award, in 1978 for her novel, "Fire on the Mountain" , by the Sahitya Akademi, India's National Academy of Letters.
Aruna Asaf Ali (July 16, 1909, Kalka, Haryana—July 29, 1996) (born Aruna Ganguli), was an Indian independence activist. She is widely remembered for hoisting the Congress flag at the Gowalia Tank maidan in Bombay during the Quit India Movement, 1942. She was 87 years old at the time of her death.
Arundhati Roy (born 24 November 1961) is an Indian novelist. She won the Booker Prize in 1997 for her novel, the God of Small Things, and has also written two screenplays and several collections of essays. Her writings on various social, environmental and political issues have been a subject of major controversy in India.
Bal Gangadhar Tilak (Born as Keshav Gangadhar Tilak) 23 July 1856(1856-07-23)–1 August 1920(1920-08-01) (aged 64), was an Indian nationalist, teacher, social reformer and independence fighter who was the first popular leader of the Indian Independence Movement. The British colonial authorities derogatorily called the great leader as "Father of the Indian unrest". He was also conferred with the honorary title of Lokmanya, which literally means "Accepted by the people (as their leader)". Tilak was one of the first and strongest advocates of "Swaraj" (self-rule) in Indian consciousness. His famous quote, "Swaraj is my birthright, and I shall have it!" is well-remembered in India even today.
Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay (27 June 1838 – 8 April 1894) ('Chattopadhyay' in the original Bengali; 'Chatterjee' as spelt by the British) was an Indian Bengali poet, novelist, essayist and journalist, most famous as the author of Vande Mataram or Bande Mataram, that inspired the freedom fighters of India, and was later declared the National Song of India.
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar (14 April 1891 — 6 December 1956), also known as Babasaheb, was an Indian jurist, political leader, Buddhist activist, philosopher, thinker, anthropologist, historian, orator, prolific writer, economist, scholar, editor, revolutionary and a revivalist for Buddhism in India. He was also the chief architect of the Indian Constitution.
Bipin Chandra Pal was an Indian nationalist. He was among the triumvirate of Lal Bal Pal. Born on 7 November 1858, in village Poil in the District of Sylhet, now in Bangladesh, Bipin Chandra belonged to a well-to-do Hindu Kayastha family, his father Ram Chandra Pal being a village zaminder, an eminent member of the Sylhet Bar and a man of status in the locality. Ram Chandra himself had no formal English education, but was a good Persian scholar and a strong-willed man. He was a Vaishnava by faith, but there was a blending of Hindu ritualism and Islamic thought in his religious views.
Chakravarti Rajagopalachari (10 December 1878 - 25 December 1972), informally called Rajaji or C.R., was an Indian lawyer, Indian independence activist, politician, writer, statesman and leader of the Indian National Congress who was the last Governor-General of India. He served as the Premier of the Madras Presidency, Governor of West Bengal, Minister for Home Affairs of the Indian Union and Chief Minister of Madras state. He was the founder of the Swatantra Party and was one of the first recipients of India's highest civilian award, the Bharat Ratna. Rajaji vehemently opposed the use of nuclear weapons and was a proponent of world peace and disarmament. He was also nicknamed the Mango of Salem.
Chānakya was an adviser to the first Maurya Emperor Chandragupt, and was the chief architect of his rise to power. Kautilya and Vishnugupta, the names by which the ancient Indian political treatise called the Arthaśāstra identifies its author, are traditionally identified with Chanakya. Chanakya has been considered as the pioneer of the field of economics and political science. In the Western world, he has been referred to as The Indian Machiavelli, although Chanakya`s works predate Machiavelli`s by about 1,800 years. Chanakya was a teacher in Takṣaśila, an ancient centre of learning, and was responsible for the creation of Mauryan empire, the first of its kind on the Indian subcontinent. His works were lost near the end of the Gupta dynasty and not rediscovered until 1915.
Chandrashekhar Sitaram Tiwari, better known as Chandrasekhar Azad (July 23, 1906, Bhavra – February 27, 1931, Allahabad) is one of the most important Indian revolutionaries, and is considered the mentor of Bhagat Singh.
Sir Chandrasekhara Venkata Raman, FRS (7 November 1888 – 21 November 1970) was an Indian physicist whose work was influential in the growth of science in India. He was the recipient of the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1930 for the discovery that when light traverses a transparent material, some of the light that is deflected changes in wavelength. This phenomenon is now called Raman scattering and is the result of the Raman effect.
Chittaranjan Das (C.R.Das) (popularly called Deshbandhu "Friend of the country") (November 5, 1870 - June 16, 1925) was an eminent Bengali lawyer and a major figure in the Indian independence movement.
Dadabhai Naoroji (4 September 1825 – 30 June 1917), known as the Grand Old Man of India, was a Parsi intellectual, educator, cotton trader, and an early Indian political leader. His book Poverty and Un-British Rule in India brought attention to the draining of India`s wealth into Britain. He was a Member of Parliament (MP) in the British House of Commons between 1892 and 1895, and the first Asian to be a British MP. He is also credited with the founding of the Indian National Congress, along with A.O. Hume and Dinshaw Edulji Wacha.
Dr Bhogaraju Pattabhi Sitaramayya was born in a Telugu 6000 Niyogi Brahmin family on November 24, 1880 in Gundugolanu village, Krishna district (now part of West Godavari district) in Andhra Pradesh, was an Indian independence activist and political leader in the state of Andhra Pradesh.
Dr. Rajendra Prasad (3 December 1884 – 28 February 1963) was the youngest son of Mahadev Sahay from the village Ziradei, then the Saran district of Bihar. Dr. Prasad is considered to be one of the architects of the Indian Republic, having drafted its first constitution and serving as the first president of free India.
Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan (5 September 1888 – 17 April 1975) was an Indian philosopher and statesman. He was the first Vice-President of India (1952–1962) and subsequently the second President of India (1962–1967).