Ganesh Vasudeo Joshi
(1828 – 1880) – (Maharashtra)
Ganesh Vasudeo Joshi (Aged 55) popularly known as Sarwajanik Kaka, was born on 9 April 1828. He was a lawyer, social reformer, and political activist who played a key role in the Indian independence movement. Joshi was a founding member of the Poona Sarvajanik Sabha, which supported the noble works initiated by Honorable Justice Mahadev Govind Ranade.
During the Maharashtrian revival, Joshi was a social activist in Pune, and he served as an elderly guiding philosopher for the younger generation of leaders, such as Tilak and Agarkar, who gave impetus to the Indian independence struggle. Joshi also represented Vasudev Balwant Phadke as his lawyer during Phadke’s trial. Additionally, Joshi’s daughter was married to Gopal Krishna Gokhale.
At the Delhi Durbar of 1877, Joshi wore “homespun spotless white khadi” and rose to ask the viceroy of India (then the 1st Earl of Lytton) that Her Majesty the Queen grant India the same political and social status enjoyed by her British subjects. This demand marked the formal launch of the campaign for a free India and the beginning of a great transformation for the country. Joshi passed away by 25 July 1880 due to heart trouble.