Mahatma Gandhi
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"Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi" was the preeminent leader of Indian independence movement in British Raj/British-ruled India. Employing nonviolence/nonviolent civil disobedience, Gandhi led India to independence and inspired movements for civil rights and freedom across the world. The honorific "Mahatma" (Sanskrit: "high-souled", "venerable")—applied to him first in 1914 in South Africa,—is now used worldwide. He is also called "Bapu" (Gujarati language/Gujarati: endearment for "father", "papa") in India.

Born and raised in a Hindu Bania (caste)/merchant caste family in coastal Gujarat, western India, and trained in law at the Inner Temple, London, Gandhi first employed nonviolent civil disobedience as an expatriate lawyer in South Africa, in the resident Indian community's struggle for civil rights. After his return to India in 1915, he set about organising peasants, farmers, and urban labourers to protest against excessive land-tax and discrimination. Assuming leadership of the Indian National Congress in 1921, Gandhi led nationwide campaigns for easing poverty, expanding women's rights, building religious and ethnic amity, ending dalit/untouchability, but above all for achieving Swaraj or self-rule.

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