Tilak joined the Indian National Congress in 1890. He opposed its moderate attitude, especially towards the fight for self government. He was one of the most eminent radicals at the time.
Despite being personally opposed to early marriage, Tilak opposed 1891 Age of Consent Act, seeing it as interference with Hinduism and a dangerous precedent. The act raised the age at which a girl could get married from 10 to 12. A plague epidemic spread from Mumbai to Pune in late 1896, and by January 1897, it reached epidemic proportions. In order to suppress the epidemic and prevent its spread, it was decided to take drastic action, accordingly a Special Plague Committee, with jurisdiction over Pune city, its suburbs and Pune cantonment was appointed under the Chairmanship of W. C. Rand, I. C. S, and Assistant Collector of Pune by way of a government order dated 8 March 1897. His methods included destroying houses, transporting healthy people to hospitals, burning all the belongings and sending military men with guns into the