This Day in History on 17 August

The historical events hold a lot of value for aspirants who are sitting for UPSC competitive exams including the IAS Exam.

On this page, we will list all historical events that occurred on 17 August. The students can refer them while preparing for all competitive exams and banking exams.

Important Days

Important Events

1780: Indian Governor General Warren Hastings duel with Francis to settle personal and official quarrels. Francis was wounded but survived.

1862: American Indian Wars: The Dakota War of 1862 begins in Minnesota as Dakota warriors attack white settlements along the Minnesota River.

1936: British parliament accepts registration of birth, marriage and death.

1944: Indian Viceroy Viscount Wavell rejects Gandhi’s request to discuss war support in return for Indian independence.

1945: Indonesia gained independence from Netherland.

1947: Radcliffe line, border between India and Pakistan was revealed.

1947: The first British troop leaves for England after Indian independence.

1953: First meeting of Narcotic Anonymous took place in south California.

1970: The first microwave link, which was set up without foreign assistance, was commissioned between Asansol, Dhanbad and Ranchi.

1985: Rajiv Gandhi announces Punjab state elections in India.

1986: In the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ case, the Supreme Court rules that “singing National Anthem is not obligatory”.

1988: President of Pakistan Mohammad Zia ul Haq and U S ambassador Arnold Rafel were killed in a plane crash.

1992: 20 members of the Janata Dal led by Ajit Singh break away from the parent body seeking separate seats in the Lok Sabha.

1997: Leander-Mahesh duo wins International ATP doubles in Connecticut.

1997: I K Gujral, Prime Minister, said that Queen Elizabeth should not go to Amritsar, the scene of the Jallianwalla Bagh massacre, during her visit to India in October.

1998: The Government issues a notification banning the use of quinacrine, a controversial female contraceptive and sterilization agent.

1998: National Human Rights Commission recommends compulsory registration of marriages in a bid to check child marriages.

1999: A massive earthquake hit northwestern Turkey, killing more than 14000 people and leaving hundreds of thousands without homes and essential services.

2005: American swimmer Michael Phelps became the first person to win eight gold medals at one Olympic game.

Birth/Birth Anniversary

1761: William Carey, the first English missionary to India, was born. He taught at the newly founded Fort William College at Calcutta from 1801 till his death and helped found the Serampore Press, which made the Bible accessible to over 300 million people.

Mahbub Ali Khan, Asaf Jah VI. Indian sixth Nizam of Hyderabad
Mahbub Ali Khan, Asaf Jah VI. Indian sixth Nizam of Hyderabad

1778: Muhammad Shah, Mughal Emperor of India.

1848: Romesh Chunder Dutt, great political leader, writer and social worker, was born.

1866: Mahbub Ali Khan, Asaf Jah VI. Indian sixth Nizam of Hyderabad.

1882: Sir Ram Nath Chopra, noted professor of Pharmacology, was born.

1911: Y.R. Lokurkar, senior journalist, was born.

1916: Amritlal Naagar was born.

1926: Jiang Zemin, Chinese engineer and politician, former general secretary of the communist party of china, 5th president of china.

1932: V S Naipaul, Trinidadian writer and novelist.

1934: Murasoli Shanmuga Sundram Maran was born in Thirukkuvalai village in Thiruvarur (Tamil Nadu).

1941: Y Venugopal Reddy, Former Governor of Reserve bank of India.

1943: Robert de Niro, American Actor. Star of many films including The Godfather, The Deer hunter, Ragging Bull, and Cape Fear.

1944: Larry Ellison, American businessman, co-founder of Oracle Corporation.

1963: S. Shankar. One of the highest-paid film directors of Indian Cinema.

Death/ Death Anniversary

Madan Lal Dhingra, Indian Revolutionary
Madan Lal Dhingra, Indian Revolutionary

1304: Emperor Go-Fukasuka of Japan.

1850: Jose de San Martin, An Argentine military commander who ruled all over southern America. Considered a national hero in Peru and Argentina.

1909: Madan Lal Dhingra, Indian Revolutionary. He was hanged at Paintanville Jail for assassinating Wyle and Lal Kaka.

1935: Charlotte Perkins Gilman. Utopian feminist and civil rights leader.

1958: Sir John Hubert Marshal, excavator of Mohan-Jo-Daro and Takshashila, died.

1988: Mohammad Zia ul Haq, former president of Pakistan.

2006: Shamsur Rehman, Bengali Poet.

2020: Pandit Jasraj, an Indian classical vocalist, belonging to the Mewati gharana. 

Further Reading

Month-wise This Day in History