[Note: Its Bhagat Singh’s Birthday today and This post is a tribute to him and his friends who lived and died for the nation. I have tried to keep the dates accurate but could not do so. For reference in this article, the months which do not have exact dates are not accurate. Surprisingly i could not find the chronology of Bhagat Singh or any of his friends, neither on the internet nor in the libraries. Its sad to see the lack of information on people who sacrificed everything for our country. I have tried to see world through his eyes and the result is here. It is far from perfect and farther from what i wanted it to be but please forgive me as this is all i could do.]
27 Sept. 1920:
I have turned 13 today. I think i can understand more now. Last year on 13th April, that monster called Reginald Dyer, ordered people to be shot at Jalianwala Bagh. I wish i could grow up fast and avenge my people! So many died. How could any human do anything like that? Gandhijee has called for non-cooperation movement. Now the Britishers will soon go back. No no.. They will be sent back by us. Gandhi jee ki Jai, Jai Hind!
5th February 1922:
How could Gandhiji call off the non-cooperation movement? Chauri-Chaura was perfectly justified. How can we ask anybody to not respond in the same currency after being beaten? When the Police beats and fires on innocent people, they do not show any humanity. Why should we? Even ‘Geeta’ says one should stand and fight injustice. Grandma says even Guru Gobind singh ji stood up and fought the invaders to save our nation, why should we not do that? I am confused. I am angry. I want to cry. I want freedom.
Joined National college, Lahore. If Lala Lajpat Rai had not started National college, students like me would have been devastated. We left our old DAV college on Gandhiji’s call for non cooperation movement and then were left for nothing after the movement was called off. I know i have to study. Not because i want to earn more, but because i want to open my mind. I need to know what is going on in the world, without which our country will not progress.
I love this college. Just discussed about Italian patriot Mazzini and political figure Garibaldi. There views were impressive. Learnt a lot about Russian revolution too. Will have to read more about Marx! Socialism looks like a good option to end our nations miseries.
Joined Dramatics society too. It seems to be a very easy medium to communicate with poor audience and make them understand the importance of various things. They cannot read or write. Colleges and schools remain the indulgence of rich after the indigenous system of education has been destroyed by the Brits. Every thing i start thinking ends up on the British. I need to do something. Either forget about it as an mental instability or fight them till they really go out. Ha ha ha… what am i thinking. Even i know what i will do!
Something important is in store for me in future. This year has been so important. Met many like minded friends. B.K Dutt, Jaidev, Sukhdev, Shiv, Ajay Ghosh and teachers like Vidyalankar jee.
Bapuji wants me to marry. I have decided not to. Both my uncles Sardar Ajit singh and Swaran Singh died in armed struggle against the British. I do not wish to leave a grieving widow behind. Life is too tough for them. I will leave home but would not marry. Nobody should suffer till eternity because of me.
Reached Kanpur. Wonder why the Brits call it ‘Cawnpore’! I am carrying Vidyalankar Jee’s letter of introduction. Joining HRA had been a dream since i heard about them. ‘Hindustan Republican Association’, founded by Sachindranath Sanyal, looks like a party which believes in direct action. Met the likes of Chandra Shekhar ‘Azad’ and Ram Prasad Bismil. What was i doing all these days! Living here has made me believe more and more in the concept of armed rebellion against the imperialists. There is no other way out.
Recruitment is going smoothly. In every village we visit, we find people who are angry and want to avenge the deaths of their liked ones.
Attacked the police again when they tried to stop us from distributing pamphlets. Police interference has been on a steady rise. Have decided to go back to Lahore for a few days.
‘Naujawan Bharat Sabha’ is now up and running smoothly. Our fiery speeches and bold statements have made us a favourite amongst masses and even the leaders are now recognizing our potent
ial. There have been some instances where they have wanted to plant somebody in the ‘Sabha’ to know more about us. Plays and helping flood victims is few of the things Sabha does and will keep on doing. We believe in humanity and unity. Our motto bears 3 letters, ‘SSS’. ‘Service’, ‘Sacrifice’ and ‘Suffereing’.
9th August 1925:
Comrades Bismil, Azad, Sachindra Bakshi, Rajendra Lahiri, Manmathnath Gupta, Mukundi Lal and Ashfaqullah Khan executed Kakori Train robbery today. Proud moment for HRA. From today onwards we use our own money which was looted by Britishers for liberating our nation.
15th March 1926:
My article written on ‘Babbar Akali movement’ has been published in ‘Pratap’ where i have tried to justify the movement’s aim of liberating our lands from Brtish and the Gurudwaras from corrupt Mahants through an armed intervention.
The accused in The Kakori Kand were sentenced today. They risked there lives and people in mainstream parties mock them. Penned an article, “Kaakori ke Veeron se parichay’. Added a couple of lines for people who do nothing but to watch.
‘We sigh and think we have done our duty. We do not have that fire, we do not suffer, for we have become corpses. Today they are sitting on a Hunger-Strike and suffering and we are silently watching the show. May God grant them the strength and courage they need in their last few days’.
29th May 1927:
Today i was arrested for the first time on charges of sedition and bomb blasts. The real reason why they arrested me is that they are afraid of my articles published in ‘Kirti’ and ‘Pratap’. They doubt me of being involved in ‘Kakori conspiracy’ too. I am ready! Lets see who breaks first! I chose the pseudo pen-name ‘Vidrohi’, not for nothing! Will write about ‘Anarchism’ now.
People call us terrorists. Please do not equate violence with crime for when patriots take up arms for the sake of their country and its safety, when they eliminate exploitation and oppression or when they avenge the injustice done to the oppressed and go to the gallows, they use violence but they do not spread terror’. The distinction between crime and terrorism, although both use violence, is based on the intention of those who use it. The ideals of ‘bravery, courage, martyrdom, the ability to use weapons, generosity, duty etc., dependent on the application of force are now considered base and unqualified’.
HRA is now HSRA (Hindustan Socialist republican association) and we believe in socialism as our ideal from now on. Bengali revolutionaries led by Phanindra Nath Ghosh have also joined us in this common cause of liberty.
17th November 1928:
Lalaji passed away today after being brutally assaulted by a young British officer…in front of our eyes and we could not do anything…!!! His sacrifice will not go unnoticed. Come what may, We will take our revenge! Scott will have to die!
17th December 1928:
Made a terrible mistake today. Killed Saunders instead of Scott. It has created a massive furore. Will have to leave Lahore as soon as possible.
British government wants to make the ‘Defence of India Act’ tougher and grant more powers to Police. Farmers are already burdened and they are planning to add to that burden. Laborers will be crushed by the proposed “Trade Dispute bill”. This will mean disaster for the common people and our representatives in parliament will keep on passing papers and requesting the queen. We need to do something to make the Britishers hear our voice. I intend to throw bombs in the parliament. Will discuss this with comrades soon.
9th April 1929:
Batukeshwar Dutta and me are ready to throw bombs in the parliament when the bill is about to be passed. The bombs have been prepared in such a way that they wont harm anybody. No sharpnels, very little chemicals. Today the Britishers will be forced to hear our voice. Then we will give ourselves to the police just after throwing leaflets in the air for anybody who cares to read them.
6th June 1929:
Have been awarded transportation for life! Elated! The entire trial was a mockery but it gave us a platform to voice our opinion. We are no more ‘irresponsible terrorists’ in the eyes of people, as we were often projected. We are as much responsible in our activities as mainstream leaders are. ‘INQUILAB ZINDABAD’! Longlive revolution, down with Imperialism!
2nd July 1929:
We have started an indefinite hunger strike jail for clean food and our basic human rights. Lets see who wins this battle!
10th July 1929:
The trial for ‘Lahore Conspiracy case’ has started. The government itself will give us the platform we needed the most. None of us will offer any defence but use this dais to spread our views. The message of ‘Inquilab’ is reaching the youth. Just waiting for the day when entire India stands up against these invaders, what a sight would it be.
All of us have been shifted to one jail! The atmosphere is full of fun again. Sad part is, these guys have started fasting too. I did not want them to but who can stop a revolutionary. And that too the revolutionaries are people like Sukhdev, Rajguru, Jatin da!!
They can’t beat us up to do what they want. Our bodies get stronger with every stick we face. Every now and then they try to make us eat, but a revolutionary fighting for his nation is gifted with extraordinary willpower. That day we again were beaten up on ice slabs. The shouts of ‘Inquilab Zindabad’ and ‘Vande Matram’ keep us going. At the time when the body is freezing, these slogans and songs fill us with anger and remind us why we are fighting.
13th September 1929:
Britishers succumb to our demand after 63 days of Hunger strike. We lost Jatin da today. I don’t know if we won or lost… He was the finest son of Mother India.
The court room has become our propaganda office! Rather than offering defence, we are using it to spread our thoughts and newspapers say our thoughts are spreading like wildfire. We do not need ‘Dominion Status‘ as Congress demands. This is our nation and ‘Total Independence’ is our birth right. We will take it by force! Nobody can stop us from being free. What have we achieved with these philosophies of ‘Non-violence’ and ‘love’? Jalianwala Bagh massacre and growing rift between Hindus and Muslims? To hell with imperialism.
30th January 1930:
Congress declared the war-cry for ‘Total Independence’ today. At least now they know what the common public of India wants!
Viceroy has passed an ordnance according to which courtrooms don’t need our presence in them anymore. They can now operate even without the accused so that whatever sentences they have predetermined can be implemented on us. How low can British Govt. stoop. Shame!
Bijoy Kumar Sinha, Gaya Prasad, Kishori lal, Mahabir Singh, Shiv verma, Jaidev, Kamal Nath Tiwary have been awarded Trasportation for life. Rajguru, Sukhdev and me have been sentenced to death. The atmosphere is celebratory as this is what we always wanted. This was inevitable and not something we never visualised! Three of us have been shifted to the condemned cells today.
27th February 1930:
Panditjee sacrificed his life today for the nation. One more revolutionary has passed away but not before enlightening thousands of hearts with passion for freedom. He justified his name and kept his promise. ‘Azad‘ he always was and ‘Azad’ he always would be…!
23rd March 1930:
There seems to be a change in atmosphere today at the jail. Looks like we will be hanged before the schedule! God! How could you let these cowards rule over us! Our sacrifice will not be wasted. As long as there will be sun, moon or starts in the sky, people of BHARAT will take inspiration from us and fight injustice. We will always live in there hearts and souls. VANDE MATRAM!
27th September 2010:
Our nation needs us again…. Maa…we are coming….