October 16, 2013

Socio - Cultural Organisations in Indian History - for UPSC, APPSC Material, Bank PO & IBPS Exams General Awareness

Brahmo Samaj:
• Founded by Raja Ram Mohan Roy in 1828.
• Criticized Sati Pratha, casteism and advocated widow remarriage.
• He was opposed to Sanskrit system of education, because he thought it would keep the country in darkness.
• Other important leaders were Devendranath Tagore (father of Rabindranath Tagore) and Keshap Chandra Sen.

Arya Samaj:

• Founded by Swami Dayanand (or, Moolshankar) in 1875.
• His motto was ‘Go back to the vedas’ & ‘India for the Indians’. He disregarded Puranas, idol worship, casteism and untouchability. He advocated widow remarriage.
• Dayanand’s views were published in his famous work, Satyarth Prakash. He also wrote Veda Bhashya Bhumika and Veda Bhashya.

Ramakrishna Mission:

• Founded by Vivekanand (earlier, Narendranath Dutta) (1863 – 1902) in 1897, 11 years after the death of his guru Ram Krishna Paramhans.
• Vivekanand attended the Parliament of Religion at Chicago in 1893.
• Irish woman Margaret Nobel (Known as sister Nivedita) popularized it.

Young Bengal Movement:

• Founded by Henry Louis Vivian Derozio (1809-31). He was a teacher in Hindu College in Calcutta.
• He urged the students to live and die for truth. He also supported women’s education and their rights.

Veda Samaj:

• Veda Samaj called Brahmo Samaj of South. Started by Sridharalu Naidu.
• He translated books of Brahmo Dharma into Tamil and Telegu.

Dharma Sabha:

• Initiated by Radhakant Deb in 1830.
• Was opposed to reforms and protected orthodoxy, but played an active role in promoting western education even to girls.


• Started by Gopal Hari Deshmukh. Advocated western education and a rational outlook. He advocated female education for the upliftment of women.
• As a votary of national self-reliance, he attended Delhi durbar in 1876, wearing handspun khadi cloth.

Servants of India Society:

• Formed by Gopal Krishna Gokhale in 1915.
• It did notable work in providing famine relief and in improving the condition of the tribal.

Radhaswami Movement:

• Founded in 1861 by a banker of Agra, Tulsi Ram, popularly known as Shiv Dayal Saheb or Swami Maharaj.
• The sect preached belief in one supreme being, the Guru’s supreme position and a simple social life for the believers (the Satsangis).

Theosophical Society:

• Founded by Westerners who drew inspiration from Indian thought and culture.
• Madam H P Blavatsky laid the foundation of the movement in US in 1875. Later, Col.M.S. Olcott of the US Army joined her.
• In 1882, it was shifted to India at Adyar (Tamil Nadu).
• Annie Besant was elected its president in 1907. She founded the Central Hindu College in 1898, which became Banaras Hindu University in 1916.


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