Gather information about the important leaders of Indian freedom movement and their biographies and read aloud.
Independent India is the contribution of thousands and thousands of nameless freedom fighters and famous Indians like Gandhiji, Nehru, Patel etc.
1) MAHATMA GANDHI
|LIFE PERIOD||2 October 1869-30 January 1948|
|PLACE OF BIRTH||Porbandar , Gujarat|
• Mahatma Gandhi’s father, Karamchand Gandhi, was as a chief minister in Porbandar and other states in western India. His mother, Putlibai, was a totally religious woman who fasted regularly.
• At the age of 13, Mahatma Gandhi wed Kasturba Makanji, a merchant’s daughter, in an arranged marriage.
• Mahatma Gandhi was the primary leader of India’s independence movement.
• He was the leader of India’s non-violent independence movement against British rule.
• Gandhi studied law and organized boycotts against British institutions in peaceful forms of civil disobedience.
• Gandhi grew up worshiping the Hindu god Vishnu. He also followed Jainism. He believed in non-violence, fasting, meditation, and vegetarianism.
• “The religious spirit within me became a living force,” he wrote about religion.
• In 1915 Gandhi founded an ashram in Ahmedabad, India, that was open to all castes.
• He was called ‘Mahatma’ or the ‘great saint’.
• In 1888, 18-year-old Gandhi went to London, England, to study law.
• in 1906, Gandhi organized his first mass civil-disobedience campaign, which he called “Satyagraha” (“truth and firmness”).
• After years of protests, the government imprisoned hundreds of Indians in 1913, including Gandhi.
• In 1930, Gandhi returned to active politics to protest Britain’s Salt Acts. It is called as salt satyagraha
• Violence between Hindus and Muslims flared after independence and made bad effect on August 15, 1947. The religious hatred increased.
• Gandhiji was assassinated by Hindutva Terrorist Nathuram Godse.
2) JAWAHARLAL NEHRU
|LIFE PERIOD||14 November 1889-27 May 1964|
|PLACE OF BIRTH||Allabhad|
• Motilal Nehru (1861–1931), a wealthy barrister who belonged to the Kashmiri Pandit community was Nehru’s father. He served twice as President of the Indian National Congress. His mother, Swaruprani Thussu (1868–1938), belonged to a well-known Kashmiri Brahmin family, settled in Lahore.
• He did education in England and later studied law at Trinity College, Cambridge.
• On returning to India in 1912, he practiced law and got married to Kamala Kaul. They had one daughter – Indira Gandhi.
• Nehru joined the Indian National Congress in 1919
• By 1927, Nehru became an influential voice in advocating the call for complete independence from the British Empire.
• During the 1920s and 1930s, he actively participated in the civil disobedience campaigns and was jailed on several occasions.
• In 1942, Nehru followed Gandhi’s ‘Quit India Movement’.
• On the independence day, that is on August 15th, 1947, Nehru became India’s first Prime Minister.
• On the eve of India’s independence, Nehru gave a speech to Congress and the nation – known as “Tryst with Destiny”
• Nehru died in 1964.
3) B. R. AMBEDKAR
|LIFE PERIOD||14 April 1891-6 December 1956|
|PLACE OF BIRTH||Mhow , Madhya Pradesh|
• Ambedkar was born in a poverty-stricken family in Madhya Pradesh. He was the 14th child of Ramji Sakpal who was a Subedar (officer) in the British Indian Army.
• His family was ranked as a Mahar (Dalit) ‘untouchable’ caste.
• In 1897, he became the only ‘untouchable’ to be enrolled in Bombay high school.
• In 1907, he became the first ‘untouchable’ to enter an affiliated college of the University of Bombay.
• In 1906, he was arranged to be married to a nine-year-old girl, Ramabai.
• He is called as “Babasaheb”
• He specialized in law, economics and political science, and made contributions to Indian economic thought.
• In 1918, he became Professor of Political Economy at the Sydenham College in Bombay. He also went on to serve as a lawyer
• He was appointed Chairman of the Constitution Drafting Committee. He was also appointed first Law Minister.
• Ambedkar prepared a constitution which sheltered a wide range of civil liberties for both the poor and women.
• His making of the Indian constitution placed a large emphasis on equal rights and the overcoming of discrimination.
• he was critical of the caste aspect of Hinduism and frequently talked about his desire to leave his religion
3) BHAGAT SINGH
|LIFE PERIOD||1907 - 1931|
|PLACE OF BIRTH||Banga , Punjab|
|MAIN CONTRIBUTIONS||Books : Why I am An Atheist : An Autobiographical Discourse , The Jail Notebook And Other Writings , Ideas of a Nation|
• His family was politically active
• He was an atheist and socialist in life.
• He said, “My life has been dedicated to the noblest cause, that of the freedom of the country. Therefore, there is no rest or worldly desire that can lure me now.”
• Born a Sikh he became influenced by Marxist and Anarchist philosophies and was dedicated to the attainment of independence for India, through violence if necessary.
• From a very young age, nationalism had taken its seed in Bhagat Singh’s ethics.
• He grew up to value nationalism and desire a British-free independent India.
• Singh was a leader of the Hindustan Socialist Republican Association (HSRA).
• He was executed in 1931 for his part in killing a British officer.
4) BAL GANGADHAR TILAK
|LIFE PERIOD||23 July 1856-1 August 1920|
|PLACE OF BIRTH||Ratnagiri , Maharashtra|
• He was one of the prime architects of modern India and the strongest advocates of Swaraj or Self Rule for India.
• His famous declaration is “Swaraj is my birth right, and I shall have it”
• He belonged to a middle-class Chitpavan Brahmin family in Ratnagiri, a small coastal town in south-western Maharashtra.
• He received his law degree in 1879.
• As one among India's first generation of youths who received a modern, college education, Tilak strongly criticized the educational system followed by the British in India.
• Tilak founded two newspapers ‘Kesari’ in Marathi and ‘Mahratta’ in English.
• Gangadhar Tilak joined the Indian National Congress in 1890.
• Because of the fundamental difference in outlook, Tilak and his supporters came to be known as the extremist wing of Indian National Congress Party.
• During 1908-1914, Bal Gangadhar Tilak spent had to undergo six years of painstaking imprisonment in Mandalay Jail, Burma.
• Tilak founded the All India Home Rule League in 1916
• Tilak was so disappointed by the brutal incident of Jalianwala Bagh massacre that his health started diminishing.
• In mid-July 1920, his condition worsened and on August 1, he passed away.
These are the biographic information about a few prominent leaders who fought for our independence.