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Madan Mohan Malaviya Biography

Madan Mohan Malaviya Born on December 25, 1861, in an educated orthodox Hindu family, Pandit Madan Mohan Malaviya was a freedom fighter, an educationist and a social reformer with a vision of independent and self-reliant India. Apart from holding the post of the President of Indian National Congress, he represented India along with Mahatma Gandhi at the First Round Table Conference In 1931. Founder of the prestigious Banaras Hindu University (BHU) at Varanasi, he was also a social reformer and believed in egalitarianism. This philanthropist, also addressed as ‘Mahamana’, passed away in 1946. He has been posthumously honoured with Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian award, on 24 December 2014.

Early Life

Malaviya was born in Allahabad to Pandit Brij Nath and Moona Devi on 25 December 1861. His father was well-versed in Sanskrit scriptures, and used to recite the Bhagvat Katha on religious occasions. He received his early education at the Hardeva’s Dharma Gyanopadesh Pathshala and in 1879 did his matriculation from the Muir Central College, now christened as Allahabad University. He passed his LL.B. examination in 1891.

Malviya was married to Kundan Devi in 1878. Being a freedom fighter, he realised the need for a newspaper to educate the masses of India and started Abhyudaya, the Hindi weekly in 1907 and made it a daily in 1915. Apart from this, he also started a Hindi monthly, Maryada, and English daily Leader in 1909.

This educationist founded the Banaras Hindu University (BHU) or the Kashi Vishvidyalaya in 1915. He was also the founder and editor of the two national weeklies: Hindustan (Hindi) and the Indian Union (English). He functioned as the Chairman of The Hindustan Times from 1924 to 1946. He was nationalistic to the core and believed that the freedom from the foreign rule can be achieved only through right kind of education.

Political career

  • In December 1886, he participated in the second INC session in Kolkata. The session was chaired by Dadabhai Naoroji.
  • Served as the President of the INC in 1909, 1918, 1930 and 1932. A moderate leader, he opposed the separate electorates for Muslims under the Lucknow Pact of 1916
  • He was a member of the Imperial Legislative Council from 1912 to 1926. He fought the cases of 177 freedom fighters convicted to be hanged in the Chouri Choura case and was successful in the release of 156 persons.
  • In 1928, he was at the forefront of the protests against the Simon Commission. He played a significant role in the Non-cooperation Movement, opposing the British politics of appeasement and the Congress’s involvement in the Khilafat movement. He was a delegate at the First Round Table Conference held in 1930. On April 25, 1932 he was jailed for taking part in the Civil Disobedience Movement.

Professional Career

  • Malviya started English daily Leader in 1909, and headed it as Editor from 1909 to1911. He also started the Hindi newspaper Maryada in 1910.
  • Malaviya completed his LL.B. from Allahabad Law College and started practice in Allahabad District Court and subsequently at the High Court. He discontinued his legal practice in 1913 to serve the nation.
  • In 1924, he acquired English daily The Hindustan Times with the help of political leaders Lala Lajpat Rai, M. R. Jayakar and businessman G D Birla. As the Chairman of The Hindustan Times (1924 to 1946), he successfully launched the paper’s Hindi edition in 1936.

Social Work

  • Made efforts for the dismantling of caste and social barriers.
  • Organised a group of 200 dalits to demand entry into the Kalaram Temple on a Rath Yatra day.
  • Initiated scouting for native Indians in 2013 through the organisation Seva Samithi.


  • He is credited with popularising the slogan Satyamev Jayate, i.e. Truth alone will win.
  • Founded the Banaras Hindu University.
  • In his honour, a postage stamp was printed in 1961.
  • Malaviya National Institute of Technology (MNIT), Jaipur, has been named after him.


Facts about Madan Mohan Malaviya at a Glance

Born December 25, 1861 (Allahabad)
Died November 2, 1946 (Varanasi)
Father Brijnath, a learned man in Sanskrit scriptures, who used to recite the Bhagvat Katha to earn his living.
Mother Moona Devi
Marriage Got married at the age of 16 in 1878 to Kundan Devi
Sons Ramakant, Radhakant, Mukund and Govind
Daughters Rama and Malati
Youngest son His youngest son, Pt. Govind Malaviya, was a Member of Parliament and Vice-Chancellor of the Banaras Hindu University. He died in 1961.
Education Pandit Malaviya was admitted to Pandit Hardeva’s Dharma Gyanopadesh Pathshala at the age of 5. He started writing poems in the school under the pen name Makarand. He completed his matriculation in 1879 from the Muir Central College and graduated in arts from the University of Calcutta.
Biographies Malaviyaji by B. J. Akkad. Pub. Vora

Malaviyana: A Biography of Pandit Madan Mohan Malaviya, Sayaji Rao Gaekwad Library. Ed. Prithvi Nath Kaula

Role of Pt. Madan Mohan Malaviya in Our National Life, Chandra Prakash Jha, Modern Publications

Pandit Madan Mohan Malaviya: A Socio-political Study, Sundar Lal Gupta, Chugh Publications

Struggle for Independence: Madan Mohan Malaviya, Shri Ram Bakshi, Anmol Publications

Works A criticism of Montagu-Chelmsford Proposals of Indian Constitutional Reform, Printed by C. Y. Chintamani

Speeches and Writings of Pandit Madan Mohan Malaviya, Published by G.A. Natesan, 1919