Gopal Ganesh Agarkar

Gopal Ganesh Agarkar
Gopal Ganesh Agarkar
Born (1856-07-14)14 July 1856
Tembhu, Satara district, Maharashtra, British India
Died 17 June 1895(1895-06-17) (aged 38)
Pune, India
Organization Deccan Education Society

Gopal Ganesh Agarkar (14 July 1856 – 17 June 1895) was an Indian social reformer, educationist, and thinker from Maharashtra, British India.

At one time a close associate of Bal Gangadhar Tilak, he was a co-founder of educational institutes such as the New English School, the Deccan Education Society and Fergusson College along with Tilak, Vishnushastri Chiplunkar, Mahadev Ballal Namjoshi, V. S. Apte, V. B. Kelkar, M. S. Gole and N. K. Dharap. He was the first editor of the weekly Kesari and founder and editor of a periodical, Sudharak. He was the second Principal of Fergusson College and served that post from August-1892 until his death, aged around 39.

Early life

Gopal Ganesh Agarkar was born in a Koknastha Brahman family[1] on 14 July 1856 in Tembhu, a village in Karad taluk, Satara district, Maharashtra. He was a friend of Nilkanth Tidke[2]

Agarkar was schooled in Karad and then worked as a clerk in a court there.,In 1878, he got his B. A. degree, and in 1880 was awarded an M.A.

Achievements and philosophy

He was the first editor of Kesari, a prominent Marathi-language weekly newspaper that had been founded by Lokmanya Tilak in 1880-81. Ideological differences with Tilak caused him later to leave: they disagreed regarding the primacy of political reform versus social reform; with Agarkar believing that the need for social reform was more immediate. He started his own periodical, Sudharak, in which he campaigned against the injustices of untouchability and the caste system. Agarkar abhorred blind adherence to and glorification of tradition and the past. He supported widow re-marriage. Though Agarkar championed social reforms he tolerated his wife's observation of the traditions of Hinduism.[3]


Agarkar writes in his biography in the "Futke Nashib" that he was the only social worker who witnessed his own funeral, He has also written a book 'Alankar Mimmansa' (अलंकार मीमांसा).

His death was attributed to asthma onJuly 2


  1. Y D Phadke [य. दि. फडके]. "Shodh: Baal-Gopaalancha [शोध: बाळ-गोपाळांचा]". ShreeVidyaa Prakashan, Pune, India.
  2. Anonymous. "Gopal Ganesh Agarkar". "Social Reformers". Maharashtra Navnirman Sena. Archived from the original on 6 October 2011. Retrieved 24 October 2010.
  3. Tarique, Author. Modern Indian History. Tata McGraw-Hill. p. 8.10. ISBN 978-0-07-066030-4. Retrieved 24 October 2010.

Further reading

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