The south London home of Dadabhai Naoroji lived for around 8 years at the end of the 19th century was honoured with a commemorative Blue Plaque Scheme in London, United Kingdom (UK).
The Blue Plaque scheme, run by the English Heritage charity, honours the historic significance of particular buildings across London.

Key points:

  • He was reported to have moved to Washington House, 72 Anerley Park, Penge, Bromley in 1897.
  • That red-brick home now has a plaque which reads: “Dadabhai Naoroji 1825-1917 Indian Nationalist and MP lived here”.
  • His key text on Drain of Wealth theory – ‘Poverty and Un-British Rule in India’ (1901) -was published while he was living over there.
  • According to records, Washington House functioned as an important centre for the Indian community in London a place where many Indians were invited and where Indians travelled to if they were in distress or in trouble.
  • Fellow Indian nationalists Romesh Chunder Dutt and Sister Nivedita are known to have been guests at the house.

About Dadabhai Naoroji

  • He was born on 4 September 1825 in Navsari, Maharashtra. He was an Indian political leader, merchant, scholar, writer and intellectual force in both India and Britain.
  • He is a prominent member of the Indian freedom struggle and Britain’s first Indian parliamentarian.He is also referred to as the “Grand Old Man of India” and “Unofficial Ambassador of India”.
  • He went on to be elected on a Liberal ticket for the north London constituency of Finsbury Central at the general election of 1892 – making history as the first Indian to sit in the U.K. Parliament.
  • He was also a member of the Welby Commission, set up by the British government to investigate wasteful spending in India.
  • He proposed the famous Drain of Wealth theory which formed the basis of the classic Indian nationalist interpretation of British colonialism.

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