Remembered for her heroics against the British, the Indian Joan of Arc Rani Lakshmibai remains an icon of the 1857 Indian Rebellion. The wife of Maharaja Gangadhar Rao, she is known for leading the fight against the British after her husband’s death. She also inspired the legendary lines Khoob Ladi Mardani.
Jaishankar Prasad was an Indian poet and an important figure in modern Hindi theatre and Hindi literature. Along with Mahadevi Verma, Sumitranandan Pant, and Suryakant Tripathi, Prasad is counted among the Four Pillars of Romanticism in Hindi literature.
Born to an English judge in British India, James Brooke was educated in England and then served the Bengal Army. He later established the Brooke Raj, or the State of Sarawak, in Borneo and reigned as its first White Rajah. He was knighted and later handed over his Raj to his nephew.
Kabir was an Indian saint and mystic poet whose works influenced Hinduism's Bhakti movement, which in turn played a key role in the formation of Sikhism, the fifth-largest organized religion in the world. Kabir is an important figure in both Hinduism and Islam and his legacy continues to live through a religious community known as the Kabir panth.
Birju Maharaj was an Indian dancer and singer. An exponent of the popular classical dance form Kathak, he was one of the most celebrated Kathak dancers ever. He won many prestigious awards like the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award, Lata Mangeshkar Puraskar, and India's second-highest civilian award, the Padma Vibhushan.
Bharatendu Harishchandra was a 19th-century Hindi writer and poet who is regarded as the father of Hindi literature as well as Hindi theater. He authored numerous dramas, travel accounts, and life sketches. He mainly wrote about the issues faced by Indians, such as poverty, exploitation, and class struggles. A nationalist, he urged Indians to prioritize Indian-made products.
Ravidas was an Indian mystic, social reformer, poet-saint, and spiritual figure. An influential personality, Ravidas taught his followers to disregard social divisions of gender and caste that were prevalent in India at that time. The Ravidassia sect, a religious sect of Vaishnavism, is based on Ravidas' teachings. Ravidas is revered even today as a saint by his followers.
Krishna Prasad Bhattarai was a Nepalese political leader who was twice the prime minister of Nepal. He played a major role in transitioning Nepal from an absolute monarchy to a democratic multi-party system. Prior to becoming the prime minister, he was the officiating president of the Nepali Congress for nearly 26 years. He was known to be saintly and religious.
B. P. Koirala was a Nepalese political leader, revolutionary, and writer. He is best remembered for his service as the Prime Minister of Nepal from 1959 to 1960. He also served as the Home Minister of Nepal in 1951. B. P. Koirala, who was an ardent advocate of democracy, is often counted among the greatest political figures of Nepal.
Padma Shri- and Arjuna Award-winning hockey legend Mohammed Shahid is best known for being part of the squad that won a gold at the 1980 Moscow Olympics. Known for his extraordinary dribbling skills, the Varanasi-born sports star had also won two Asian Games medals, including a silver.
P. K. Sethi was an Indian orthopedic surgeon best remembered for co-inventing a flexible and inexpensive artificial limb called the Jaipur foot in 1969 alongside Ram Chandra Sharma. The artificial limb, which was popularized by Indian dancer Sudha Chandran, became immensely popular in India. The Guinness Book of World Records recognized Sethi for his work that has helped several people.