It was the Congress Party’s annual session at Surat, the year was 1907. The Congress was going through a churning period as there were two groups one was the Moderate or Soft Faction and the other was Extremist or Hot Faction. Since, the session had also to elect the president of the party; trouble broke out between the two groups. Whereas the extremists were extremely popular as they were led by Lal-Bal-Pal e.g. Lala Lajpat Rai, Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Bipinchandra Pal, the other faction felt intimidated and resorted to violence. Since Balakrishna Munje was also in the session, it was he who took the duty of providing physical protection to Tilak.

The other group of Congress had started throwing chairs and stones on Tilak; Munje not just protected him against the attack but also took him to the safe place and this was the beginning of the great bonding between the two leaders. It is also a fact that Munje was in Congress only till Tilak lived as in 1920, he left the party. He had several issues with Gandhi and Congress Party, mainly on the issues like Non-violence methods for freedom struggle and extreme Muslim appeasement.

Educated in Medicines, a born political activist

Born on 12th December, 1872 at Bilaspur in Central Provinces during British rule, Munje comes from a Deshastha Rigvedi Brahmin family. Reading through the left-liberal and Jihadi propaganda anyone would think that Hindtuva icons were uneducated or less educated but contrary to their portrayal most of the top leaders of Hindutva movement whether it is RSS or Hindu Mahasabha were highly educated and most of them were educated in medicines. Not to forget Dr. Munje completed his Medical Degree from Grant Medical College in Mumbai in 1898 and later on started working for Bombay Municipal Corporation as a Medical Officer. However, as the destiny had it, he had to leave the job as he wanted to work for Hindu Cause.

Founding the Bhonsala Military School, Nasik

Dr. Moonje established the Central Hindu Military Education Society at Nasik in 1935 and started the school on June 12, 1937. He was a firm believer that Hindus need to develop muscle power to defend against militant religions like Islam, he had already seen several instances where in riots, majority of times Hindus were the victims. At the same time the trained youth would be an asset in the fight against the British colonialism. The militarization of the Hindu youth was felt the need of the time and Munje made special efforts to found the first military school at Nasik in 1937. The school was also envisioned as a feeder school for future recruitment to the armed forces and true to the vision these days it has established itself as a school catering for educational needs of students from all over India while also serving as a focal point for military education.

Due to his keen interest in military and militarization of India, he was also made a member of the “First Defense Committee of India” under the Chairmanship of General Chetwood and also member of Central Legislative Council now known as the Parliament. When Congress Party was in hot and cold relationship with the British Empire as it was supporting them in the War against Germans and at the same time trying to show the Indians that they were fighting against British, Munje was clear in his head. He wanted to use the opportunities that the Second World War had brought for the Indians. He not just took the advantage of new recruitment opened by British Government during the war but also made sure that the recruited remained loyal to India’s cause as it happened in the later part of the war, Indian Navy revolted against British.

Worked for Hindu Causes, till death

Remember, Dr. Munje had left Congress Party for he had realized it was not ignoring the interests of Hindus, he was relieved as his fears came true in 1947 when partition of United India took place, more than a million Hindus and Sikhs were killed in the riots. Nonetheless, he later on joined Hindu Mahasabha and become All India President of the organization and twice participated in Round table Conference at London and took the rights of Hindus efficiently. Dr. Munje was concerned about the conversion Mafiosi in India, but he was more concerned about the fact that there was no method to bring back those who wanted to reembrace Hinduism and for that he ‘Deval Smriti’ to know the provisions in Hindu Shastras for Ghar Wapasi.

DISCLAIMER: The author is solely responsible for the views expressed in this article. The author carries the responsibility for citing and/or licensing of images utilized within the text.