This undated newspaper cutting shows the Indian MP Shapurji Saklatvala with his wife, Sarah Marsh, who hailed from a working class background. Together they had five children – two sons and three daughters. This posed photograph shows Sarah wearing a Sari and her husband in a suit. They met in Matlock, Derbyshire, where Saklatvala was recovering from illness.
Saklatvala was related to the industrialist Tata family. He first became a welfare worker in Bombay’s (now Mumbai) slums during an outbreak of plague. He joined Tata Industries in 1901 but moved to Britain in 1905 to help manage Tata’s Manchester office. He started campaigning for the improvement of workers’ rights during his time in the north of England. He later joined the Independent Labour Party, before switching to the Communist Party of Great Britain.
A tireless campaigner for social justice and better working conditions, he was first elected to parliament in 1922 for the working-class constituency of Battersea North.
- Article by:
- Susheila Nasta, Dr Florian Stadtler, Rozina Visram
From the suffragette Sophia Duleep Singh to the Communist MP Shapurji Saklatvala: explore the lives of notable South Asians in 19th and 20th century British and Indian politics.