Mrs. Annie Besant
Annie Besant with Henry olcott (left) and Charles Leader Beaterright) in Adyar, Madras in December 1905
Annie Besant with Henry Olcott (left) and Charles Leadbeater (right) in Adyar, Madras in December 1905
Particular mention may be made of the services rendered by Mrs. Annie Besant to India's struggle for freedom. She was an "extraordinary English woman who having passed through different phases of her life and undergone persecutions of no ordinary character", had at last made India her home and special interest. She was a dynamic force in Indian politics and rendered valuable services to the cause of national regeneration in India both from political and cultural points of view. She worked with zeal and energy to make the idea of Home Rule popular in a large part of India. She was the first President of the Indian National Congress who showed by action that the Presidency "was not a passing show or a three-day festivity" but involved shouldering of responsibility throughout its succeeding years. She made a significant contribution to the growth of Indian nationalism by ardent advocacy of the ancient Indian culture.