This Day in History on 20 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 20 August. The students can refer them while preparing for all competitive exams and banking exams.

Important Days

World Mosquito Day

Indian Akshay Urja day

Important Events

1597: The first ship of the Dutch East India Company returned from Far East.

1828: Raja Rammohan Roy, Rabindranath Tagore, and Kalinath Roy established Bromho Samaj, In Calcutta. Brahmo Samaj, the first movement to initiate religio-social reforms, was founded by Ram Mohun Roy (1772-1833) in Calcutta. Influenced by Islam and Christianity, Roy denounced polytheism, idol worship, repudiated the Vedas, avataras, karma and reincarnation, caste and more. The first session of Adi Brahmo Samaj was held in the rented house by Kamal Bose of Chitpore Road in Jorasanko area in Calcutta.

1858: Charles Darwin first published his theory of evolution through natural selection.

1885: First meeting of the Indian National Congress was held.

1897: Sir Ronald Ross invented the early stages of malaria parasite inside a mosquito stomach.

1905: Lord George Curzon reigned as the Viceroy of India. He was then replaced by Lord Minto II, the Earl of Minto.

1913: Adolphe Pegond bales out of an airplane at 700 ft (213 m) and parachute safely to the ground, became the first person to parachute from a plane.

1917: Declaration of historic ‘Mongegue’.

1921: The Mopla revolt, one of the important uprisings of India, was started at Kerala.

1933: Mahatma Gandhi is rushed to the hospital on the fourth day of his latest fast.

1940: Radar was used for the first time by the British during World War II.

1955: Jawaharlal Nehru breaks off relations with the Portuguese after the invasion of Goa by Indian nationalists.

1969: Varahagiri Venkata Giri was elected President and G. S. Pathak as Vice President of India.

1974: Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed elected President of India with B. D. Jatti as Vice President.

1979: Indian premier Charan Singh resigns.

1985: Sant Harchand Singh Longowal, a ragi, reluctant politician and Sikh leader, died. He was shot by Sikh extremists at Sherpur.

1991: India’s Ambassador to Romania J.F.Ribeiro shot by Sikh extremists in Bucharest.

1991: Sivarasan and Subha, the main suspects in Rajiv Gandhi case, commit suicide in Bangalore.

1995: The Firozabad rail disaster, caused 358 lives, in Firozabad, India.

1995: Indira Mahila Vikas Yojana launched.

1996: India defeat Pakistan in Under-15 World Challenge Final at Lord’s, England.

1997: Lata Mangeshkar receives the Fifth Rajiv Gandhi National Sadbhavana Award from the President.

1997: Arun Gawli, Mumbai underworld don, arrested for his alleged involvement in the killing of a builder.

1997: Premananda, self-styled godman, sentenced by Pudukottai district and sessions court to life imprisonment for two terms and a fine of Rs. 66.4 lakhs for rape of 13 inmates of his ashram and murder of a male inmate.

1998: The Punjab and Haryana High Court upholds the conviction of former Punjab DGP K.P.S. Gill for outraging the modesty of an IAS officer Mrs. Rupan Deol Bajaj.

2008: Wrestler Sushil Kumar from India won the Bronze medal in Beijing Olympics.

2012: A prison riot in the Venezuelan capital, Caracas, kills at least 20 people

2014: Seventy-two people are killed in Japan’s Hiroshima Prefecture by a series of landslides caused by a month’s worth of rain that fell in one day.

Gostha Pal, Indian footballer
Gostha Pal, Indian footballer

2016: Fifty-four people are killed when a suicide bomber detonates himself at a Kurdish wedding party in Gaziantep, Turkey.

Birth/Birth Anniversary

1779: Jons Jacons Berzelius, Swedish chemist and academic, was one of the founders of Modern Chemistry.

1883: Benjamin Harrison, 23rd President of United States.

Rex Sellers, Indian-Australian cricketer
Rex Sellers, Indian-Australian cricketer

1890 H.P. Lovecraft, American science fiction author of macabre tales such as The Case of Charles Dexter Ward and At the Mountains of Madness.

1896: Gostha Pal, Indian footballer (d. 1976)

1909: Urmila Devi Shastri, freedom fighter, was born at Srinagar.

1915: Devraj Ars, former chief minister of Karnataka, was born

1917: Raja Kulkarni, freedom fighter and politician, was born at Mhaswa village in Maharashra.

Rajiv Gandhi
Rajiv Gandhi

1940: Rex Sellers, Indian-Australian cricketer

1944: Rajiv Gandhi, the sixth and youngest prime minister of India took office at the age of 40.

N. R. Narayana Murthy
N. R. Narayana Murthy

1946 N R Narayan Murty, Indian IT industrialist and co-founder of Infosys.

1976 Randeep Hooda, Indian Actor.

1987 Zakir Khan, Indian Stand-up Comedian.

Death/ Death Anniversary

Ram Sharan Sharma
Ram Sharan Sharma

1912: William Booth, the British founded Salvation Army.

1939: Agnes Giberne, Indian English astronomer and author.

B. K. S. Iyengar, Indian yoga instructor and author
B. K. S. Iyengar, Indian yoga instructor and author

1940: Leon Trotsky, leader of the Russian revolution in 1917.

2011: Ram Sharan Sharma, Indian historian and author.

Narendra Dabholkar
Narendra Dabholkar

2013: Narendra Dabholkar, Indian author and activist.

2014: B. K. S. Iyengar, Indian yoga instructor and author, founded Iyengar Yoga (b. 1918)

Further Reading

Month-wise This Day in History