H. B. Ari Gowder

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Rao Bahadur
Hubbatale Bellie Ari Gowder
Member of Legislative Assembly of Madras state
Member of Madras Legislative Council
In office
1930–1934
Member of Madras Legislative Council
In office
1923–1926
Personal details
Born December 4, 1893
Hubbatale, Madras Presidency
Died June 28, 1971(1971-06-28) (aged 78)
Nationality Indian
Spouse(s) Gauri (Jakkadha)
Alma mater Madras Christian College
Occupation legislator

Rao Bahadur Hubbatale Bellie Ari Gowder (December 4, 1893 – June 28, 1971) was a Badaga leader and the first member of the Badaga community to be elected to the Madras Legislative Council.

Birth and early life[edit]

Ari Gowder was born to Rao Bahadur H. J. Bellie Gowder at Hubbatale on December 4, 1893.[1] Bellie Gowder was an engineering contractor from the Badaga tribe of Nilgiris who constructed the Nilgiri Mountain Railway.

Politics and public life[edit]

Ari Gowder was educated at the Madras Christian College before entering politics. He became the first Badaga to be elected to the Madras Legislative Council.[2] He served as a member of the Madras Legislative Council from 1923[3] to 1926 and from 1930 to 1934 and was a member of the Legislative Assembly of Madras state in the 1940s and 1950s. He was also a President of the Backward Classes League. He also served a President of the Nilgiris District Board.[1] When prohibition was introduced in 1937, Ari Gowder was instrumental in enforcing prohibition in the Nilgiris district. He led the Indian contingent to the World Scouts Jumboree in Hungary in 1930.

Philanthropic activities[edit]

Ari Gowder established the Nilgiris Co-operative Marketing Society in Mettupalayam in 1941 and served as its President until his death in 1971. The main purpose of the Nilgiris Co-operative Marketing Society was to guarantee the rights of cultivators from being exploited by middlemen. Recognising his contribution to the Society, as bust of Ari Gowder was unveiled in the hall of NCMS on 25 May 1987.[4]

Death and legacy[edit]

Ari Gowder died on June 28, 1971.[5] He is highly regarded by members of the Badaga community who regard him as their patriarch. A bridge constructed in 1939 at Masinagudi linking the then Madras Presidency with the kingdom of Mysore was named Ari Gowder Bridge.

The portion of West Mambalam, Chennai which adjoins the Mambalam railway station was gifted to the Government of Tamil Nadu by Ari Gowder and the road which runs parallel to the railway line is named Arya Gowder Road in his honor.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Who's who in India, Burma & Ceylon. Who's Who Publishers. 1940. p. 681. 
  2. ^ Hockings, Paul (1980). Ancient Hindu Refugees: Badaga Social History 1550-1975. Mouton. p. 178. ISBN 9027977984, ISBN 978-90-279-7798-4. 
  3. ^ F. Irschick, Eugene (1986). Tamil Revivalism in the 1930s. p. 233. 
  4. ^ "Badaga leader’s birth anniversary celebrated". The Hindu. 5 December 2012. Retrieved 5 February 2013. 
  5. ^ Quinquennial Review / Tamil Nadu Legislative Council. Legislative Council Dept. 1976. p. 115. 

References[edit]