A Nation in Making

by Sir Surendranath Banerjea

  1. ISBN: 978-81-291-4010-4
  2. Pages: 448 pages
  3. Date: April 2016


Written in the last years of Sir Surendranath Banerjea’s life, A Nation in Making is not only the autobiography of a pioneering leader in Indian politics but also a commentary on public life.

In the pages of this book, we are offered insights into the life of the founder of the Indian National Association and twice president of the Indian National Congress. We grasp the vision motivating his landmark appeals—including one to the British to modify the 1905 Partition of Bengal, reinstitute habeas corpus and grant India a Constitution based on the Canadian model. Most of all, we understand the mind of a phenomenal leader—a trailblazer with the refrain, ‘agitate, agitate’; a moderate with a quarrel with B.G. Tilak and Mahatma Gandhi; and an ardent exponent of nationalism and a representative form of government.

Insightful, honest and sincere, this book immortalizes the work of those who, like Banerjea, ‘placed India firmly on the road to constitutional freedom…by constitutional means’.


Sir Surendranath Banerjea (1848–1925) was one of the founders of modern India and a proponent of autonomy within the British Commonwealth.

He served as an Indian Civil Service officer till 1874, before becoming a teacher.
He founded Ripon College, later renamed after him, in Calcutta and worked on the idea of nationalism. He purchased The Bengalee, a newspaper he edited for 40 years to propagate his nationalist viewpoint. He was twice appointed the president of Indian National Congress, appealed to the British to modify the 1905 Partition of Bengal, and in 1921 he was knighted and accepted office as minister of Local Self-government in Bengal.

He retired to write his autobiography, A Nation in Making in 1925.