RAJA MAHENDRA PRATAP SINGH
What is in news : PM Modi lays foundation stone of Raja Mahendra Pratap Singh University in UP’s Aligarh
- Born into the ruling Jat family of Mursan estate in Hathras in 1886.
- In 1907, the young Raja proceeded on a world tour with his wife, who was Sikh.
- On his return, the Raja gave up his own residence in Mathura to be converted into a technical school named Prem Mahavidyalaya in 1909. It is said to have been the country’s first polytechnic.
- After studying at the Government School in Aligarh, Raja Mahendra Pratap went to the Muhammadan Anglo-Oriental College in Aligarh, which later came to be called Aligarh Muslim University.
- Although he was unable to complete his graduation from the institution, Raja Mahendra Pratap’s name is counted among the prominent alumni of the university.
- As prominent notables of the area, Mahendra Pratap’s father and grandfather were close to the educationist and reformer Sir Syed Ahmad Khan, the founder of Aligarh Muslim University.
- Like many others in the region, the family contributed to Sir Syed’s efforts to set up the university. The family is said to have given land to AMU, some parts of which were donation, while other parts were granted on lease. Raja Mahendra Pratap too, gave land to various educational institutions.
Contribution to Freedom struggle
- On December 1, 1915, he proclaimed the first Provisional Government of India outside India at the historic Bagh-e-Babur in Kabul. He declared himself president, and his fiery fellow revolutionary Maulana Barkatullah of Bhopal, prime minister, of the Provisional Government.
- Mahendra Pratap subsequently travelled to various countries to gather support for the revolutionaries fighting for independence in India. He went to Germany, Japan, and Russia, and met the political leaders of those countries. He is said to have met Vladimir Lenin in 1919, two years after the Bolshevik Revolution.
- In 1929, Mahendra Pratap launched the World Federation in Berlin. He was nominated for the 1932 Nobel Peace Prize by the Swedish doctor N A Nilsson, who was a member of the Commission of the Permanent International Peace Bureau.
Later phase: In 1957, Raja Mahendra Pratap Singh contested the Lok Sabha election from Mathura, and was elected Member of Parliament after he defeated Chaudhary Digambar Singh, the Jat leader of the Congress, and the young Vajpayee. Mahendra Pratap Singh won over 40 per cent of the votes in that election.