A great scholar and reformer, Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar dedicated his entire life to the cause of social reforms. The first Hindu Widow Remarriage Act was introduced in 1856 owing to his relentless efforts. He also protested against child-marriage and campaigned against polygamy.

Though he did not concern himself much with religious questions, he was against all those who opposed reforms in the name of religion.

Though he was a Sanskrit scholar, his mind was open to the best in Western thought. His major contribution was in the field of education. He encouraged the study of Sanskrit and Bengali literature. He also introduced the study of Western thought in the Sanskrit college to inspire the Indians to shake off their age-old beliefs and modernize their ideas.

He believed that condition of women could be improved only through their education. He helped in opening approximately 35 girls school in Bengal. He was a champion of women’s education. The admission of non-Brahmin students in the Sanskrit College was made possible through his efforts.