Chandra Shekhar Azad
TOPIC: General Studies 1
- Indian Freedom Movement
- Indian freedom fighters
In News: Chandra Shekhar Azad died on 27th February, 1931.
Chandrashekhar Azad was a great Indian freedom fighter. His fierce patriotism and courage inspired others of his generation to enter freedom struggle. He was the mentor of Bhagat Singh, another great freedom fighter, and along with Bhagat Singh he is considered as one of the greatest revolutionaries that India has produced.
As a revolutionary
‘Azad’: In December 1921, when Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi launched the Non-Cooperation Movement, Chandra Shekhar, then a 15-year-old student, joined. As a result, he was arrested. On being presented before a magistrate, he gave his name as “Azad” (The Free), his father’s name as “Swatantrata” (Independence) and his residence as “Jail”. From that day he came to be known as Chandra Shekhar Azad among the people.
Became famous for: Involved in the Kakori Train Robbery of 1925, in the attempt to blow up the Viceroy of India’s train in 1926, and at last the shooting of J. P. Saunders at Lahore in 1928 to avenge the killing of Lala Lajpat RaiThe Colt pistol of Chandra Shekhar Azad is displayed at the Prayagraj Museum
What inspired him: The Jallianwala Bagh tragedy which took place in 1919 was when he decided to join the Non-Cooperation movement led by Mahatma Gandhi in 1920.
Formed: He was the chief strategist of the Hindustan Socialist Republican Association (HSRA).
He inspired: Bhagat Singh
Chandrashekhar Azad was attracted towards more aggressive and revolutionary ideals. He committed himself to complete independence by any means. Azad and his compatriots would target British officials known for their oppressive actions against ordinary people and freedom fighters.
A terror for British police: He was on their hit list and the British police badly wanted to capture him dead or alive. On February 27, 1931 Azad met two of his comrades at the Alfred Park Allahabad. He was betrayed by an informer who had informed the British police. The police surrounded the park and ordered Azad to surrender. Azad fought alone valiantly and killed three policemen. But finding himself surrounded and seeing no route for escape, he shot himself. Thus he kept his pledge of not being caught alive.
Connecting the Dots:
- Azad lived only for 25 years, but inspired thousands of Indians to take part in freedom struggle!