As india celebrates its Independence day,lets remember the great Patriots who laid down their lives for our Independence
Tatia Tope: Tatia Tope was a hero of the fight for freedom in 1857. His very name made the mighty English Generals tremble. Deceived by his friend, he faced death like a hero, for the sake of his country. He was the Supreme commander in the War of Indian Independence, which in 1857, had challenged the hold of the British over India. It was he who, more than anybody else, shook the mighty British Empire to its foundations. Holding aloft the flag of freedom, he sought to break the chains of slavery and fought the military might of the English heroically. His name had become a household word for bravery.
Jhansi Lakshmi Bai: Lakshmi Bai was the great heroine of the First war of India Freedom. She lived for only 22 years. She became a widow in her eighteenth year. Jhansi, of which she was the queen, was in the grip of the cunning, cruel British. She was the embodiment of patriotism, self-respect and heroism. She was the queen of a small state, but the empress of a limitless empire of glory. She led her troops to battle against the British in the Revolt of 1857. She was one of the first women martyrs of the country.
Bal Gangadhar Tilak: Bal Gangadhar Tilak was a great Sanskrit scholar and astronomer. He fixed the origin and date of Rigvedic Aryans, which was highly acclaimed and universally accepted by Orientalists of his time. His role in Congress and advocating Home Rule for India were enormous. His newspaper (Kesari) founded in 1881 is going strong even today. He was Guru to V.D. Savarkar and hundreds of nationalists and thousands of Indians. He led the Indian Freedom Movement, till 1920, his death. After him Gandhiji took over. Although Gandhi accepted Gokhale as his mentor, in practice, he adopted all of Tilak's ideas of Swadeshi and of social reform.
His words, "Swaraj is my birthright and I shall have it!" roused a sleeping nation to action, making Indian people aware of their political plight under a foreign rule. Tilak did not question the British Sovereignty nor his demands were rebellious or revolutionary. All he was asking was favorable conditions in India, to enable people to learn to govern themselves.
Surendranath Banerjee: Surendranath Banerjee was one of the early leaders in the history of the Indian freedom movement. He was a great leader and at the same time professor, newspaper editor and social reformer. Due to his refusal to accept defeat he was known as 'Surrender Not'. He served as the President of the Indian National Congress twice, in 1895 and 1902. He became the editor of a paper called "Bengalee" from 1878 and wrote fearlessly on patriotism, freedom, unity and culture
Bhagat Singh: Bhagat Singh was born in September 27, 1907 in the village Banga of Layalpur to Mata Vidyavati and Sardar Kishan Singh. Bhagat Singh grew up in a patriotic atmosphere as his father and uncle, were great freedom fighters and were put in jail many times by the British. Bhagat Singh, along with the help of Chandrashekhar Azad, formed the Hindustan Socialist Republican Army. The aim of this Indian revolutionary movement was defined as not only to make India independent, but also to create "a socialist India."
In February 1928, the Simon Commission visited India. The purpose of its visit was to decide how much freedom and responsibility could be given to the people of India. Indian freedom fighters started an agitation called "Simon go back". It was in this agitation that during a police lathicharge, Lala Lajpat Rai was hurt and died. To avenge the death of Lala Lajpat rai, Bhagat Singh and Rajguru shot and killed the British Officer who had hit Lala Lajpat Rai. Bhagat Singh became "Shaheed Bhagat Singh" or Martyr at the age of 24.
M.K.Gandhi: Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi became one of the most respected spiritual and political leaders of the 1900's. Gandhi helped free the Indian people from British rule through nonviolent resistance, and is honored by his people as the father of the Indian Nation. Gandhiji stayed in South Africa for 21 years working to secure rights for Indian people. He developed a method of direct social action based upon the principles of courage, non-violence and truth called ‘Satyagraha.’ He believed that the way people behave is more important than what they achieve. ‘Satyagraha’ promoted nonviolence and civil disobedience as the most appropriate methods for obtaining political and social goals. In 1915 Gandhi returned to India. Within 15 years he became the leader of the Indian nationalist movement. Using the tenets of ‘Satyagraha’ he led the campaign for Indian independence from the British rule.
Subhash Chandra Bose: Subhash Chandra Bose was the most visionary and fierce activist in the pre-independence era. Known as Netaji, he followed the path, which no one even could have thought of. Bose advocated complete freedom for India at the earliest. He was elected president of the Indian National Congress twice in 1937 and in 1939, the second time defeating Gandhiji's nominee. Later he resigned from the Congress and formed a progressive group known as the Forward Block. An unparalleled example of the declaration of Independent Indian government with a cabinet and its own army was seen in form of the Indian National Army under the leadership of Subhash Chandra Bose. It literally had a military attack on British India and had confronted them up to Imphal. With the help from Germany and active support from Japan, they shook the very foundation of the British Empire.
Vallabh Bhai Patel: Vallabh Bhai Patel, the iron-man of India, was born on 13th October, 1875, in a small village Karamsadh of Bombay region. The British government declared to confiscate all the lands of farmers. Patel forced the government to amend the rules. He brought together the farmers and encouraged them and hence got the title of 'Sardar' and thus became famous. 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 intially did not want to join India. There were a lot of problems connected with the reunion of the numerous states into India. Sardar Patel's untiring efforts towards the unity of the country brought success. Due to the achievement of this massive task, Sardar Patel got the title of 'Iron Man'.
Maulana Abul Kalam Azad: Independent India's first Education Minister. He was given the chrono-grammatic name of Firoz Bakht (of exalted destiny) but commonly called Muhiyuddin Ahmad. He was imprisoned several times by the British. From 1920-1945, Abul Kalam Azad was in and out of prison a number of times. He was twice elected President of the Indian National Congress in 1923 and in 1940. He was the the youngest person to be elected the President of the Congress. He continued as President of the Congress till 1946 and when India became Independent. He started Urdu weekly, "Al-Hilal". The paper was amazingly forceful. It was a patriotic weekly. This antagonized the Britishers.
Jawaharlal Nehru: Jawaharlal Nehru was a leader of the socialist wing of the Indian National Congress during and after India's fight for independence from the British empire. He became the first Prime Minister of India when the country became a independent in 1947 and remained Prime Minister until his death in 1964. Nehru embodied a synthesis of ideals: politically an ardent nationalist, ideologically a pragmatic socialist, and secular in religious outlook, Nehru possessed a rare combination of intellect, breadth of vision, and personal charisma that attracted support throughout India. During the freedom struggle, he courted arrest many a times, and had been jailed 14 years in all. He was elected Congress President five times, and it was under his influence in Lahore, that the Congress adopted complete freedom as its goal.
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