Shaheed Bhagat Singh

Bhagat Singh was among the important revolutionaries who have laid the stones of Indian freedom movement against the British Rule. He was born to a Sikh Jat family on 27 September 1907 at Banga in Lyallpur district (now Pakistan) to Kishan Singh and Vidya Vati. His uncle, Sardar Ajit Singh as well his father were great freedom fighter and founded the Indian Patriots’ Association and belonging to a family of patriots, it patriotism ran in his blood and also grew up in such an environment.

The thought of being enslaved by the British troubled him a lot but as he was a child he could not actively participate in the freedom movement. However, the Ghadar Movement left a deep dent on his mind and Kartar Sing Sarabha, who was hanged at the age of 19, became his idol. The Jallianwala Bagh Massacre  on April 13, 1919 made him to go to Amritsar, where he kissed the earth purified by the blood of the martyrs and he also brought back home a little of the soaked soil. He actively participated in the non-cooperation movement of India started by Mahatma Gandhi when he was just 13 years old. He explicitly disobeyed the British ant burned all the Government funded books. He became forlorn when Mahatma Gandhi withdrew the Non-Cooperation movement because of the violent episode of the “Chauri Chaura” and decided to join the Young Revolutionary Movement. After completing his primary education, he was admitted to the DAV College and there he was influenced by two Nationalist, Bhai Parmanand and Jai Chand Vidyalankar and they managed to leave their mark on his mind. From here he started his actual journey of becoming a revolutionary and gave a new direction to the revolutionary movement in India. According to him, armed revolution was the only way to win freedom from the British rule and discarded non-violence.

In 1923, an essay competition held by the Punjab Hindi Sahitya Sammelan, which was won by Bhagat Singh won and he managed to grab the notice of the members of the Sammelan. During this young age, he extracted famous Punjabi literature and discussed the issues related to Punjab. After that he went to National College at Lahore and there he came in touch with several revolutionaries namley Bhagwati Charan, Sukhdev and many more. However, he ran away from home to get away with early marriage and went to Kanpur. There he came in contact with Ganesh Shankar Vidyarthi where he learnt his first lessons of actual revolution. However, he had to return back due to some family problem and he continued his revolutionary activities from his village. He went to Lahore and formed a revolutionary group by name ‘Naujavan Bharat Sabha’ and started thinning out the message of revolution in Punjab.

Saheed Bhagat Singh dedicated his life for the freedom of India and joined Akalis and Babbar Akalis and he then joined the Hindustan Socialist Republican Association at the request of Professor Vidyalankar in the same year. He was elected as the general secretary of the central committee of the association and was delegated with the task of coordinating the inter-provincial activities of the Association. In the year 1926, he along with Kundan Lal and Chandra Sekhar Azad, planned to release the prisoners of the Kakori incident but unfortunately, it failed. Nevertheless, they did not keep silent and on the day of Dusherra, they exploded a bomb in Lahore and Bhagat Singh was then after arrested and prosecuted but due to lack of proper evidence of the bomb blast, he was discharged of the charges.

In September 1928, a meeting of different revolutionaries from all over India was called at Delhi under the banner of the Kirti Kissan Party and Bhagat Singh was the secretary of the meet. The capture and hanging of the main HRA Leaders, Ram Prasad Bismil, Ashfaquallah Khan and others made him the leader of party, along with his fellow revolutionary Sukhdev. In the same year, he, along with Chandra Sekhar Azad, formed the ‘Hindustan Samajvadi Prajatantra Sangha’, which was aimed to establish republic in India with arm revolution. In the same year, the Simon Commission visited India under Sir John Simon to report on the existing political condition in India and since there was not a single Indian in the committee, the people of the nation decided to boycott Simon Commission. The Congress decided to take out a black flag demonstration as a protest and a huge parade of protestors, led by Lala Lajpat Rai with black flag greeted the commission. This led to a despicable offense and lathicharge took place, where even Lala Lajpat Rai was not considered and after suffering from serious injury, he soon surrendered to death. This again created a huge havoc among all the revolutionaries.

Bhagat Singh along with Rajguru and Azad, decided to kill Mr. Scott, who was believed to be responsible for the whole episode, which led to the death of Lala Lajpat Rai. On 17 December 1928 while attempting to kill Scott, they shot at Saunders, a Deputy Superintendent of Police and he was killed. Bhagat Singh ran away from Lahore and went to Calcutta to escape from being caught by the police. He also saved his beard and cut his hair, which was a sin for a Sikh. Along with B.K. Dutt, he opened a new branch of their association in Calcutta. In the mean time, the British government enacted the Defence of India Act to give more power to the police with the objective to fight revolutionaries like Bhagat Singh. The Act was defeated in the council by one vote but the Act was then passed under the ordinance that asserted that it was in the best interest of the public. As an objection against this act, the Hindustan Socialist Republican Association decided to blast a bomb in the Central Legislative Assembly where the law was going to be passed. It was made certain that Bhagat Singh and B.K. Dutt, his close associate, would throw the bomb in the assembly. The association entrusted them with the task of bombing in the Central Legislative Assembly in Delhi and on April 8, 1929, to give result to the task entrusted upon them, they bombed the Legislative Assembly while in session. Bhagat Singh and B.K.Dutt surrendered before the police soon after bombing and constantly shouted Inquilab Zindabad and Long Live Revolution. They were then tried and were summoned to be hanged till death. Bhagat Singh along with his other friends wrote letters to the Viceroy to treat them as Prisoners of War hence to put them to death by firing and not by hanging. Prannath Mehta, a friend of Bhagat Singh, visited him in the jail on March 20, four, with a draft letter for mercy, but he refused to sign it. On 23 March 1931 at about 7.30 in the evening, Bhagat Singh,Sukhdev Thapar and Siv Ram Rajguru were hanged in the Central Jail of Lahore.

Bhagat Singh was a true Nationalist and proved it by sacrificing his life for the motherland. He was an inspiration for the Indian Youth and his contribution towards India’s Freedom Movement is incomparable. He is a legend in the true sense and as Indians, we should respect him and follow his ideologies and learn to love and sacrifice for our nation. We should all salute this legend for his contribution and sacrifice because without his selfless contribution we would not have won freedom from the British Rule.

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