Vinayak Damodar Savarkar

Veer Savarkar was a prominent leader of Indian freedom struggle and was a great revolutionary. He was born on May 28, 1883 in Bhagur near Nasik and his actual name was Vinayak Damodar Savarkar. He received his primary education from Shivaji School in Nasik. He was a rebel since his childhood and at the age of 11, he organized a group of children known as Vanersena. He lost his mother at the age of 9. Veer Savarkar was inspired by the ideologies of Tilak and he regarded him as his Guru. During his school days, he organized Ganesh Utsav and Shivaji Utsav, which was began by Tilak and during these utsavs, he staged plays with nationalist themes. He even organized Mitra Mela when he was young and in this mela, he invited several enthusiastic youth and motivated them to join the freedom movement. He encouraged the youth to strive for complete freedom of the country by whatever means possible. He was capable of motivating the youth and they engaged themselves in physical training for the movement. In 1899, there was an outbreak of plague in the country and the youth of this organization severed a lot during this time but unfortunately, Savarkar lost his father in the epidemic.

In the year 1901, he got married and in 1902, he joined the Fergusson College in Pune. His actual involvement in Indian revolutionary movement started since then. During his college days, he got involved in several revolutionary activities and was capable of motivating his comrades to participate in the freedom struggle of India. He was capable of forming a group with the students of dressing in the similar way. In 1904, he then formed the Abhinav Bharat with the same ideology as the Mitra Mela and in 1905; he initiated the first public bonfire of foreign clothes in Pune. He actively participated in the Swadeshi Movement initiated by Tilak and soon joined the Swaraj Party formed by Tilak. In successfully completed his graduation in the year 1905 but due to his instigating speeches and activities against British rule made them angry and as a result, the British Government withdrew his degree.

savarkarIn the year 1906, he left for London to become a lawyer and even in London; he gathered Indian students and instigated them against the British rule. There he founded the Free India society and this society celebrated important Indian festivals and freedom movement landmarks. The society carried out discussions about the freedom of India and Savarkar believed and supported that India can gain freedom only with arm revolution and as a result, he formed a group of Indians in England and equipped them with arms. In 1908, he published a book name “The Indian War of Independence 1857”, which was a reliable research work of the “Sepoy Mutiny” of 1857. This book created a lot of havoc in both Britain and India and this made the British Govt. to put a ban on the publication of the book in England and India. However, Madame Bhikaiji Cama published it in Holland and was smuggled to India to reach the Indian revolutionaries.

In the year 1909, when Madanlal Dhingra, a dedicated follower of Veer Savarkar shot Sir Wyllie after a failed attempt to kill Viceroy, Lord Curzor but he did not clearly defy the act. Later, a youth assassinated the then British Collector of Nasik, A.M.T. Jackson and Veer Savarkar feel into the trap of British and he was caught up for alluding to the murder and on March 13, 1910 he was arrested in London and was sent back to India. He was accused of provocative speeches, transportation of illegal weapons and sedation. He was sentenced to imprisonment of 50 years and was sent to Kalapani at Andaman Cellular Jail. However, in the year 1920, owing to the demand of his release by prominent leaders namely Vithalbhai Patel, Mahatma Gandhi and Bal Gangadhar Tilak, he was transferred to Ratnagir Jail in 1921. During his imprisonment in the Ratnagiri Jail, he wrote the book “Hindutva” and finally on 6th January, 1924, he was released under the condition that he will not leave the Ratnagiri district and will abstain from political and revolutionary activities. After his release, on 23rd January 1924, the Ratnagiri Hindu Sabha was founded with the objective to conserve the ancient Indian culture and work towards the uphliftment of the society. Later, he again joined the Swaraj Party and got involved in the freedom struggle. He formed a separate party with the name of Hindu Mahasabha and became the President of the party. The party worked for building a Hindu Nationalism. The party was totally against the partition of India and forming a separate nation, named Pakistan. He also actively took part in the Quit India Movement.

On 31st January, 1948, a worker of Hindu Mahasabha, Nathuram Godsey assassinated Mahatma Gandhi and Savarkar was arrested along with Nathuram Godsey and the Government impeached his involvement in the act of assassination of Ghandhi. However, the Supreme Court of India released him owing to lack of evidence and Godsey was give death sentence. On 26th February, 1966, Savarkar left for his heavenly abode.Veer Savarkar was a great patriot who selflessly carried out his endeavor to free India from British rule. He was a great hero and a leader, who was capable of motivating people to join the freedom movement. His contribution towards India’s Independence is worth of appreciation and his dedication and loyalty towards the nation deserves to be respected and recognized.

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