Source: Eminent Indians on Indian Politics, ed. Chunilal Lalubhai Parekh (Bombay: Education Society's Steam Press, 1892)

P. Anandacharlu

Rai Bahadur Panambakkam Anandacharlu was born in Chittoor in 1843, the eldest of six sons. Raised by his mother after his father’s death, the young Anandacharlu was also greatly influenced by his father’s close  friend, C.V. Ruuganadum Sastri, a Judge of the Madras Court of Small Causes and a famous linguist in Southern India.

His first employment was as a teacher in his alma mater, the Patcheappah’s Institution. At the same time, he studied for the Bachelor of Laws Degree, obtaining it in 1869. He subsequently  became a vakil of the High Court at Madras and went on to have a successful legal career. In addition to his legal practice, he was also a keen student of literature and politics.

Around 1874, he addressed the public at a meeting held in protest against a Muncipal Bill and further spoke before the local Legislative Council. This marked the beginning of his close involvement with most of the public movements of his time. As a Municipal Commissioner, he also wielded much influence in the Municipal Council.

Anandacharlu was closely connected with the Indian National Congress from its inception and served as the President of the Seventh Indian National Congress held at Nagpur in 1891. In addition, he had a part to play in establishing the political party Madras Mahajana Sabha, where he also served as Secretary.

In considering the question of nationhood, he felt that the most crucial work lay in elevating the level of awareness among the British public on Indian affairs, with the primary duty for this lying on the shoulders of the Indians themselves. He also urged the Indian National Congress to have a meeting in London, following advice given by the British Congress Committee and the Parliamentary Indian party. He believed that such a move would prove advantageous to their cause on two fronts, by both dispelling rumours that they were anti-English and possibly securing seats for elected members in their Legislative Councils, which would be of aid in working towards internal reform.

Source: Eminent Indians on Indian Politics, ed. Chunilal Lalubhai Parekh (Bombay: Education Society’s Steam Press, 1892), 399-416

Works

“Selections from the Speeches of Rai Bahadur P. Ananda Charlu”, Eminent Indians on Indian Politics: with Sketches of their Lives, Portraits and Speeches, ed. Chunilal Lalubhai Parekh (Bombay: Education Society’s Steam Press, 1892), 402-416

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