Our Leaders and Quotes

A.P.J. ABDUL KALAM

: A.P.J. ABDUL KALAM

- 15 October 1931 ALIVE

Achievements - This eminent scientist and engineer has also served as the 11th President of India from the period 2002 to 2007. APJ Abdul Kalam is a man of vision, who is always full of ideas aimed at the development of the country. He firmly believes that India needs to play a more assertive role in international relations.

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HISTORY :

Apart from being a notable scientist and engineer, Dr APJ Abdul Kalam served as the 11th President of India from the period 2002 to 2007. He is a man of vision, who is always full of ideas aimed at the development of the country and is also often also referred to as the Missile Man of India. People loved and respected Dr APJ Abdul Kalam so much during his tenure as President that was popularly called the People's President. Read more about the biography of Dr APJ Abdul Kalam here.

APJ Abdul Kalam was born on 15 October 1931 at the South Indian state of Tamil Nadu and received honorary doctorates from about 30 universities globally. In the year 1981, the Government of India presented him the nation's highest civilian honor, the Padma Bhushan and then again, the Padma Vibhushan in 1990 and the Bharat Ratna in 1997. Before Kalam, there have been only two presidents - Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan and Zakir Hussain - to have received the Bharat Ratna before bring appointed to the highest office in India.

Read on about the life history of Dr APJ Abdul Kalam, who's also the first scientist and bachelor to occupy the seat of the Rashtrapati Bhavan. His perspectives on important topics have been enunciated by him in the book 'India 2020'. It highlights the action plans that will help develop the country into a knowledge superpower by the time 2020. One thing for which he received ample kudos is his unambiguous statement that India needs to play a more assertive role in international relations.

And Dr APJ Abdul Kalam regards his work on India's nuclear weapons program as a way to assert India's place as a future superpower. Even during his tenure as President, APJ Kalam took avid interest in the spheres of India's science and technology. He has even put forward a project plan for establishing bio-implants. He is also an ardent advocate of open source software over proprietary solutions to churn out more profits in the field of information technology in India.

Dr. Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam born on 15th October 1931 at Rameswaram, in Tamil Nadu, , specialized in Aero Engineering from Madras Institute of Technology. Before his term as India's president, he worked as an aeronautical engineer with DRDO and ISRO. He is popularly known as the Missile Man of India for his work on development of ballistic missile and space rocket technology.[5]. In India he is highly respected as a scientist and as an engineer.

Kalam played a pivotal organisational, technical and political role in India's Pokhran-II nuclear test in 1998, the first since the original nuclear test by India in 1974.[6] He is a professor at Anna University (Chennai) and adjunct/visiting faculty at many other academic and research institutions across India.

With the death of R. Venkataraman on January 27, 2009, Kalam became the only surviving former President of India. Political views

APJ Abdul Kalam views on certain issues have been espoused by him in his book India 2020 where he strongly advocates an action plan to develop India into a knowledge superpower and into a developed nation by the year 2020. Kalam is credited with the view that India ought to take a more assertive stance in international relations; he regards his work on India's nuclear weapons program as a way to assert India's place as a future superpower.

Kalam continues to take an active interest in other developments in the field of science and technology as well. He has proposed a research programme for developing bio-implants. He is a supporter of Open source software over proprietary solutions and believes that the use of open source software on a large scale will bring more people the benefits of information technology..

Kalam's belief in the power of science to resolve society's problems and his views of these problems as a result of inefficient distribution of resources is modernistic. He also sees science and technology as ideology-free areas and emphasises the cultivation of scientific temper and entrepreneurial drive. In this, he finds a lot of support among India's new business leaders like the founders of Infosys and Wipro, (leading Indian IT corporations) who began their careers as technology professionals much in the same way Kalam did. Personal life

Kalam's father was a devout Muslim, who owned boats which he rented out to local fishermen and was a good friend of Hindu religious leaders and the school teachers at Rameshwaram. APJ Abdul Kalam mentions in his biography that to support his studies, he started his career as a newspaper vendor. This was also told in the book, A Boy and His Dream: Three Stories from the Childhood of Abdul Kalam by Vinita Krishna. The house Kalam was born in can still be found on the Mosque street in Rameshwaram, and his brother's curio shop abuts it. This has become a point-of-call for tourists who seek out the place. Kalam grew up in an intimate relationship with nature, and he says in Wings of Fire that he never could imagine that water could be so powerful a destroying force as that he witnessed when he was thirty three. That was in 1964 when a cyclonic storm swept away the Pamban bridge and a trainload of passengers with it and also Kalam's native village, Dhanushkodi.

He is a scholar of Thirukkural; in most of his speeches, he quotes at least one kural. Kalam has written several inspirational books, most notably his autobiography Wings of Fire, aimed at motivating Indian youth. Another of his books, Guiding Souls: Dialogues on the Purpose of Life reveals his spiritual side. He has written poems in Tamil as well. It has been reported that there is considerable demand in South Korea for translated versions of books authored by him.

Kalam has also patronised grassroots innovations. He is closely associated with the Honey Bee Network and The National innovation Foundation. The NIF is a body of Government of India and operates from Ahmadabad, Gujrat. He respects all religions, including Sikhism and Hinduism.

He is a vegetarian and a teetotaller. Kalam as an engineer

Abdul Kalam graduated from Madras Institute of Technology majoring in Aeronautical Engineering. As the Project Director, he was heavily involved in the development of India's first indigenous Satellite Launch Vehicle (SLV-III). As Chief Executive of Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP), he also played a major part in developing many missiles of India including Agni and Prithvi. Although the entire project has been criticised for being overrun and mismanaged[10]. He was the Chief Scientific Adviser to Defence Minister and Secretary, Department of Defence Research & Development from July 1992 to December 1999. Pokhran-II nuclear tests were conducted during this period, led by him.

He is one of those scientists who aims at putting technology created by him to multiple use. He used the light weight carbon-compound material designed for Agni to make callipers for the polio affected. This carbon composite material reduced the weight of the calipers to 400 grams (from its original weight of 4kgs.) Nizam's Institute of Medical Sciences (NIMS, Hyderabad) was the birthplace for the defence technology spin offs from Kalam's labs via the DRDL (Defence Research and Development Laboratory), DMRL (Defence Metallurgical Research Lab) and the RCI (Research Centre Imarat). Addressing a conference at Athens, Greece, Kalam told that "Seeing the children run with lighter callipers brought tears to the eyes of their parents. That was the real moment of bliss for me".

Honours

On Wednesday April 29, 2009, he became the first Asian to be bestowed the Hoover Medal, America's top engineering prize, for his outstanding contribution to public service. Kalam has received honorary doctorates from as many as thirty universities, including the Carnegie Mellon University and the Nanyang Technological University of Singapore.

The Government of India has honoured him with the nation's highest civilian honours: the Padma Bhushan in 1981; Padma Vibhushan in 1990; and the Bharat Ratna in 1997 for his work with ISRO and DRDO and his role as a scientific advisor to the Indian government..

Kalam is the Third President of India to have been honoured with a Bharat Ratna before being elected to the highest office, the other two being Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan and Zakir Hussain. He is also the first scientist and first bachelor to occupy Rashtrapati Bhavan.

Kalam has been chosen to receive prestigious 2008 Hoover Medal for his outstanding public service. The citation said that he is being recognised for making state-of-the-art healthcare available to the common man at affordable prices, bringing quality medical care to rural areas by establishing a link between doctors and technocrats, using spin-offs of defence technology to create state-of-the-art medical equipment and launching tele-medicine projects connecting remote rural-based hospitals to the super-specialty hospital. A pre eminent scientist, a gifted engineer, and a true visionary, he is also a humble humanitarian in every sense of the word, it added.

ANNA HAZARE

: Kisan Baburao Hazare

: 15.7.1937 AGE :76 ALIVE

: ANNA HAZARE

: Padma Shri (1990)

  Padma Bhushan (1992)

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Biography and Facts

Anna Hazare is widely hailed today as the man who has moved an entire nation to register strong protest against corruption. His struggle in the lokpal agitation has brought several powerful and influential people to task. Anna Hazare is playing a very important role in cleaning up the corruption in Indian polity.

This article gives the details of the life and struggle of this 73-year-old man who has caught the bull by the horn, literally! He has used peaceful tractics to shake all those who are ruling or planning to rule the nation. His thoughts are pure, so corruption does not stand a chance in front of him. The politicians and bureaucrats are afraid of this frail man who has opened a Pandora's box through his hunger strike.

Anna Hazare Biography

Kisan Bapat Baburao Hazare born on 15 January 1940, popularly recognized as Anna Hazare, is an Indian social activist who is particularly acknowledged for his contribution in order to the development of Ralegan Siddhi, a village in Ahmednagar district, Maharashtra, India and his efforts for establishing it as a model village, for which he was awarded the Padma Bhushan by Government of India, in 1992.

Anna Hazare is one of India's well-acclaimed social activists. He calls himself fakir, a man who has no family, no property, no bank balance, and wears only khadi. Anna Hazate starts an agitation; every leader from Mumbai to Delhi sits up and takes notice. His small frail body has taken several blows from the countless agitations, tours and hunger strikes he has undertaken since he came in public life in 1975. He fought to make Relegan Siddhi a model village; Right to Information (RTI) implemented; and now fighting for the implementation of the 'Jan Lokpal Bill'. Today, Anna Hazare is regarded as "The Gandhi of 21st century".

Anna has served as a soldier for 15 years in Indian Army. He enlisted after the 1962 Indo-China war when the government exhorted young men to join the Army. At times, Hazare used to be frustrated with life and wondered about the very existence of human life. His mind yearned to look out for a solution to this simple and basic question. His frustration reached the peak level and at one particular moment, he also contemplated suicide. He had also written a two page essay on why he wants to live no more. He was influenced in his search after accidently coming across a book by Swami Vivekananda at a New Delhi railway station. He was inspired by Vivekananda's photograph on the cover. As he started reading the book, he found answers to all his questions, he says. The book revealed to him that the ultimate motive of human life should be service to humanity. Striving for the betterment of common people is equivalent to offering a prayer to the God, he realized.

In 1978, he took voluntary retirement from the 9th Maratha Battalion (army service) and returned home to Ralegaon Siddhi, a village in Maharashtra's drought-prone Ahmadnagar. He was 39 years old at that time. A former soldier in the Indian army, Anna is well known and respected for upgrading the ecology and economy of the village of Ralegan Siddhi which is located in the drought prone Ahmednagar district of Maharashtra state. The erstwhile barren village has metamorphosed into a unique model of rural development due to its effective water conservation methods, which made the villagers self-sufficient. Earlier, the same village witnessed alcoholism, utter poverty and migration to urban slums. Inspired by Hazare's unique approach of salvaging a hopeless village, the state government has implemented the "Model Village" scheme as part of its official strategy. Hazare is now synonymous with rural development in India.

"The dream of India as a strong nation will not be realised without self-reliant, self-sufficient villages, this can be achieved only through social commitment & involvement of the common man. Building concrete jungles does not mean development as Gandhiji had rightly said. Surely, one needs to live for oneself and the family but simultaneously one owes something to your neighbour, your village and your nation too.", Anna Hazare.

Anti-corruption Movement

Indians have seen many revolutions some of which were respected the world over. This latest revolution would transform India; and the world shall bow before its amazing power and people, yet again. Corruption is the order of the day and Anna Hazare has picked up the broom to clean up this mess implementing JanLokpal Bill which is an anti-corruption bill. Anna Hazare is the face of India's fight against corruption. He has taken that fight to the corridors of power and challenged the government at the highest level. People, the common man and well-known personalities alike, are supporting him in the hundreds swelling to the thousands.

Anna Hazare, the 73-year-old activist is at the center of the standoff between India’s government and civil society over the terms of an anti-corruption law, draws inspiration from a leading light of India's spiritual renaissance in the late 19th century, Swami Vivekananda.

Anna Hazare Facts

Here is a list of facts about the life and activities of Anna Hazare.

1. His actual name is Kisan Bapat Baburao Hazare, popularly known as Anna Hazare.
2. His birth date is 15 January 1940.
3. He is unmarried.
4. He was born in Bhingar village in Ahmednagar district of Maharashtra state in western India to Baburao Hazare and Laxmi Bai, an unskilled labourer family.
5. He was raised by his childless aunt in Mumbai but could not continue beyond 7th standard and had to quit midway due to problems.
6. He has two sisters.
7. His organization - the Bhrashtachar Virodhi Jan Andolan (People's movement against Corruption).
8. His tool of protest - hunger strikes.
9. His prime target - politicians.
10. Anna Hazare started his career as a driver in the Indian Army in 1963 heeding patriotic calls by the government after Indian forces were defeated in a border war with China.
11. In the year 1965, Pakistan attacked India and at that time, Hazare was posted at the Khemkaran border. On November 12, 1965, Pakistan launched air attacks on Indian base and all of Hazare's comrades became martyrs.
12. During the mid-1970s he was involved in a road accident while driving.
13. In 1978, he took voluntary retirement from the 9th Maratha Battalion.
14. During his 15-year tenure as a soldier, he was posted to several states like Sikkim, Bhutan,Jammu-Kashmir, Assam, Mizoram, Leh and Ladakh and braved challenging weathers.
15. He gained wide acclaim in his home state and at the national level for transforming his once drought-prone, impoverished village to a prosperous model village by encouraging sustainable farming and rural life as envisioned by Mahatma Gandhi.
16. Government has awarded Mr. Hazare with the Padma Bhushan and Padma Shri awards, the nation's third and fourth highest civilian awards respectively, for his social work.
17. Mr. Hazare lives on his pension from army service in a room in the temple in his village and says his campaigns are financed by voluntary donations by his supporters.
18. He is always seen in white clothes with a traditional Indian cap (Gandhi Topi).
19. Anna Hazare never got any grant from Government of India.
20. Anna Hazare has given his life for the benefit of India.
21. He got the home in his village but he has not entered in that house from last 35 years.
22. In 1995-96, he forced the Sena-BJP government in Maharashtra to drop two corrupt Cabinet Ministers.
23. In 2003, he forced the Congress-Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) state government to set up an investigation against four ministers.
24. In April 2011, four days of fasting brought thousands of people out in support of his crusade against corruption. They also made the government realise it could not be dismissive about Anna Hazare and his mass appeal.
25. He fought from the front to have Right to Information (RTI) implemented.
26. Mr. Hazare is leading the anti-corruption movement that demands establishment of a stronger ombudsman than envisioned by the government.
27. He is fighting for the implementation of the Jan Lokpal Bill, the anti-corruption bill drafted by his team of crusaders.
28. He has termed the current civil society's movement against corruption as "India's second freedom struggle," and has asked all Indians to participate.

Various Awards Won By Anna Hazare

Anna Hazare has won the following awards:

1. Indira Priyadarshini Vrikshamitra award by the Government of India on November 19, 1986 from the hands of Prime Minister of India Rajiv Gandhi.
2. Krishi Bhushana award by the Government of Maharashtra in 1989.
3. Padmashri award, by the Government of India in 1990.
4. Padmabhushan award, by the Government of India in 1992.
5. On April 15 2008, Anna Hazare received the World Bank's 2008 Jit Gill Memorial Award for Outstanding Public Service.
6. Care International of the USA, Transparency International, Seoul (South Korea).
7. He received awards worth Rs 25 lakh and donated the entire amount for the Swami Vivekananda Kritadnyata Nidhi (social gratitude fund). Out of the two lakh rupees received from the above amount, mass marriages are carried of at least 25-30 poor couples every year.

BHAGAT SINGH

: BHAGAT SINGH.

: 28.9.1907

: 23.3.1931

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Contributions Bhagat Singh was among the prominent revolutionaries who shaped the base of a grand national movement. Following his execution, on March 23, 1931, the supporters and followers of Bhagat Singh regarded him as a "Shaheed", "martyr".

Life

Bhagat Singh was born on 27 September 1907 at Banga in Lyallpur district (now Pakistan) to Kishan Singh and Vidya Vati. From his early childhood, Bhagat Singh was imbued with the family's spirit of patriotism. At the time of his birth, his father Kishan Singh was in jail. His uncle, Sardar Ajit Singh, was a great freedom fighter and established the Indian Patriots' Association. He was well-supported by his friend Syed Haidar Raza, in organizing the peasants against the Chenab Canal Colony Bill. Ajit Singh had 22 cases against him and was forced to flee to Iran. Bhagat Singh was considered to be one of the most influential revolutionaries of Indian Nationalist Movement. He became involved with numerous revolutionary organizations.

Kishan Singh enrolled Bhagat Singh in Dayanand Anglo Vedic High School. At a very young age, Bhagat Singh started following Non-Cooperation Movement called by Mahatma Gandhi. Bhagat Singh had openly defied the British and had followed Gandhi's wishes by burning the government-sponsored books. Following the violent incidents of "Chauri Chaura", Gandhi called for the withdrawal of the Non-Cooperation movement. Unhappy with the decision, Bhagat Singh, isolated himself from Gandhi's nonviolent action and joined the Young Revolutionary Movement.

He was pursuing B.A. examination when his parents planned to have him married. He vehemently rejected the suggestion and said that, if his marriage was to take place in Slave-India, my bride shall be only death." Singh later joined the Hindustan Republican Association, a radical group, later known as the Hindustan Socialist Republican Association. He returned to his home in Lahore after assurances from his parents that he would not be compelled to get married. He established contact with the members of the Kirti Kisan Party and started contributing regularly to its magazine, the "Kirti". In March 1926, the Naujawan Bharat Sabha was formed with Bhagat Singh, as its secretary.

On 30 October 1928, an all-parties procession, led by Lala Lajpat Rai, marched towards the Lahore railway station to protest against the arrival of the Simon Commission. Stopping the procession, police made a lathi charge at the activists. The confrontation left Lala Lajpat Rai with severe injuries and also led to his death. As an avenge to the death of Lala Lajpat Rai, Bhagat Singh and his associates plotted the assassination of Scott, the Superintendent of Police, believed to have ordered the lathi charge. The revolutionaries, mistaking J.P. Saunders, an Assistant Superintendent of Police, as Scott, killed him instead. Bhagat Singh quickly left Lahore to escape his arrest. To avoid recognition, he shaved his beard and cut his hair, a violation of the sacred tenets of Sikhism.

In response to the formulation of Defence of India Act, the Hindustan Socialist Republican Association planned to explode a bomb inside the assembly premises, where the ordinance was going to be passed. On April 8 1929 Bhagat Singh and Batukeshwar Dutt threw a bomb onto the corridors of the assembly and shouted 'Inquilab Zindabad!' The bomb was not meant to kill or injure anyone and therefore it was thrown away from the crowded place. Following the blasts both Bhagat Singh and Batukeshwar Dutt courted arrest

Trial and Death

The British authority, while interrogating them, came to know about their involvement in the murder of J. P. Saunders. Bhagat Singh, Rajguru, and Sukhdev were charged with the murder. Singh admitted to the murder and made statements against the British rule during the trial.

While in jail, Bhagat Singh found that the authorities were following a dual policy in treating the prisoners. The criminals of foreign origin were treated better than Indian political prisoners. As a protest, he along with some fellow prisoners declared to "go on hunger strike". The strike continued for over a month and finally the British had to accept before their conditions.

Bhagat Singh along with other revolutionaries found responsible for the Assembly bombing and murder of Saunders. On March 23, 1931, Bhagat Singh was hanged in Lahore with his fellow comrades Rajguru and Sukhdev. Singh was cremated at Hussainiwala on banks of Sutlej river.

SHAHEED BHAGAT SINGH JANMA DIVAS

Bhagat Singh was born on September 28, 1907. His father was also a revolutionary, so patriotism flowed in his blood. By the time, he completed his secondary education, Bhagat Singh knew everything about the revolutionaries of his family. At the- age of thirteen, Bhagat Singh left school and joined the freedom movement.

At that time, there was a powerful anti-foreign cloth movement in the country. Bhagat Singh took part in this movement and wore only Khadi. He would collect foreign clothes and burn them. Bhagat Singh had no faith in non-violence and non-cooperation movement and believed that armed revolution was the only practical way of winning freedom. He went to Lahore and formed a group called 'Naujavan Bharat Sabha' which consisted of young Indians and was appointed its Secretary. Here he was introduced to Chandrasekhar Azad, another young revolutionary, with whom he formed a great bond. All these days he had been a hero of the Sikhs; he now became a national hero.

In February 1928, the Simon Commission, headed by Sir John Simon, came to India to decide how much freedom and responsibility could be given to the people of India. But there was no Indian on the committee, so people decided to boycott it. Wherever the committee went, people protested with black flags, shouting “Simon go back”. One such procession that was lathi charged was led by Lala Lajpat Rai. A British police officer hit Lalaji on the chest. Lalaji died after some days. To averige Lalaji's death, Bhagat Singh and two other revolutionaries Sukhdev and Rajguru shot dead Saunders, the police officer responsible. The three were arrested later for throwing a bomb in the Delhi Assembly Hall and sentenced to death. Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev and Rajguru were hanged a day before the appointed day on March 23rd, 1931. He has rightfully been given the title of Shaheed-e-Azam (King of Martyrs).

CHANDRASEKHAR AZAD

:- Chandrasekhar Azad

: July 23, 1906

: February 27, 1931

Chandrasehkar Azad g Sade Desh de Mahan Krantikariya vicho ek han , Oh Hamesha Apne desh de loka layi apni Kurbani den nu tiyar rehnde san , Desh prati Ohna di lagan bachpan toh hi c ,

Bachpan vich jdo oho 14 year de c , odo gandi da banars vich ek andolan c , othe angrej loka de dande mar rahe c , ta eh ohna toh dekhiya na geya te ohna ne ek angrej de chak k pathar mareya te us nu hospital vich pucha dita , te Azad g nu police station le k gye ta othe , ohna ne Azzad g Da name pucheya , te ohna daseya Azzad , Pita da name pucheya ta ohna keha , Sawtantrta , Ohna nu eho ja karn te 15 chabuk mre gye , jdo ohna de chabuk vaj rahe c oh ohni vri hi Bharat Mata Jai de Naare launde rahe ,

Oh Hamesha hi apne Inqlaabi sathia nu Apne desh di gulami da Ehsaas karunde rehnde san te ohna de dila vich apne Desh layi lagan mohabat paida krde san , jise de natije vajo sade mulakh nu bhut Mahan Inqlaabi mile han , Bhagat SIngh g v OHna vicho ek ne .

Ajj de Nojwana nu v Jarurt hai k Oh Chandrasekhar Azad g Warge Mahan Inqaalabi de dase hoye Raste te turan taa jo oh apne desh de loka nu Ohna de Assli hak dwa sakan . Sadi sareya nu benti hai k Tusi jina ho sake Ehna mahan karantikaria de Nal related Books read kreya karo jise nal thonu v ehna de jiwan te zindgi te Manzil bare pata lag sake .

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Gopal Krishna Gokhale

: Gopal Krishna Gokhale

: May 9, 1866

: February 19, 1915

ACHIEVEMENTS :Political guru of Mahatma Gandhi; one of the pioneers of the Indian national movement; founder of the Servants of India Society.

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Gopal Krishna Gokhale was one of the pioneers of the Indian national movement. He was a senior leader of the Indian National Congress. Gokhale gave voice to the aspirations of millions of Indians who were looking for freedom from the British rule. Gandhiji considered him as his political guru. Apart from being a political leader, Gopalkrishna Gokhale, was also a social reformer. He founded the "Servants of India Society"-an organization dedicated to the cause of common people. Gopal Krishna Gokhale's contribution to the making of Indian nation is invaluable.

Gopal Krishna Gokhale was born on May 9, 1866 in Kothapur, Maharashtra. His father Krishna Rao was a farmer who was forced to work as clerk, as the soil of the region was not conducive for agriculture. His mother Valubai was a simple woman. Gokhale received his early education at the Rajaram High School in Kothapur with the help of financial assistance from his elder brother. Later on he moved on to Bombay and graduated from Elphinstone College, Bombay in 1884 at the age of 18.

Gopal Krishna Gokhale was one of the first generations of Indians to receive college education. He was respected widely in the nascent Indian intellectual community and across India. Education influenced Gokhale greatly. His understanding of the English language allowed him to express himself without hesitation and with utmost clarity. His appreciation and knowledge of history instilled in him a respect for liberty, democracy, and the parliamentary system. After graduation, he moved on to teaching, and took a position as an Assistant Master in the New English School in Pune. In 1885, Gokhale moved on to Pune and became one of the founding members of Fergusson College, along with his colleagues in Deccan Education Society. Gopal Krishna Gokhale gave nearly two decades of his life to Fergusson College and rose to become principal of the college. During this time, Gokhale came in contact with Mahadev Govind Ranade. Ranade was a judge, scholar, and social reformer, whom Gokhale called his guru. Gokhale worked with Ranade in Poona Sarvajanik Sabha of which Gokhale became the Secretary.

Gopal Krishna Gokhale entered public life in 1886 at the age of 20. He delivered a public address on "India under the British Rule", which was highly appreciated. Gokhale regularly contributed articles to Bal Gangadhar Tilak's weekly "Mahratta". Through his articles he tried to awaken the latent patriotism of Indian people. Soon, Gokhale was promoted as Secretary of the Deccan Education Society. When the Indian National Congress held its session in Poona in 1895, he was the secretary of the Reception Committee. From this session, Gokhale became a prominent member of the Indian National Congress. Gokhale was twice elected as president of Pune Municipality. For a while Gokhale was also a member of the Bombay Legislative Council where he spoke strongly against the then Government.

In 1902, Gokhale left the Fergusson College. He became a Member of the Imperial Legislative Council in Delhi. There he spoke for the people of the country in an able manner. Gokhale had an excellent grasp of the economic problems of our country which he ably presented during the debates. In 1905, Gokhale started a new society called "Servants of India Society". This society trained workers for the service of the country. In the same year, Gokhale went to England to voice his concerns relating to the unfair treatment of the Indian people by the British government. In a span of 49 days, he spoke in front of 47 different audiences, captivating every one of them. Gokhale pleaded for gradual reforms to ultimately attain Swaraj, or self-government, in India. He was instrumental in the introduction of the Morley- Minto Reforms of 1909, which eventually became law. Though the reforms sowed the seeds of communal division in India, nevertheless, they gave Indian access to the seats of the highest authority within the government, and their voices were more audible in matters of public interest.

Gopal Krishna Gokhale was a diabetic and asthmatic. Excessive assertion took its toll on Gokhale's health and ultimately he died on February 19, 1915.

KANAKLATHA BARUAH

= Kanaklatha Baruah (1924-1942)

Indian National Congress in Mumbai on August 9,1942, resolved to ‘Do or die’ for Independence of the country and began agitation with ‘Quit India’ slogan against the British regime. Young and old, men and women, boys and girls, all fearlessly and wholeheartedly joined the movement. Among them was Kanaklatha Baruah.

She got an opportunity to fulfill her dream of serving the country. As soon as the ‘Quit India’ movement began the British rulers started arresting Congress leaders. Under the leadership of revolutionary Jyoti Prasad Agarwala, in the district of Darrang a resolution was adopted unanimously to hoist National flag at the court and police station, as they were the marks of British Empire. Being aware of women’s participation in the nation’s freedom struggle, Kanaklatha enrolled herself in the suicide squad. The day for peaceful and non-violent action was decided as September 20.

According to the programme, freedom fighters with National flag had to capture local police station. Four thousands people from Kalabari side and an equal number from Barangabari moved towards Gohpur police station. In the front line was Kanaklatha Baruah holding a National flag in her hands. She requested the officer in charge of the police station to allow her to hoist the flag at the western gate peacefully. The officer in charge ignored her request and threatened to shoot her, if she dared to proceed further. Firebrand Kanaklatha marched ahead and had to face the bullets of the strong police force. She laid down her life for the freedom of the country. Another instance of similar martyrdom was from the district of Nagaon. Berhampur in the district was also on fire of Quit India movement.

KHUDIRAM BOSE

: Khudiram Bose

: Tamluk, Midnapore, Bengal

:3.12.1889

: 11.8.1908

: Freedom fighter

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Khudiram Bose, a young political activist from Bengal, was not only one of the most prominent figures in India's fight for freedom from British rule, but also the youngest revolutionary that the Indian independence movement had witnessed. Khudiram Bose led a life of risk and adventure, never for once flinching from his goal of acquiring freedom for his country. Apart from possessing the spirit of a fighter, Khudiram Bose was also known for his leadership qualities and his services to the society. However, the revolutionary died an unfortunate early death, leaving India bereft of one of the greatest freedom strugglers that the country had ever seen. Khudiram Bose will always be remembered in the history of Indian independence as the proponent of the 'Agni Yuga' or the fiery age, an era which was characterized by young people getting involved in the fight against the British without thinking twice about their own lives. Khudiram Bose was the first martyr of the early twentieth century.

Childhood

Khudiram Bose was born on December 3, 1889 in the small village of Habibpur situated close to the town of Tamluk in Midnapore district of Bengal. Khudiram Bose was the fourth child in a family of three daughters. His parents, Trailokyanath Bose and Lakshmipriya Devi had two sons before the birth of Khudiram but both of them died prematurely. Following the tradition of the yesteryear superstitious society, his mother decided to give up possession of a male child to avoid further deaths in the family. According to reports, her baby boy was sold to her eldest daughter Aparupa in exchange of a measure of foodgrain, also known as 'khud' in Midnapore. After selling her son to her daughter, the mother abandoned all rights to take care of her son. He was thus named Khudiram as he was bought in exchange of 'khud' and henceforth was taken care of only by his sister. Thus, it was right after his birth that Khudiram Bose lost all contact with his mother and father.

Inspiration on the Path to Revolution

Khudiram Bose showed a revolutionary spirit even when he was a mere child. As a child Khudiram Bose loved adventure and was widely known for his courage and bravery on the face of danger. Quite naturally, he also made a very good leader in political groups. It was in the years 1902 - 1903 that Khudiram Bose was inspired to plunge into active freedom struggle. During this time Sri Aurobindo and Sister Nivedita were in Medinipur to deliver a lecture inspiring people to join the freedom struggle against the British. Khudiram Bose was a teenager at that point of time and was bubbling with energy. He was part of student revolutionary groups in Tamluk.

Inspired by the speeches of Sri Aurobindo, Khudiram Bose took part in the secret planning sessions that were held by Sri Aurobindo and Sister Nivedita. Shortly after, in the year 1904, Khudiram Bose shifted from Tamluk to the main town of Medinipur, not only to enroll at the Medinipur Collegiate School but also to take part in the martyr activities that were then a common occurrence in principal towns across India. Khudiram Bose became an active member of a martyrs' club in Medinipur and soon won the attention of even his seniors at the club through his adventurous and leadership qualities, his dedication and his services to the society.

Apart from Sri Aurobindo and Sister Nivedita, Khudiram Bose also derived inspiration from verses in the Bhagavad Gita and the words of his teacher Satyendranath Bose. In the year 1905, Khudiram Bose became involved with the political party Jugantar to show his disobedience to the British government following the Partition of Bengal the same year. A few months later Khudiram Bose planted bombs close to a police outpost in Medinipur. Though he was not arrested in 1905, police arrested him three years later and announced a death sentence for a similar incident involving killing by bombing.

The Muzaffarpur Incident

Khudiram Bose and Prafulla Chaki from Jugantar were sent to the town of Muzaffarpur in Bihar to carry out the killing of Kingsford, the magistrate of Calcutta Presidency. The two revolutionaries went to Muzaffarpur, adopted the code names of Haren Sarkar and Dinesh Roy respectively, and took shelter in the 'dharmashala' of Kishorimohan Bandopadhyay. Though they wanted Kingsford dead, Khudiram Bose and Prafulla Chaki did not want the bloodshed of innocent people accumulated around a court during the daytime. Therefore they decided to shoot him when he was on his way from the European Club to his home or vice versa. On April 30, 1908, Khudiram Bose and Prafulla Chaki took position outside the European Club and targeted the carriage of Kingsford as it moved out of the club at around 8:30 in the evening. The bombs and the pistol shots hit the carriage. Khudiram Bose and Prafulla Chaki immediately fled the place of crime thinking that their task were complete, only to be informed later that it was the wife and daughter of barrister Pringle Kennedy who were traveling inside Kingsford's carriage. Both Khudiram and Prafulla were filled with remorse for their act of killing two innocent women. The duo were then constantly on the move to escape the eyes of the police. However, the police caught them soon after the incident took place.

Death of Prafulla Chaki

After the failed attempt to kill magistrate Kingsford in Muzaffarpur, Prafulla Chaki and Khudiram Bose had taken two separate routes to flee the police. On May 1 when his companion Khudiram Bose was arrested, Prafulla Chaki was received in the house of a local in Muzaffarpur who did his best to save his life by providing food, rest and also a train ticket to destination Kolkata. Prafulla Chaki had to change trains on his way from Muzaffarpur to Howrah and it was in the train that misfortune met him in the form of Nandalal Bannerjee, the sub inspector in the British police. Immediately suspecting the young Prafulla Chaki, Nandalal Bannerjee was successful in tracing information which led him to believe that it was Prafulla Chaki who was involved in the Muzaffarpur incident. As soon as Prafulla Chaki left his first train to board the next which would drop him to Howrah, Nandalal Bannerjee was prepared with other police personnel to arrest him. While Prafulla Chaki tried to kill Nandalal Bannerjee by shooting at him, his attempt was unsuccessful, after which he fired the gunshot at himself. Prafulla Chaki took away his own life unable to bear the humiliation of submitting himself to the British authorities.

Incidents leading to Arrest of Khudiram Bose

The Muzaffarpur incident took place at 8:30 in the evening. People were made aware of the killing on the same night and security consisting of armed police constables was stationed at all crucial positions around the country, especially the railway stations. In addition, the British government had also announced Rs 1000 cash prize for the person who could trace the attackers or assist the police in doing so. Knowing that the police would be behind him, Khudiram Bose decided to walk his way to Medinipur rather than board a train. However, ill fate was waiting for him in Oyaini, where he stopped for a glass of water. Constables were immediately on his side when Khudiram Bose stopped by at a tea stall to ask for a glass of water and were curious to know the reason which made him walk such a long way as to make him so tired and dusty. A search which ensued revealed that Khudiram Bose was armed with two revolvers and 37 rounds of ammunition. It is to be remembered that Khudiram Bose was a mere 18 year old kid at the time of the incident and was no match to the strength of the much older constables.

On May 1, 1908, Khudiram Bose was taken under arrest for his involvement in the Muzaffarpur killings, but the arrest failed to undermine his nationalistic spirit, the young boy crying the slogan 'Vandemataram' even after the entire town of Muzaffarpur accumulated in front of the railway station to take a look at the boy who could commit such a heinous crime. After being taken to the magistrate's office in Muzaffarpur, Khudiram Bose took the blame for the incident which led to the killings and deaths in Muzaffarpur just a day ago wholly upon himself. No attempts would make him reveal the name of either his partner Prafulla Chaki or his revolutionary group in Medinipur. However, police produced before him the body of Prafulla Chaki who had taken away his life by then. The shock was elaborately written upon his face and Khudiram Bose came to know that there was no point in hiding the identity of his group from the police, who would soon trace the revolutionary group under Barindra Kumar Ghosh, which Khudiram Bose and Prafulla Chaki had been working for. The police authorities working under the instructions of the British proved how inhuman they could be when they chopped off the head of the dead Prafulla Chaki and sent it to Kolkata for further confirmation on his and Khudiram Bose's revolutionary links.

Court Trial and Martyrdom

Khudiram Bose was put behind bars on May 2, 1908 and the court trial began on the 21st of May. Binodbihari Majumdar and Mr. Mannuk were the prosecutors for the British government, while Upendranath Sen, Kalidas Basu and Kshetranath Bandopadhyay fought in Khudiram Bose's defense. Narendranath Lahiri, Satishchandra Chakraborty and Kulkamal Sen also joined the team of defense lawyers for Khudiram Bose as the trial progressed, the entire team fighting the case for free. On May 23, 1908, Khudiram Bose had to give his first statement in court. Following the advice of his lawyers, Khudiram Bose denied any involvement in the gunshots and bombings that led to the death of the two British women in Muzaffarpur. The trial progressed slowly with the judge announcing that the final verdict would be delivered on June 13.

It was on the date of the verdict that the prosecutors in the Khudiram Bose case received an anonymous letter warning that bombings would soon take place in Kolkata and this time it would be the Biharis rather than the Bengalis who would be behind the attack. The defense board was now sure that the letter would convince the judge that people other than Khudiram Bose can be involved in the killings in Muzaffarpur. The chief intention of the defense board in the case was to prevent the pronouncement of a death sentence for Khudiram Bose. However, the British Raj was not prepared to let go off an Indian who had already been declared as a revolutionary. The death sentence was awarded to Khudiram Bose. Khudiram Bose embraced the sentence with dignity. In fact he also refused to appeal to the High Court, a practice which existed during those times, saying that he was destined to be hanged to death.

It was his defense lawyers who convinced Khudiram Bose to make the appeal to the High Court arguing with him that a life sentence instead of a death sentence would mean that Khudiram Bose could live on to serve his motherland. The hearing at High Court took place on July 8, 1908. It was Narendrakumar Basu who fought on behalf of Khudiram Bose in the July High Court trial presenting several arguments which would avert the possibility of a death sentence for a revolutionary who had become an overnight hero for young nationalists in India after the Muzaffarpur incident. The judge at the High Court said that July 13 would be the date for the ultimate verdict on the matter.

The arguments put forward to the High Court by Narendrakumar Basu would have put the case in favor of Khudiram Bose and could have saved his life, but the British government had already decided that they would award the death sentence to Khudiram Bose. An attempt of appeal made to the Governor General was also turned down and the death sentence for Khudiram Bose was made public on August 11, 1908. The sentence led to a huge uproar among people, young and old, who accumulated in front of the courthouse to shout slogans of protest against the sentence. The local press was vociferous in making the sentiments of the Indians heard. But it was Khudiram Bose who surprised many by embracing his death gracefully by going to the gallows on August 11, 1908 with a smile on his face.

Timeline
1889: Khudiram Bose was born on December 3.
1904: He shifted from Tamluk to Medinipur and took up revolutionary activities seriously.
1905: He joined political party Jugantar.
1905: He planted bombs in a police station to kill government officials.
1908: He gets involved in the Muzaffarpur killings on April 30.
1908: He is arrested for the killings on May 1.
1908: His partner in the Muzaffarpur killings Prafulla Chaki kills himself.
1908: The Khudiram Bose trial begins on May 21.
1908: He gives his first statement in court on May 23.
1908: June 13 is announced as the date of verdict.
1908: The trial starts in High Court on July 8.
1908: Final verdict of death sentence announced on July 13.
1908: Appeal to Governor General thwarted and final verdict announced on August 11.
1908: Khudiram Bose is hanged to death on August 11th.

LAL BHADUR SHASTRI

:LAL BHADUR SHASTRI

: 2.10.1904

: 10.1.1966

ACHIEVEMENTS: Played a leading role in Indian freedom struggle; became Parliamentary Secretary of Pandit Govind Vallabh Pant, the then chief minister of Uttar Pradesh; became the Minister of Police and Transport in Pant's Cabinet; appointed as the Railways and Transport Minister in the Central Cabinet; also held the portfolios of Transport & Communications, Commerce and Industry, and Home Ministry in the Central cabinet; became Prime Minister of India in 1964; led India to victory over Pakistan in 1965 war.

PHOTO:

Lal Bahadur Shastri was the second Prime Minister of independent India. Though diminutive in physical stature he was a man of great courage and will. He successfully led country during the 1965 war with Pakistan. To mobilize the support of country during the war he coined the slogan of "Jai Jawan Jai Kisan". Lal Bahadur Sastri also played a key role in India's freedom struggle. He led his life with great simplicity and honesty and was a great source of inspiration for all the countrymen.

Lal Bahadur Shastri was born on October 2, 1904 at Mughalsarai, Uttar Pradesh. His parents were Sharada Prasad and Ramdulari Devi. Lal Bahadur's surname was Srivastava but he dropped it as he did not want to indicate his caste. Lal Bahadur's father was a school teacher and later on he became a clerk in the Revenue Office at Allahabad. Though Sharada Prasad was poor, he lived a life of honesty and integrity. Lal Bahadur lost his father when he was only one. Ramdulari Devi raised Lal Bahadur and her two daughters at her father's house.

There is a very famous incident regarding Lal Bahadur Shastri's childhood which took place when he was six years old. One day, while returning from school, Lal Bahadur and his friends went to an orchard that was on the way to home. Lal Bahadur Shastri was standing below while his friends climbed the trees to pluck mangoes. Meanwhile, the gardener came and caught hold of Lalbahadur Shastri. He scolded Lal Bahadur Shastri and started beating him. Lal Bahadur Shastri pleaded to gardener to leave him as he was orphan. Taking pity on Lal Bahadur, the gardener said, "Because you are an orphan, it is all the more important that you must learn better behavior." These words left a deep imprint on Lal Bahadur Shastri and he swore to behave better in the future.

Lal Bahadur stayed at his grandfather's house till he was ten. By that time he had passed the sixth standard examination. He went to Varanasi for higher education. In 1921 when Mahatma Gandhi launched the non-cooperation movement against British Government, Lal Bahadur Shastri, was only seventeen years old. When Mahatma Gandhi gave a call to the youth to come out of Government schools and colleges, offices and courts and to sacrifice everything for the sake of freedom, Lal Bahadur came out of his school. Though his mother and relatives advised him not to do so, he was firm in his decision. Lal Bahadur was arrested during the Non-cooperation movement but as he was too young he was let off.

After his release Lal Bahadur joined Kashi Vidya Peeth and for four years he studied philosophy. In 1926, Lal Bahadur earned the degree of "Shastri" After leaving Kashi Vidya Peeth, Lal Bahadur Shastri joined "The Servants of the People Society", which Lala Lajpat Rai had started in 1921. The aim of the Society was to train youths that were prepared to dedicate their lives in the service of the country. In 1927, Lal Bahadur Shastri married Lalitha Devi. The marriage ceremony was very simple and Shastriji took only a charkha (spinning wheel) and few yards of Khadi in dowry.

In 1930, Gandhiji gave the call for Civil Disobedience Movement. Lal Bahadur Shastri joined the movement and encouraged people not to pay land revenue and taxes to the government. He was arrested and put in jail for two and a half years. In jail Shastriji became familiar with the works of western philosophers, revolutionaries and social reformers. Lal Bahadur Shastri had great self respect. Once when he was in prison, one of his daughters fell seriously ill. The officers agreed to release him out for a short time but on condition that he should agree in writing not to take part in the freedom 'movement during this period. Lal Bahadur did not wish to participate in the freedom movement during his temporary release from prison; but he said that he would not give it in writing. He thought that it was against his self-respect to give it in writing.

After Second World War started in 1939, Congress launched "Individual Satyagraha" in 1940 to demand freedom. Lal Bahadur Shastri was arrested during Individual Satyagraha and released after one year. On August 8, 1942, Gandhiji gave the call for Quit India Movement. Lal Bahadur actively participated in the movement. He went underground but was later arrested. Lal Bahadur Shastri was released in 1945 along with other major leaders. He earned the praise of Pandit Govind Vallabh Pant by his hard work during the 1946 provincial elections. Lal Bahadur's administrative ability and organization skills came to the fore during this time. When Govind Vallabh Pant became the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, he appointed Lal Bahadur Shastri as his Parliamentary Secretary. In 1947, Lal Bahadur Shastri became the Minister of Police and Transport in Pant's Cabinet.

Lal Bahadur Sastri was the General Secretary of the Congress Party when the first general elections were held after India became Republic. Congress Party returned to power with a huge majority. In 1952, Jawahar Lal Nehru appointed Lal Bahadur Shastri as the Railways and Transport Minister in the Central Cabinet. Lal Bahadur Shastri's contribution in providing more facilities to travelers in third class compartments cannot be forgotten. He reduced the vast disparity between the first class and third class in the Railways. Lal Bahadur Shastri resigned from Railways in 1956, owning moral responsibility for a railway accident. Jawaharlal Nehru tried to persuade Shastriji but Lal Bahadur Shastri refused to budge from his stand. By his action Lal Bahadur Shastri set new standards of morality in public life.

In the next general elections when Congress returned to power, Lal Bahadur Shastri became the Minister for Transport and Communications and later the Minister for Commerce and Industry. He became the Home Minister in 1961, after the death of Govind Vallabh Pant. In the 1962 India-China war Shastriji played a key role in maintaining internal security of the country.

After the death of Jawaharlal Nehru in 1964, Lal Bahadur Shastri was unanimously elected as the Prime Minister of India. It was a difficult time and the country was facing huge challenges. There was food shortage in the country and on the security front Pakistan was creating problems. In 1965, Pakistan tried to take advantage of India's vulnerability and attacked India. Mild-mannered Lal Bahadur Shastri rose to the occasion and led the country ably. To enthuse soldiers and farmers he coined the slogan of "Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan". Pakistan lost the war and Shastriji's leadership was praised all over the world.

In January 1966, to broker peace between India and Pakistan, Russia mediated a meeting between Lal Bahadur Shastri and Ayub Khan in Tashkent, Russia. India and Pakistan signed the joint declaration under Russian mediation. Under the treaty India agreed to return to Pakistan all the territories occupied by it during the war. The joint declaration was signed on January 10, 1966 and Lal Bahadur Shastri died of heart attack on the same night.

LALA LAJAPAT RAI

: Lala Lajapat Rai

: 28.1.1865

: 17.11.1928

PHOTO :

HISTORY :

It was the evening of October 30, 1928. Standing on the platform at a crowded public meeting in Lahore City, a person known as the 'Lion of Punjab, 'said in an inspiring voice:

"Every blow on our bodies this afternoon is like a nail driven into the coffin of British imperialism."

Terrible blows had battered the chest and the body of the great man who made that stirring speech. The humiliation inflicted by the high-handedness of the British was more painful than the wounds.

On the morning of the seventeenth day after this, the great revolutionary died. Onward along the path he had trodden his followers marched towards freedom.

The great leader cut down by the high- handedness of the then imperialist Punjab Government was Lala Lajpat Rai.

The great patriot Lala Lajpat Rai was born on 28th January 1865 in Dhudika village of Ferozepur District of Punjab Province, His father Lala Radha Kishan was an Urdu teacher in a government school. He belonged to the family of Agarwals, a family noted for its love of freedom and self-respect. Although illiterate, Lajpat Rai's mother Gulab Devi was an ideal Hindu woman. It was from her that Lalaji imbibed patriotic sentiments.

Lalaji was a very intelligent student. He won scholarships. Poverty and sickness stood in the way of his higher education. He passed the Entrance Examination of the Calcutta University in the first class in 1880. The same year he also passed the Entrance Examination of Punjab University. Afterwards he joined the Lahore Government College. At the same time he studied law. Because of the poverty of the family his education was interrupted for two years.

The two years spent in Lahore were important in Lalaji's life. As he read the history of the past glory of India and the biographies of her great sons, the boy shed tears. The love of freedom and the keen desire to serve the country took root in him at that time. During those days the Arya Samaj founded by Swami Dayananda Saraswati was dynamic in social service. It was a time when enthusiastic Punjabi youths were attracted by the progressive ideals and reformist plans of the Arya Samaj. Lalaji was then hardly sixteen. When he joined the Arya Samaj in 1882 his life of social service began. Patriotism was kindled. The idea took root in his mind that the chains of Indian slavery should be broken.

Having passed the first examination in law in 1883 Lala could practice as a muktiar (a minor lawyer). He had also to bear the burden of running the family. Eighteen- year-old Lalaji practiced in the revenue court of Jagrav town. After passing the Pleaders' Examination he came to Hissar in South Punjab and commenced practice as a lawyer.

He had no thought of making money in his profession and settling down comfortably. He wanted to devote his life to the service of his country. He wanted to read the biography of Mazzini, the brave revolutionary of Italy. He could not get a copy of the book in India. He wrote to a friend in England and got it. Mazzini's bravery, magnanimity and patriotism thrilled him.

His life of six years in Hissar became the apprenticeship for public service. After the death of Swami Dayananda, Lalaji with his associates toiled to develop the Anglo- Vedic College. The three tenets of Arya Samaj are the reformation of society, the advancement of Hindu Dharma and educational progress. Lalaji earned a thousand rupees a month. He kept aside a part of his earnings to keep his father above want and arranged for the interest on it to be paid to his father. One tenth of his income was earmarked for work for the nation. The greater part of that sum was being used for Arya Samaj activities.

When the Lieutenant Governor visited Hissar, Lalaji pleaded that the Welcome Address to be presented to him should be in Urdu. To satisfy the British officer a speech had already been prepared in English. Lalaji's suggestion made everyone nervous. But without a trace of fear, he presented the Address in Urdu and there by invited the wrath of the British.

Most of his time was given to Arya Samaj activities. Working ceaselessly he set up branches of the Arya Samaj. He built up educational institutions. But he was not partial towards any community. He was elected unopposed to the Municipal Council from a constituency where there were a number of Muslims.

In 1888, still a lawyer, he entered politics. The Indian National Congress was fighting for the country's freedom. Realizing the dire need for freedom, Lalaji joined the Congress as a freedom fighter. Sir Syed Ahmed who was in the Congress had just then left it. He had begun to argue that Muslims should not join the Congress and that they should support the government. Lala wrote bitter open letters to him in the Urdu weekly Koh-i-noor'. The letters earned high praise in political circles. The same year in the Congress session at Allahabad, when Lalaji arrived with eighty delegates from Punjab, he received a tumultuous welcome. His heroic speech in Urdu there had a great effect on the Congress leaders. Lala was a young man of 23 years. His fame spread quickly in Congress.

The small town of Hissar proved inadequate for his growing social work. After qualifying to practice as an advocate in the Punjab High Court, he settled down in Lahore in 1892. The Congress session of 1893 was held at Lahore. The first Indian to become a member of the British Parliament, Dadabhai Naoroji, was the president of the session. Lalaji served as an enthusiastic volunteer.

Lalaji worked like a bee. There was no time for rest. When he was immersed in Congress work there was a split in the Arya Samaj. Lalaji gave a new shape to the D.A.V. College and stood by it.

Lalaji was not merely an outstanding politician but also an able writer. The biographies he wrote in Urdu are memorable. He wrote the biographies of the patriots Mazzini and Garibaldi who unified Italy. He also wrote outstanding books about Indian great men Shivaji, Sri Krishna and Dayananda Saraswati. The books on Mazzini and Shivaji contained passages, which encouraged people to fight for freedom. So the government even thought of arresting Lalaji.

The sense of service shown by Lalaji and his devoted endeavor to help the poor, the downtrodden and those in difficulties bestowed luster on his multifarious exertions. A terrible famine struck the Central Provinces in 1896. The draught shook people. No one can forget the part played by Lalaji at the time. Orphans and the destitute were at the mercy of the Christian missionaries and were being converted to Christianity. Lalaji began a movement to help the orphans. He saved 250 orphan children from Jabalpur, Bilaspur and other districts, brought them to Punjab and admitted them to the orphanages of the Arya Samaj. He realized that he did not have sufficient time for both social service and legal practice; so in 1898 he reduced his legal practice. In 1899 a worse famine struck Punjab, Rajasthan, Kathiawad and Central Provinces. Again Lalaji led the movement by the Arya Samaj to save helpless children.

It was a trying time for him. He organized an extraordinary movement. Not only were 2,000 helpless persons saved but they were also provided with food, clothing, education and employment. In this movement sometimes there were clashes with Christian missionaries. Government set up a famine relief commission in 1901 and got Lalaji's views. His account of famine conditions and his views led to a change in the government's attitude to the destitute. Hindus and people of other religions were able to establish orphanages for destitute children of their folds.

In 1905 an occasion arose for Lalaji to dive deper into another matter. There was an earthquake in Kangra district resulting in enormous loss of life and property. The Arya Samaj of Lahore set up a relief committee, as its secretary Lalaji toured Punjab province extensively and collected money for the committee. His service to the people at that time was unforgettable.

The same year general elections were being held in England, the Indian National Congress decided to send two representatives to acquaint the public with conditions in India. Lajpat Rai and Gopal Krishna Gokhale were the two representatives. When they returned from their visit to England, thousands of people welcomed them at the Lahore railway station. Students unhitched the horses and they pulled the carriage.

During his tour of England Lalaji told the people they’re about the conditions in India during the British rule. More than this, his reading of the situation was important. It become clear to him that Indians alone could mould their future and for that purpose, the government should be in their hands. He resolved that India should undertake the fight for freedom, the use of articles made in India and boycott of foreign goods. He put forth these views at the 1907 Congress session held in Surat City.

1907 witnessed a high-water mark in the adventurous life of Lalaji. That was a time of revolution when the winds of change were blowing across the country; new ideas and a new zest moved the people. There were riots in Lahore and Rawalpindi. In Meerut preparations were being made to observe the fifteenth anniversary of the first fight for freedom (1857). Peasants were upset on account of the proposal of the government to increase the water rates in Punjab. It was a grievous crime in the eyes of the government that Lalaji and certain lawyer’s addition to this, there were disturbances, supported the ryots.

Sir Densil lbbotson was the Lieutenant Governor of Punjab. He wrote to Lord Morley, then the minister in the British cabinet who was in charge of Indian affairs: "It appears that some leaders like Lalaji have sworn to drive the British out of India. An attempt is being made to kindle hatred Against Englishmen and break the government administrative machinery."

Those were days when there was a sense of fear in official circles. A poor Indian was murdered. A factual report appeared in newspapers. An attempt was made to foist the guilt on a Punjabi journalist. The people of Punjab protested against the mischief of the government. In addition to this, there were disturbances, because of unjust laws like the Colonial Settlement Act and Land Mortgage Amendment Act and because of increase in the tax on land and water rates. Sir Densil was perturbed. Without any reason he deported Lalaji and with him Ajit Singh (a relative of the great patriot Bhagat Singh) to Mandalay in Burma.

People all over the country opposed the unjust action of the government. Tilak wrote in the newspaper 'Kesari'- "if the British rulers act like the Russian Czars, the people of India will have to react as the people of Russia did." Government had to bow to the vigorous protests of the people and the legal profession; it had no choice. Government realized that the deportation order was improper and illegal; it brought Lalaji to Lahore on November 18 and set him free.

Lalaji was considered one of the famous trinity of the Congress radicals. The three great men were Lala Lajpat Rai of Punjab, Bal Gangadhar Tilak of Maharashtra and Bipin Chandra Pal of Bengal. The country affectionately called them Lal, Bal and Pal. There was a split between the radicals and the moderates in the Congress organization. Lalaji found that it was not possible to bring about an agreement between the two factions; he therefore kept out of the Congress for a few years.

In 1911 he re-entered the Lahore Municipal Council. When he stood for election to the Municipal Council his popularity was immense. Even the deaf, the dumb and disabled' people turned up to vote for him. A dumb voter brought a photograph of Lalaji to indicate that he would vote for Lalaji.

Lalaji re-entered Congress in 1912.

He left for England in April 1914 with the Congress delegation as a representative of Punjab. He had planned to be there for six months. But because of the outbreak of the First World War, he had to change his plans. It did not seem wise to return then. It was likely the British would keep him in detention for a long period. Lalaji went from England to America. His visit to America was a voluntary exile. In America he made a number of speeches about India and conditions of life in this country. He wrote a number of books. As part of the effort to develop the Indian agitation he established the Indian Home Rule League in New York. How could there be dearth of work for the Indian hero in America? He set up the 'India Information Bureau'. He started a journal 'Young India' and gave a fillip to the movement. He himself edited the paper. The paper expounded the Indian culture and explained in detail the necessity for Indian freedom. It attracted the attention of everybody. The circulation increased. Through this paper it became possible for not only Indians but also Americans and people of other countries to understand the aims and objects of Lalaji and to sympathize with India's aims. The movement gained support.

While in America he wrote two books: 'Arya Samaj’ and 'England's, Debt to India.' His life in America was not bed of roses. He himself cooked his food. He earned money for his living by writing books and articles. Germany was then at war with England. The German Government attempted to take advantage of the dissatisfaction of the Indians by enticing Lalaji. But he refused to be tempted.

While in America, Lalaji found time to visit Japan. In both the countries he made friendship and won the sympathy of influential people. He conducted himself in such a way that both countries came to trust him. Thus he made a name for himself. At the end of the great War in 1919 he wanted to return to India. The British Government would not give him a passport. In India in Jalianwalla Bagh of Amritsar, British soldiers fired on helpless Indians at a public meeting. Lajpat Rai got news of the dreadful massacre even when he was in New York. He was eager to join his countrymen. He got the passport at the end of the year. In December 1919 Lalaji came from New York to London. There he met the famous author Bernard Shaw and some socialist friends. Then he came to Paris.

Lalaji thus brought about a revolution in the attitudes of the people of England and America towards India. He returned in February 1920. Lokamanya Tilak, Jinnah and Shrimati Annie Besant accorded a heroic welcome to him. Welcome Addresses were presented to him in Bombay, Delhi and Lahore. He was elected as the president of the special session of the Congress held in September 1920.

Next year Mahatma Gandhi started the Non-cooperation Movement. The movement gained momentum in the country. Lalaji jumped into the agitation with his bosom friend, the revolutionary Ajit Singh. In response to Lalaji's stirring call, the whole of Punjab Province joined the movement. The agitation shook the firm foundations of the government. Government schools and colleges were boycotted. Work in courts and offices came to a halt. The people were firmly united against imperialism. Lalaji himself started a national school in Lahore. Tilak opened a political science institution. Thus enthusiastic youths found guidance. Lalaji undertook a whirlwind tour of Punjab for ten days for that purpose and collected nine lakh rupees. Full of reverence for him, people contributed money enthusiastically.

Lajpat Rai's organizing ability and heroic speeches were inspiring. Government was finding it difficult to face the intense Non-cooperation Movement growing day by day. All over the country there were agitation and hartals and the rulers were shaken. Lalaji became a dangerous person in the eyes of the government. In December 1921 Lalaji was arrested. The other leaders of the movement, Motilal Nehru and Chittaranjan Das were also imprisoned. Lalaji was sentenced to 18 months' rigorous imprisonment. Because of the people's protest and the pleadings by lawyers he was released after two months. It was one o' clock in the night when he was released. When he came to the door he was arrested again. He was tried for another offence and was sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for two years.

While in jail he fell ill and his health deteriorated. When the public learnt this vigorous agitation was started throughout the country for his release. Government released him. Lalaji went to Solan to improve his health.

As soon as his health improved Lalaji become active again. He joined the 'Swaraj Party' of Motilal Nehru. He was elected to the Central Legislative Assembly. By that time the Hindu Muslim unity move shaped by Mahatma Gandhi had failed.

Lalaji had to turn his attention to communal problems. He was himself influenced by the Arya Samaj and was a staunch supporter of the Hindu dharma. But he was aware of the need for Hindu Muslim unity in the fight for Swaraj. The Non-Cooperation movement was crumbling and ill feeling between different communities was reaching dangerous proportions. In the 1924 Hindu-Muslim riots Hindus suffered much in Kohat of North-West Frontier Province. In two days of riots not only were 150 Hindus killed but also 400 persons had also to be shifted to Rawalpindi. Mahatma Gandhi undertook a fast. There was a conference to bring about friendship among the followers of different religions and a national council was set up. But the problem was not solved. The Kohat tragedy pained and disappointed Lalaji. He had to stand by the helpless Hindu community. To counteract associations formed by the Muslims, Lalaji tirelessly fostered movements for 'Purification of Hinduism 'and 'Organization of Hinduism'. As long ago as 'in 1924 Lalaji expressed the fear that Muslims might want a division of India and demand a separate state for themselves. This shows his far- sightedness.

He presided over the Hindu Mahasabha held at Calcutta in 1925. The speech he made about Hindu dharma and the necessity to uphold it woke up the Hindus. In 1926 Lalaji participated in the International Labor Conference held at Geneva as a representative of workers in India. He also took part in similar conferences held in Britain and France.

Lalaji went to Europe in 1927 to improve his health. Katherine Mayo, a foreign journalist, visited India. She wrote a book called 'Mother India'. It was about Indian civilization, culture and life. She saw only sheer ignorance and filth in India and nothing good or decent. It gave a totally misleading picture of India. In an article Gandhiji protested and called it a 'gutter inspector's report'. The book Mayo wrote was published when Lalaji was in London. The book created uproar in India and Britain. People who were opposed to the freedom of India had given money for the publication of the book. Lalaji read it. He could not keep quiet. Soon after his return to India the first thing he did was to write a book 'Unhappy India.' He gave a fitting reply to the false propaganda of Miss Mayo.

The non-cooperation movement failed. Therefore there was a lull in political activities. In 1927 the British Government wanted a report on political reforms in India and on amending the Government of India Act. So it appointed a commission. The commission consisted of Sir John Simon and six other members. All of them were members of the British Parliament. There was not a single Indian as member. It was composed solely of White people. The commission was an insult to Indians. These White men were to shape the future of India. The people of India rose as one man against this step. Under Lalaji's leadership, it was resolved to boycott the Simon Commission.

Lajpat Rai moved a resolution in the Central Legislative Assembly in February 1928. "The present constitution of the Commission and its terms of reference are unworthy of acceptance by this House; therefore, this House advises the Government that it should have nothing to do with the Commission." He made an impassioned speech on that occasion. There were several English men and government officers in the Legislative Assembly. It was known that they would vote against the resolution. Lalaji appealed to the Indian members thus: "Let the members understand that they are slaves in the eyes of the British Government and of the world. When they vote on the resolution let them remember that in 1919, because of a single epidemic, many people died in our country. Let them remember that in this country ten crores of people do not have even one meal a day."

What right did the British Parliament have to frame a constitution for India? That was Lalaji's fearless question. Only Indians had the right to decide about their future. They were determined about it. The report of Motilal Nehru and his colleagues was ready. It had protested against the British attitude. Lalaji toured the whole of India to give publicity to the Nehru report. He asserted: "Those who oppose the report are the enemies of Swaraj and enemies of India."

The 30th of October 1928 was an evil day in India's political history. The Simon Commission was expected to arrive in Lahore on that day. The rulers had taken precautions to prevent a public protest. Prohibitory orders were enforced. Lalaji was ill that day. Still he led the procession to protest against the Commission.

When the Simon Commission arrived, on one side there where traitors to welcome them. On another side the revolutionaries demonstrated against the Commission. In the protest march youths staged a tremendous show. A hartal was observed that day; there was a sea of black flags. Thousands and thousands of hearts and voices shouted "Simon, go back!" The lion of Punjab, Lala Lajpat Rai, led the procession. When the trains reached the station, the cry "Simon, go back!" hit the sky. Police security arrangements crumbled. The crowd was so thick that movement was impossible. The Police charged with their Lathis (stout sticks). The blood of innocent people began to flow. Lalaji's friends Sukhdev, Yashpal, Bhagavati Charan and others surrounded him, in order to protect him. Police officer Scot saw Lalaji and his bodyguards. He ordered the Police to beat the bodyguards. A Police officer named Sanders came forward to do the job. The Police Lathis rained blows on Lalaji - on the head and all over the body. Lala realized this incident would lead to conflict and a bloodbath. He told the huge crowd of revolutionary youths: "Leave this place." The crowd dispersed.

The same evening there was a mammoth public meeting. The despicable action of the Police was severely condemned and the Simon Commission was boycotted. Police Deputy Superintendent Neal was present at the meeting. Lalaji turned to Neal and said in English so that he could understand him: "The blows, which fell on me today, are the last nails driven into the coffin of British Imperialism."

One word from Lajpat Rai to the youths would have been enough; they would have let loose rivers of blood. But Lalaji practiced non-violence strictly. The country had to restrain its anger. In the very week of the incident Lalaji attended the All-India Congress Committee and all-party meetings. He grew weak and returned to Lahore.

Lalaji fell ill and died of a heart attack on 17th November 1928. The whole of India knew that his death was a result of the lathi blows. A deliberate murder by the Police!

More than a lakh of people took up in his funeral procession.

The movement did not abate though Lalaji died. In fact it acquired a new vigor. The Congress Party began the no-tax campaign. Punjab could not easily forget Lalaji's death. To avenge the cowardly Whites' attack on their beloved leader, the people of Punjab rose in fierce revolt. The young revolutionary Bhagat Singh murdered the Police officer Sanders, mainly responsible for the attack on Lalaji, in a dreadful manner. This happened on December 17, exactly one month after Lalaji's death. Next year the British sentenced Bhagat Singh to death.

The lesson which the Lion of Punjab Lala Lajpat Rai taught the country was to be brave. To the Indians in the chains of slavery his message was "Begging or prayer cannot bring freedom. You can win it only through struggle and sacrifice." Because throughout his life he fought fearlessly, he was called the Lion of Punjab. The sacrifice of his life was like a warrior's death in battle.

Lala Lajpat Rai the martyr was a store- house of many good qualities. Efficiency, tireless industry and patriotism gave lustre to his personality. He was friendly. For the sake of his country he won a large number of friends both in India and abroad. From the platform he spoke for hours eloquently. His speeches were fiery and galvanizing. People heard him spellbound and his words opened their eyes. He was indeed a lion among men.

He was a brilliant man and he wasdevoted, in body and mind, to the cause of education. The D.A.V. College, the National College, the Tilak School of Politics and others are living monuments to his patriotism. His service in the field of journalism was no less valuable. He founded the Urdu weekly Vande Mataram and the English weekly 'The People' - and both maintained high standards. In the field of commerce too, he will be remembered forever. It was Lalaji who established the Punjab National Bank and the Lakshmi Insurance Company. As a member of the Arya Samaj he worked incessantly. He fought against Untouchability. When Gandhiji started the 'Harijan Sevak Sangh' he worked for it. He was like a father to the orphans. He was responsible for starting numerous orphanages in the country. The Gulab Devi Hospital and the Servants of People Society are living monuments to the memory of that great man.

Lalaji was one of those who sowed the seeds of socialism in India. He was well acquainted with Henry Meyers, Beatrice Webb, Lansbury and others who promoted the growth of socialism in Britain. He was in the vanguard of labor organization. He founded the 'All-India Trade Union Congress' and was himself its president. He started an organized effort to improve the conditions of the working class. He pleaded that a part of the profits of an industry should be given to the workmen.

The people of India were in chains, and they had to be aroused. They had to be organized. Lalaji was the symbol of the power, which did this. As Mahatma Gandhi said: "So long as the sun shines in the Indian sky, persons like Lalaji will not die."

LOKAMANYA KESHAV BAL GANGADHAR TILAK

: LOKAMANYA KESHAV BAL GANGADHAR TILAK

: 23 July 1856

: 1 August 1920

: Lokamanya Tilak

PHOTO:

HISTORY:

Born in a well-cultured Brahim family on July 23, 1856 in Ratangari, Maharashtra, Bal Gangadhar Tilak was a multifacet personality. He is considered to be the ‘Father of Indian Unrest’. He was a scholar of Indian history, Sanskrit, mathematics, astronomy and Hinduism

He had imbibed values, cultures and intelligence from his father Gangadhar Ramchandra Tilak who was a Sanskrit scholar and a famous teacher. At the age of 10, Bal Gangadhar went to Pune with his family as his father was transferred. In Pune, he was educated in an Anglo-Vernacular school. After some years he lost his mother and at the age of 16 his father too he got married to a 10-year-old girl named Satyabhama while he was studying in Matriculation. In 1877, Tilak completed his studies and continued with studying Law.

With an aim to impart teachings about Indian culture and national ideals to India’s youth, Tilak along with Agarkar and Vishnushstry founded the ‘Deccan Education Society’. Soon after that Tilak started two weeklies, ‘Kesari’ and ‘Marathi’ to highlight plight of Indians. He also started the celebrations of Ganapati Festival and Shivaji Jayanti to bring people close together and join the nationalist movement against British. In fighting for people’s cause, twice he was sentenced to imprisonment.

He launched Swadeshi Movenment and believed that ‘Swaraj is my birth right and I shall have it’. This quote inspired millions of Indians to join the freedom struggle. With the goal of Swaraj, he also built ‘Home Rule League’. Tilak constantly traveled across the country to inspire and convince people to believe in Swaraj and fight for freedom. He was constantly fighting against injustice and one sad day on August 1, 1920, he died.

Bal Gangadhar Tilak was one of the prime architects of modern India and is still living in the hearts of millions of India.

SUBRAMANIYA BHARATHIYAR

: SUBRAMANIYA BHARATHIYAR

: 11.12.1882

: 11.9.1921

:BHARATHI,MAHAKAVI

PHOTOS :

Mahakavi Subramaniya Bharathi was born on 11 December 1882 in Ettiyapuram in Tamil Nadu. Bharathi died on 11 September 1921. In a relatively short life span of 39 years, Bharathi left an indelible mark as the poet of Tamil nationalism and Indian freedom.

Bharathi's mother died in 1887 and two years later, his father also died. At the age of 11, in 1893 his prowess as a poet was recognised and he was accorded the title of 'bharathi'. He was a student at Nellai Hindu School and in 1897 he married Sellamal. Thererafter, from 1898 to 1902, he lived in Kasi.

Bharathi worked as a school teacher and as a journal editor at various times in his life. As a Tamil poet he ranked with Ilanko, Thiruvalluvar and Kamban. His writings gave new life to the Tamil language - and to Tamil national consciousness. He involved himself actively in the Indian freedom struggle. It is sometimes said of Bharathi that he was first an Indian and then a Tamil. Perhaps, it would be more correct to say that he was a Tamil and because he was a Tamil he was also an Indian. For him it was not either or but both - it was not possible for him to be one without also being the other.

Bharathi often referred to Tamil as his 'mother'.

At the sametime, he was fluent in many languages including Bengali, Hindi, Sanskrit, Kuuch, and English and frequently translated works from other languages into Tamil. His

(among all the languages we know, we do not see anywhere, any as sweet as Tamil) was his moving tribute to his mother tongue. That many a Tamil web site carries the words of that song on its home page in cyber space today is a reflection of the hold that those words continue to have on Tamil minds and Tamil hearts. His,

was Bharathi's salute to the Tamil nation and many a Tamil child has learnt and memorised those moving words from a very young age - and I count myself as one of them.Bharathi was a Hindu. But his spirituality was not limited. He sang to the Hindu deities, and at the same time he wrote songs of devotion to Jesus Christ and Allah. Bharathi was a vigorous campaigner against casteism. He wrote in 'Vande Matharam' :

We shall not look at caste or religion, All human beings in this land - whether they be those who preach the vedas or who belong to other castes - are one Bharathi lived during an eventful period of Indian history. Gandhi, Tilak, Aurobindo and V.V.S.Aiyar were his contemporaries. He involved himself with passion in the Indian freedom struggle. His 'Viduthalai, Viduthalai' was not only a clarion call for freedom from alien rule but also addressed the need to unite a people across caste barriers -

He saw a great India. He saw an India of skilled workers and an educated people. He saw an India where women would be free. His

expressed the depth of his love and the breadth of his vision for India.

Bharathi served as Assistant Editor of the Swadeshamitran in 1904.He participated in the 1906 All India Congress meeting in Calcutta (chaired by Dadabhai Naoroji) where the demand for 'Swaraj' was raised for the first time. Bharathi supported the demand wholeheartedly and found himself in the militant wing of the Indian National Congress together with Tilak and Aurobindo. Aurobindo writing on the historic 1906 Congress had this to say:

"We were prepared to give the old weakness of the congress plenty of time to die out if we could get realities recognised. Only in one particular have we been disappointed and that is the President's address. But even here the closing address with which Mr.Naoroji dissolved the Congress, has made amends for the deficiencies of his opening speech.

He once more declared Self-Government, Swaraj, as in an inspired moment he termed it, to be our one ideal and called upon the young men to achieve it. The work of the older men had been done in preparing a generation which were determined to have this great ideal and nothing else; the work of making the ideal a reality lies lies with us. We accept Mr. Naoroji's call and to carry out his last injunctions will devote our lives and, if necessary, sacrifice them." (Bande Mataram, 31 December 1906) Many Tamils will see the parallels with the Vaddukoddai Resolution of 1976 which proclaimed independence for the Tamils of Eelam - the work of older men determined to have 'this great ideal and nothing else' and the later determination of Tamil youth to devote their lives, and 'if necessary sacrifice them' to make that ideal a reality.

Tamil youth to devote their lives, and 'if necessary sacrifice them' to make that ideal a reality.

In April 1907, he became the editor of the Tamil weekly 'India'. At the same time he also edited the English newspaper 'Bala Bharatham'. He participated in the historic Surat Congress in 1907, which saw a sharpening of the divisions within the Indian National Congress between the militant wing led by Tilak and Aurobindo and the 'moderates'. Subramanya Bharathi supported Tilak and Aurobindo together with 'Kapal Otiya Thamilan' V.O.Chidambarampillai and Kanchi Varathaachariyar. Tilak openly supported armed resistance and the Swadeshi movement.

These were the years when Bharathi immersed himself in writing and in political activity. In Madras, in 1908, he organised a mammoth public meeting to celebrate 'Swaraj Day'. His poems 'Vanthe Matharam', 'Enthayum Thayum', 'Jaya Bharath' were printed and distributed free to the Tamil people.

In 1908, he gave evidence in the case which had been instituted by the British against 'Kappal Otiya Thamizhan', V.O.Chidambarampillai. In the same year, the proprietor of the 'India' was arrested in Madras. Faced with the prospect of arrest, Bharathi escaped to Pondicherry which was under French rule.

Portrait of Bharathy by K.Bashyam (Arya) at Government Museuem, Chennai From there Bharathi edited and published the 'India' weekly. He also edited and published 'Vijaya', a Tamil daily, Bala Bharatha, an English monthly, and 'Suryothayam' a local weekly of Pondicherry. Under his leadership the Bala Bharatha Sangam was also started. The British waylaid and stopped remittances and letters to the papers. Both 'India' and 'Vijaya' were banned in British India in 1909.

The British suppression of the militancy was systematic and thorough. Tilak was exiled to Burma. Aurobindo escaped to Pondicherry in 1910. Bharathi met with Aurobindo in Pondicherry and the discussions often turned to religion and philosophy. He assisted Aurobindo in the 'Arya' journal and later 'Karma Yogi' in Pondicherry. In November 1910, Bharathi released an 'Anthology of Poems' which included 'Kanavu'.

V.V.S. Aiyar also arrived in Pondicherry in 1910 and the British Indian patriots, who were called 'Swadeshis' would meet often. They included Bharathi, Aurobindo and V.V.S.Aiyar. R.S.Padmanabhan in his Biography of V.V.S.Aiyar writes:

"All of them, whether there was any warrant against them or not, were constantly being watched by British agents in Pondicherry. Bharathi was a convinced believer in constitutional agitation. Aurobindo had given up politics altogether... and Aiyar had arrived in their midst with all the halo of a dedicated revolutionary who believed in the cult of the bomb and in individual terrorism."

In 1912, Bharathy published his Commentaries on the Bhavad Gita in Tamil as well as Kannan Paatu, Kuyil Paatu and Panjali Sabatham. After the end of World War I, Bharathi entered British India near Cuddalore in November 1918. He was arrested and imprisoned in the Central prison in Cuddalore in custody for three weeks - from 20 November 20 to 14 December.

Cell in Central Prison, Cuddalore where Bharathy was imprisoned He was released after he was prevailed upon to give an undertaking to the British India government that he would eschew all political activities. These were years of hardship and poverty. (Eventually, the General Amnesty Order of 1920 removed all restrictions on his movement). Bharathy met with Mahatma Gandhi in 1919 and in 1920, Bharathy resumed editorship of the Swadeshamitran in Madras. That was one year before his death in 1921. Today, more than 80 years later, Subaramanya Bharathy stands as an undying symbol of Indian freedom and a vibrant Tamil nationalism.

Mahakavi Bharathy Memorial Museum, Pondicherry P.S.Sundaram in his biographical sketch of Subramania Bharathy concludes:

"Though Bharathi died so young, he cannot be reckoned with Chatterton and Keats among the inheritors of 'unfulfilled renown'. His was a name to conjure with, at any rate in South India, while he was still alive. But his fame was not so much as a poet as of a patriot and a writer of patriotic songs. His loudly expressed admiration for Tilak, his fiery denunciations in the Swadeshamitran, and the fact that he had to seek refuge in French territory to escape the probing attentions of the Government of Madras, made him a hero and a 'freedom fighter'. His lilting songs were on numerous lips, and no procession or public meeting in a Tamil district in the days of 'non-cooperation' could begin, carry on or end without singing a few of them... Bharathi's love of Tamil, both the language as it was in his own day and the rich literature left as a heritage, was no less than his love of India... When he claims for Valluvan, Ilango and Kamban, Bharathi does so not as an ignorant chauvinist but as one who has savoured both the sweetness of these writers and the strength and richness of others in Sanskrit and English.

MANGAL PANDEY

: Mangal Pandey

: 19.7.1827

: PANDEY

PHOTO :

Mangal Pandey was born on 19 July 1827 in the village of Nagwa in the Ballia district of Uttar Pradesh. A sepoy in the 34th Regiment of the Bengal Native Infantry (BNI) of the English East India Company, he entered the annals of Indian history for attacking his British officers, sparking off the First War of Indian Independence or as the British termed it, the Sepoy Mutiny of 1857. At Barrackpore near Kolkata on March 29, 1857, Pandey attacked and injured his British sergeant, besides wounding an adjutant. A native soldier prevented him from killing the adjutant and the sergant-major. He was arrested and sentenced to death. He was hanged on April 8, 1857.

The primary reason behind Mangal Pandey's behavior was because of a new type of bullet cartridge used in the Enfield P-53 rifle. It was rumoured that the cartridge was greased with animal fat (pig and cow fat), which neither Hindus nor Muslims consumed. The cartridges had to be bitten off to remove the cover, which was detested by both the Hindu and Muslim soldiers in the army. The general feeling was that British intentionally did it. What added to the discontent was that the Commandant of the 34th BNI(Bengal Native Infantry) was a known Christian preacher.

There are many who have questioned whether Mangal Pandey was a brave martyr or one who attacked his officer under intoxication. The Bollywood movie, The Rising in 2005 was based on the life and times of Mangal Pandey. His life was also the subject of a stage play titled The Roti Rebellion.

RAM PRASAD BISMIL

: RAM PRASAD BISMIL.

: 1897

: 1927

: RAM PRASAD

PHOTO :

HISTORY:

Ram Prasad Bismil was the famous freedom fighter who was involved in the historic Kakori train robbery. He was born in 1897 at Shahjahanpur, Uttar Pradesh. His father Muralidhar was an employee of Shahjahanpur Municipality. Ramaprasad learnt Hindi from his father and was sent to learn Urdu from Moulvi. He wanted to join an English medium school and got admission in one of such schools despite his father's disapproval.

Ramaprasad joined Arya Samaj. He was also very talented in writing poetry. All of his poems have the intense patriotic feeling. He always wanted to see India as a free nation and dedicated himself to the cause of the country. His team members consisted of great freedom fighters like Ashfaqulla Khan, Chandrasekhar Azad, Bhagawati Charan, Rajguru and many more. Ramaprasad used to take advices related to religion and politics from great patriot and scholar Swami Somadevji.

The practice of Brahmacharya inspired him a lot and he became an ardent follower of it. He got himself engaged in the volunteering of Shahjahanpur Seva Samithi. In order to get people's attention, he published a pamphlet named 'A Message to My Countrymen'. Ramaprasad made many Hindi translations of Bengali writings. Some of his works include:

The Bolshevik Programme
A Sally of the Mind
Swadeshi Rang
Catherine

Yogic Sadhana of Rishi Aurobindo was translated by Ramaprasad. All of his works were published in the series called 'Sushil Mala'. He wrote his autobiography while he was in the cell.

On 9th August, 1925, Ram Prasad Bismil along with his fellow followers looted the money of the British government from the train while it was passing through Kakori, Lucknow. Except Chandrashekhar Azad, all other members of the group were arrested. Ram Prasad Bismil along with others were given capital punishment. This great freedom fighter of india was executed on 19th December, 1927.

Biography of Ram Prasad Bismil – A Great Revolutionary Poet

“Even if I have to face death a thousand times for the sake of my Motherland, I shall not be sorry. Oh Lord ! Grant me a hundred births in Bharat. But grant me this, too, that each time I may give up my life in the service of the Mother land.’ -Bismil

Rama Prasad was born at Shahjahanpur in Uttar Pradesh in 1897. His ancestors belonged to the Thomarghar area of Gwalior State. His village was situated adjacent to the British administered provinces on the banks of the river Chambal. People of the Chambal valley are fearless, sturdy and brave. For generations several states had tried to establish their dominance over them but failed.

Ram Prasad’s father Muralidhar was a simple man. He had only a little education and was employed in Shahjahanpur Municipality. He was tired of service and switched over to an independent life. He began to lend money on interest and hired out carts for his livelihood. His first son lived only for a few days and then expired. Ram prasad was his second son and so darling of his family. In his seventh year his father started teaching him Hindi. He was also sent to a Moulvi to learn Urdu. Later he was sent to a school. He was fourteen years old by the time he completed the fourth standard in Urdu. By then the habit of reading Urdu novels had taken hold of him. He needed money to buy the novels, but his father would not give him money. So he started stealing money from his father’s safe. He had also learnt smoking and occasionally he even used bhang (charas). As a result he failed twice in the fifth standard.

As his father came to know about his habits of stealing he got the lock of the safe changed. Ram Prasad expressed his desire to join an English school. His father did agree first but his mother’s support enabled him to join an English school.

Once a priest came to the temple near his house. He took a liking for young Ram Prasad. Under his healthy influence Ram Prasad gradually gave up the bad habits he had cultivated. He also learnt the rituals of worship. At school,too,he found a good friend Sushil Chandra Sen and gave up smoking under his company.

A gentleman by name Munshi Indrajeet once saw young Ram Prasad performing worship and was very much pleased. He taught Ram Prasad’ Sandhya- vandana’ (the traditional prayers). He described him the deals of Arya Sarmaj. Ram Prasad read the Sathyartha Praksha’ by the great sage Swami Dayanand. This book influenced him deeply. Realizing the importance of Brahmacharya , Ram Prasad practiced it in word and spirit. He gave up the evening meal. He also gave up savory and sour dishes and use of salt. The practice of Brahmacharya and regular exercises made his face radiant and his body strong as steel.

At that time, Swami Somadevji, a leader of the Arya Samaj, came to Shahjahanpur and stayed there to improve his health. He was very weak because of loss of blood. Young Ram Prasad devoted himself to the service of Swami Somadevji. Swami Somadevji was proficient in Yoga too. He suggested some good books for Ram Prasad to read. Under his guidance Ram Prasad’s views on religion and political subjects grew clearer. In the year 1916, Bhai Paramanandji was sentenced to death in -the Lahore Conspiracy case. He had written a book with the title’ Thavasi q Hindu’. Ram Prasad read the book and appreciated it immensely. He came to admire Paramanandji. When he heard about the death sentence, his blood boiled and he took a vow that he would settle scores with the British Government for this great injustice. He told Guru Somadevj i about his vow. The Guru remarked, “It is easy to take a vow but hard to keep it.” Then Ram Prasad touched the feet of Guru Somadevji and declared, “if have the grace of these sacred feet my vow will surely be fulfilled; nothing can come in the way. “This was the first step in the revolutionary life of Ram Prasad.

After some time Guru Samadevji passed away. Ram Prasad had come up to the ninth standard. He was active as an enthusiastic volunteer in the Shahjahanpur Seva Samithi. The Indian National Congress was to have its annual session at Lucknow. There were two groups in the Congress at that time. One group consisted of liberals, who were opposed to any direct action against the British Government the other group was that of extremists who believed in fighting the British Government and attaining full independence. Lokamanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak was their leader. Tilak was expected to participate in the session and so the extremists had gathered in large numbers. Ram Prasad also went to Lucknow. The liberals were in a majority in the Reception Committee.

They had not made any elaborate arrangements to welcome Tilak. He was just to be received at the railway station. But the young men desired that Tilak should be taken in a procession through the city. With a student of the M. A. class as their leader they gathered at the rai1way station. As soon as Tilak got off the railway carriage, the volunteers of the Reception Committee surrounded him and took him to the waiting car. The M.A. student and Ram Prasad leaped forward and sat in front of the car. “If the car is to move, let it move over our bodies,” they declared. The members of the Reception Committee and Tilak himself tried to dissuade the~but they didn’t budge. Their friends hired a coach, set free the horses and then drew the coach. Tilak was made to sit in the coach and taken in a procession. All along the way flowers were showered on Lokamanya Tilak.

Ram Prasad Bismil was a brave revolutionary who gave up his life smilingly for the sake of the Motherland. He was persecuted by an enraged foreign government, hunted by the police and betrayed by follow workers. And yet he lit the fire of revolution to bum down the slavery. He was the brave leader of the Kakori Rail Dacoity episode. His poetry is also a lamp lighted at the altar of the Motherland. Kakori is a village near Lucknow. It became famous because the attack on the train took place nearby.

It was the evening of the 9th of August 1925; the number eight down train was passing near Kakori. Ram Prasad and his nine revolutionary followers pulled the chain and stopped it. They looted the money belonging to the government, kept in the Guard’s carriage. Excepting that one passenger was killed by an accidental shot, there was no bloodshed. This extremely well planned dacoity shaked the British government. After a month of detailed preliminary inquiries and elaborate preparations the government cast its net wide for the revolutionaries. Arrest warrants were issued not only against the ten participants but also against other leaders of the Hindusthan Republican Association. With the lone exception of Chandrashekhar Azad, all participants were caught.

The case went on for over a year and a half, Ram Prasad, Ashfaqullah, Roshan Singh and Rajendra Lahiri all four were sentenced to death. A strong campaign was organized throughout India to save the lives of these revolutionary heroes. All the leaders of public life appealed to the British Government to .show mercy to the condemned men. But the Government was unyielding. It was the 18th of December 1927. A middle-aged lady was waiting at the main gates of the Gorakhpur Central Jail. Her face was radiant but anxiety was writ large on it. She was eagerly waiting to be called into the prison. By that time her husband also arrived there. He was surprised that his wife was there before him. He also sat down to wait for the call.

Another young man came there. He was not related to them. He knew that the couple would be permitted to enter the prison.But how could he manage to enter? This was his problem. The officials of the prison called in the husband and the wife. The Youngman followed them. The guard stopped him and rudely asked, “Who are you?” “Permit him also, brother. He is my sister’s son”, the lady said in an entreating voice. The guard relented.

All the three entered the prison to visit a freedom fighter that was to face his death on the morrow.The freedom fighter was brought there in chains. They were looking like ornaments on him. This was the last time that he could see his mother, the last time he could address her as ‘Mother’. At this thought grief welled up in him. He stood speechless and tears rolled down his cheeks. In a firm voice the mother said,I had thought of my son as a great hero. I was thinking that the British Government would shiver at the very mention of his name. I never taught that my son would be afraid of death.lf you would die weeping, why did you take up such activities?”

The officials were astounded at the firmness of the mother. The freedom fighter replied, “Mother dear, these are not tears off eye -the fear of death, these are tears of joy-joy at beholding so brave as mother!”

The brave son of that brave mother was Ram Prasad Bismil. He was the leader of the famous Kakori Rail Dacoity case.The last meeting ended. Next morning Ram Prasad got up earlier than usual, bathed and said his morning prayers. He wrote hi last letter to his mother. Then he sat down with a calm mind awaiting his death.The officials came and removed his chains. They took him from the prison cell-towards his death.He was completely untroubled and walked like a hero. The officials were amazed. As he moved to the gallows he joyfully chanted ‘Vande Matharam’ and ‘Bharat Matha ki Jai’. At the top of his voice he shouted down with the British Empire.” Then he calmly recited prayers like ‘Vishwani deva savithahadunithani .... And embraced death. As he was being executed, there was a strong guard around the prison. When he was dead the officials brought out the dead body. Not only his parents but also hundreds of his countrymen were waiting in tears.

Ram Prasad Bismil joined the select band of martyrs who dreamt of a free India and made the supreme sacrifice, so that the dream might come true. ‘Bismil’ is the penname of Ram Prasad. As ‘Bismil’ he is well known as a great revolutionary poet in Hindi. At the end of his autobiography, he has reproduced some selected poems. Every line of his poems throbs with patriotic fervor. In one poem he prays: ‘Even if I have to face death a thousand times for the sake of my Motherland, I shall not be sorry. Oh Lord! Grant me a hundred births in Bharat. But grant me this, too, that each time I may give up my life in the service of the Motherland.’

In a poem written just before going to the gallows, he prays: “Oh Lord ! Thy will be done. You are unique. Grant me this boon, that to my last breath and the last drop of my blood, I may think of you and be immersed in your work.”

SARDAR VALLABHBAI PATEL

: SARDAR VALLABHBAI PATEL

: 31.10.1875

: 15.12.1950

: PATEL,IRON MAN

PHOTO :

HISTORY:

Achievements: Successfully led Kheda Satyagraha and Bardoli revolt against British government; elected Ahmedabad's municipal president in 1922, 1924 and 1927; elected Congress President in 1931; was independent India's first Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister; played a key role in political integration of India; conferred Bharat Ratna in 1991.

Sardar Patel was popularly known as Iron Man of India. His full name was Vallabhbhai Patel. He played a leading role in the Indian freedom struggle and became the first Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister of India. He is credited with achieving political integration of India.

Vallabhbhai Patel was born on October 31, 1875 in Nadiad, a small village in Gujarat. His father Jhaverbhai was a farmer and mother Laad Bai was a simple lady. Sardar Vallabhai's early education took place in Karamsad. Then he joined a school in Petlad. After two years he joined a high school in a town called Nadiad. He passed his high school examination in 1896. Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel was a brilliant student throughout his schooling.

Vallabhbhai wanted to become a barrister. To realize this ambition he had to go to England. But he did not have the financial means to even join a college India. In those days a candidate could study in private and sit for an examination in Law. Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel borrowed books from a lawyer of his acquaintance and studied at home. Occasionally he attended courts of law and listened attentively to the arguments of lawyer. Vallabhbhai passed the Law examination with flying colours.

Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel started his Law practice in Godhra. Soon his practice flourished. He got married to Jhaberaba. In 1904, he got a baby daughter Maniben, and in 1905 his son Dahyabhai was born. Vallabhbhai sent his elder brother Vitthalbhai, who himself was a lawyer, to England for higher studies in Law. Patel was only thirty-three years old when his wife died. He did not wish to marry again. After his brother's return, Vallabhbhai went to England. He studied with single-minded devotion and stood first in the Barrister-at-Law Examination.

Sardar Patel returned to India in 1913 and started his practice in Ahmedabad. Soon he became popular. At the urging of his friends, Patel contested and won elections to become the sanitation commissioner of Ahmedabad in 1917. Sardar Patel was deeply impressed by Gandhiji's success in Champaran Satyagraha. In 1918, there was a drought in the Kheda division of Gujarat. Peasants asked for relief from the high rate of taxes but the British government refused. Gandhiji took up peasants cause but could not devote his full time in Kheda. He was looking for someone who could lead the struggle in his absence. At this point Sardar Patel volunteered to come forward and lead the struggle. He gave up his lucrative legal practice and entered public life.

Vallabhbhai successfully led peasants revolt in Kheda and the revolt ended in 1919 when the British government agreed to suspend collection of revenue and roll back the rates. Kheda Satyagraha turned Vallabhbhai Patel into a national hero. Vallabhbhai supported Gandhi's Non-Cooperation Movement, and as president of the Gujarat Congress, helped in organizing bonfires of British goods in Ahmedabad. He gave up his English clothes and started wearing Khadi. Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel was elected Ahmedabad's municipal president in 1922, 1924 and 1927. During his terms, Ahmedabad was extended a major supply of electricity and underwent major education reforms. Drainage and sanitation systems were extended over all the city.

In 1928, Bardoli Taluka in Gujarat suffered from floods and famine. In this hour of distress the British government raised the revenue taxes by thirty percent. Sardar Patel took up cudgels on behalf of the farmers and appealed to the Governor to reduce the taxes. The Governor refused and the government even announced the date of the collection of the taxes. Sardar Patel organized the farmers and told them not to pay even a single pie of tax. The government tried to repress the revolt but ultimately bowed before Vallabhbhai Patel. It was during the struggle and after the victory in Bardoli that caused intense excitement across India, that Patel was increasingly addressed by his colleagues and followers as Sardar.

Disobedience Movement in 1930. After the signing of Gandhi-Irwin pact in 1931, Sardar Patel was released and he was elected Congress president for its 1931 session in Karachi. Upon the failure of the Round Table Conference in London, Gandhiji and Sardar Patel were arrested in January 1932 and imprisoned in the Yeravada Central Jail. During this term of imprisonment, Sardar Patel and Mahatma Gandhi grew close to one another, and the two developed a close bond of affection, trust, and frankness without reserve. Sardar Patel was finally released in July 1934.

In August 1942, the Congress launched the Quit India Movement. The government jailed all the important leaders of the Congress, including Vallabhai Patel. All the leaders were released after three years. After achieving independence on 15th of August 1947, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru became the first Prime Minister of independent India and Sardar Patel became the Deputy Prime Minister. He was in charge of Home Affairs, Information and Broadcasting and the Ministry of States.

There were 565 princely states in India at that time. Some of the Maharajas and Nawabs who ruled over these were sensible and patriotic. But most of them were drunk with wealth and power. They were dreaming of becoming independent rulers once the British quit India. They argued that the government of free India should treat them as equals. Some of them went to the extent of planning to send their representatives to the United Nations Organization. Patel invoked the patriotism of India's monarchs, asking them to join in the freedom of their nation and act as responsible rulers who cared about the future of their people. He persuaded the princes of 565 states of the impossibility of independence from the Indian republic, especially in the presence of growing opposition from their subjects. With great wisdom and political foresight, he consolidated the small kingdoms. The public was with him. He tackled the Nizam of Hyderabad and the Nawab of Junagarh who initially did not want to join India. Sardar Patel's untiring efforts towards the unity of the country brought success. He united a scattered nation without much bloodshed. Due to the achievement of this massive task, Sardar Patel got the title of 'Iron Man'. Sardar Patel died of cardiac arrest on December 15, 1950. For his services to the nation Sardar Patel was conferred with Bharat Ratna in 1991.

SUBHAS CHANDRA BOSE

: SUBHAS CHANDRA BOSE

: January 23, 1897

: August 18, 1945

: NETHAJI

Achievements: Passed Indian Civil Services Exam; elected Congress President in 1938 and 1939; formed a new party All India Forward block; organized Azad Hind Fauj to overthrow British Empire from India.

PHOTO :

Subhas Chandra Bose, affectionately called as Netaji, was one of the most prominent leaders of Indian freedom struggle. Though Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru have garnered much of the credit for successful culmination of Indian freedom struggle, the contribution of Subash Chandra Bose is no less. He has been denied his rightful place in the annals of Indian history. He founded Indian National Army (Azad Hind Fauj) to overthrow British Empire from India and came to acquire legendary status among Indian masses.

Subhas Chandra Bose was born on January 23, 1897 in Cuttack, Orissa. His father Janaki Nath Bose was a famous lawyer and his mother Prabhavati Devi was a pious and religious lady. Subhas Chandra Bose was the ninth child among fourteen siblings. Subhas Chandra Bose was a brilliant student right from the childhood. He topped the matriculation examination of Calcutta province and graduated with a First class in Philosophy from the Scottish Churches College in Calcutta. He was strongly influenced by Swami Vivekananda's teachings and was known for his patriotic zeal as a student. To fulfill his parents wishes he went to England in 1919 to compete for Indian Civil Services. In England he appeared for the Indian Civil Service competitive examination in 1920, and came out fourth in order of merit. However, Subhas Chandra Bose was deeply disturbed by the Jallianwalla Bagh massacre, and left his Civil Services apprenticeship midway to return to India in 1921

After returning to India Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose came under the influence of Mahatma Gandhi and joined the Indian National Congress. On Gandhiji's instructions, he started working under Deshbandhu Chittaranjan Das, whom he later acknowledged his political guru. Soon he showed his leadership mettle and gained his way up in the Congress' hierarchy. In 1928 the Motilal Nehru Committee appointed by the Congress declared in favour of Domination Status, but Subhas Chandra Bose along with Jawaharlal Nehru opposed it, and both asserted that they would be satisfied with nothing short of complete independence for India. Subhas also announced the formation of the Independence League. Subhas Chandra Bose was jailed during Civil Disobedience movement in 1930. He was released in 1931 after Gandhi-Irwin pact was signed. He protested against the Gandhi-Irwin pact and opposed the suspension of Civil Disobedience movement specially when Bhagat Singh and his associates were hanged.

Subash Chandra Bose was soon arrested again under the infamous Bengal Regulation. After a year he was released on medical grounds and was banished from India to Europe. He took steps to establish centres in different European capitals with a view to promoting politico-cultural contacts between India and Europe. Defying the ban on his entry to India, Subash Chandra Bose returned to India and was again arrested and jailed for a year. After the General Elections of 1937, Congress came to power in seven states and Subash Chandra Bose was released. Shortly afterwards he was elected President of the Haripura Congress Session in 1938. During his term as Congress President, he talked of planning in concrete terms, and set up a National planning Committee in October that year. At the end of his first term, the presidential election to the Tripuri Congress session took place early 1939. Subhas Chandra Bose was re-elected, defeating Dr. Pattabhi Sitaramayya who had been backed by Mahatma Gandhi and the Congress Working Committee. Clouds of World War II were on the horizon and he brought a resolution to give the British six months to hand India over to the Indians, failing which there would be a revolt. There was much opposition to his rigid stand, and he resigned from the post of president and formed a progressive group known as the Forward Block.

Subhas Chandra Bose now started a mass movement against utilizing Indian resources and men for the great war. There was a tremendous response to his call and he was put under house arrest in Calcutta. In January 1941, Subhas Chandra Bose disappeared from his home in Calcutta and reached Germany via Afghanistan. Working on the maxim that "an enemy's enemy is a friend", he sought cooperation of Germany and Japan against British Empire. In January 1942, he began his regular broadcasts from Radio Berlin, which aroused tremendous enthusiasm in India. In July 1943, he arrived in Singapore from Germany. In Singapore he took over the reins of the Indian Independence Movement in East Asia from Rash Behari Bose and organised the Azad Hind Fauj (Indian National Army) comprising mainly of Indian prisoners of war. He was hailed as Netaji by the Army as well as by the Indian civilian population in East Asia. Azad Hind Fauj proceeded towards India to liberate it from British rule. Enroute it lliberated Andeman and Nicobar Islands. The I.N.A. Head quarters was shifted to Rangoon in January 1944. Azad Hind Fauj crossed the Burma Border, and stood on Indian soil on March 18 ,1944.

However, defeat of Japan and Germany in the Second World War forced INA to retreat and it could not achieve its objective. Subhas Chandra Bose was reportedly killed in an air crash over Taipeh, Taiwan (Formosa) on August 18, 1945. Though it is widely believed that he was still alive after the air crash not much information could be found about him. Bose as a student in England. Circa 1920.

Subhas Chandra Bose was born on 23 January 1897 in Cuttack, then a part of Bengal Presidency, to Janakinath Bose, an advocate and Prabhavati Devi. His parents' ancestral house was at Kodalia village (near Baruipur; now known as Shubhashgram, South 24 Parganas, West Bengal). He was the ninth child of a total of fourteen siblings. He studied at Stewart School, Cuttack, an Anglo school, until the seventh standard and then shifted to Ravenshaw Collegiate School. After securing the second position in the matriculation examination of Calcutta province in 1911, he got admitted to the Presidency College where he studied briefly. His nationalistic temperament came to light when he was expelled for assaulting Professor Oaten for the latter's anti-India comments. He later joined Scottish Church College under University of Calcutta and passed his B.A. in 1918 in philosophy. Subhas Chandra Bose left India in 1919 for Great Britain with a promise to his father that he would appear in the Indian Civil Services Examination (ICS). He went to study in Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge, and matriculated on 19 November 1919. He came fourth in the ICS examination and was selected but he did not want to work under an alien government which would mean serving the British. He resigned from the civil service job and returned to India. He started the newspaper Swaraj and took charge of publicity for the Bengal Provincial Congress Committee. His mentor was Chittaranjan Das who was a spokesman for aggressive nationalism in Bengal. In the year 1923, Bose was elected the President of All India Youth Congress and also the Secretary of Bengal State Congress. He was also editor of the newspaper "Forward", founded by Chittaranjan Das. Bose worked as the CEO of the Calcutta Municipal Corporation for Das when the latter was elected mayor of Calcutta in 1924. In a roundup of nationalists in 1925, Bose was arrested and sent to prison in Mandalay, where he contracted tuberculosis.

SUKHDEV THAPAR

: SUKHDEV THAPAR

:15.5.1907

: SUKHDEV

PHOTO:

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Sukhdev Thapar, an Indian revolutionary, was born on 15 May, 1907 in the Chaura Bazar area called Nau Ghara (nine houses), Ludhiana. The name of his father was Sh. Ram Lal & Mother was Smt. Ralli Devi. Sukhdev was organiser of revolutionary party in Punjab. That is why the consipiracy case constituted by British Colonial Government was waging war against King George and it was crown verses Sukhdev. It was for this reason that he was sentenced to death by a special tribunal the proceedings of which were bycotted by the accused persons because of biased and colonial attitude of the judges. He is best known as an accomplice of Bhagat Singh and Shivaram Rajguru in the killing of a British police officer in 1928 in order to take revenge for the death of veteran leader Lala Lajpat Rai due to excessive police beating. All three were hanged in Lahore Central Jail on March 23, 1931 in the evening at 7.33 pm against all norms of hanging. The dead bodies were secretly taken away by breaking the back walls of jail and were seceretly burnt on the banks of River Satluj near Firozepur about 50 miles away from Lahore. The bodies were cut into pieces to make the burial quick.

Sukhdev was an active member of the Hindustan Socialist Republican Association, being one of the seniormost leaders. He is known to have started study circles at National College (Lahore) in order to delve into India's past as well as to scrutinize the finer aspects of the world revolutionary literature and Russian Revolution. He along with Bhagat Singh, Comrade Ram Chandra and Bhagwati Charan Vohra started Naujawan Bharat Sabha at Lahore. The main aims of this organisation were to activate youth for freedom struggle, inculcate a rational scientific attitude, fight communalism and end the practice of untouchability. Sukhdev also participated in the 1929 Prison hunger strike to protest against the inhuman treatment meted out to the inmates.

His letter to Mahatma Gandhi written just prior to his hanging, protesting against the latter's disapproval of revolutionary tactics, throws light on the disparities between the two major schools of thought among Indian freedom fighers. However, Hansraj Vohra - the man who gave the clinching testimony that resulted in the hanging of the trio, claimed that Sukhdev had himself turned an approver. Nevertheless, this relatively baseless contention does not detract from the tremendous courage, patriotism and self-sacrifice that Sukhdev Thapar embodifies, as is evident in the recent naming of a school after him in Ludhiana.

The ancestral house of Sukhdev, where he was born & brought up, still stands here at Nau Ghara in Chaura Bazar as dilapidated structure. Few years back, the Thapars had set up a trust named Shaheed Sukhdev Thapar Memorial Trust (SSTMT) to look after the historical place and to create awareness among people about the great martyr by setting a memorial at his birthplace.

Quotes

  • "Give me blood and I will give you (new) freedom!" - Subhas Chandra Bose
  • “All powers are within you, you can do anything and every thing” - Swami Vivekananda
  • “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win” - Mahatma Gandhi
  • “In India we only read about death, sickness, terrorism, crime” - A. P. J. Abdul Kalam