London: Ca. 1886 - 1895. Dadabhai Naoroji (1825 - 1917) was one of India's most important leaders of the independence movement; he was a member of the House of Commons (1892-1895), and the first Asian to be elected to Parliament. Naoroji moved to England in 1886, planning to become a Liberal candidate for Parliament, and received election help from William Digby, an Englishman and committed campaigner for Indian self rule. Amongst other strategies, Digby urged Naoroji to change his Parsi headdress in favor of an English top hat. Naoroji won by a narrow margin, and represented Finsbury Central.
In Parliament Naoroji questioned Britain's role in India, arguing that money earned in India should stay in India. He worked to bring attention to the siphoning off of India's resources by Britain during colonial rule, known as the "drain theory". He was also one of the founders of the Indian National Congress and remained active in Indian politics until 1906.
Signed calling card, with printed name and London address at front: Washington House, 72, Anerley Park, SE; signature at verso. Faint impression of pencil marks from previous owner, 3 x 1 3/4" Very good condition. Item #20854