Chandra Shekhar Azad – Hindu Warriors

azad

Chandra Shekhar Azad also spelt Chandrashekhar and Chandrasekhar.He was popularly known as Azad which means free. He was an Indian revolutionary. After the death of Ram Prasad Bismil who was the founder of Hindustan Republican Association . Chandra Shekar reorganized this association under the new name of Hindustan Socialist Republican Association (HSRA). He is considered to be HSRA’s chief strategist and Bhagat Singh’s mentor.

1.Early life
Azad was born on 23 July 1906 as Chandra Shekhar Tiwari in a Hindu Brahmin family in Bhavra village. His forefathers were from Badarka village near Kanpur. His mothers name was Jagrani Devi and father was Sitaram Tiwari. Jagrani Devi was the third wife of Sitaram Tiwari. His previous wives had died young. The family was shifted to Alirajpur after the birth of their first son Sukhdev.

Jagrani Devi wanted that her son become a great Sanskrit scholar so he insist his father to send him to Kashi Vidyapeeth, Banaras for study. When Chandra Shekhar was 15 year old student he joined the non – co operational movement that was launched by Mohan K. Gandhi.For this he got arrested. When was presented in front of magistrate, he gave his name as “Azad” (The Free), his father’s name as “Swatantrata” (Independent) and his residence as “Jail”. From that day he become famous among people as Chandra Shekhar Azad.

2.Revolutionary life
When the Ghandi’s movement was suspended in the year 1922, Azad became more aggressive. Azad committed himself that he have to achieve independence in any way. Some times later he met to Pranvesh Chatterji who was a young revolutionary. Pranvesh introduced him to the founder of Hindustan Republic association Ram Prasad Bismil. Azad was impressed by HRA aim i.e. an independent India with equal opportunity and rights to everyone without caste discrimination, creed, religion or social status. Azad impressed to Bismil while introduction, when Azad reportedly put his hand over a lamp and did not remove it till his skin burnt.Then he became active member of the HRA and started to collect funds for HRA. Most of the fund collection was through robberies of government property. He also wanted to build a new India based on socialist principles. Azad with his compatriots also planned and executed several acts of violence against the British. Most of his revolutionary activities were planned and executed from Shahjahanpur which was also Ram Prasad’s hometown. He was involved in the Kakori Train Robbery of 1925, in the attempt to blow up the Viceroy’s train in 1926, and at last the shooting of J.P. Saunders at Lahore in 1928 to avenge the killing of Lala Lajpat Rai.Despite being a member of Congress, Motilal Nehru regularly gave money in support of Azad.

3.Activities in Jhansi
Azad made Jhansi his organisation’s hub for some time. He used the forest of Orchha, situated 15 kilometres (9.3 mi) from Jhansi, as a site for shooting practice and, being an expert marksman, he trained other members of his group. Near the forest he built a hut near to a Hanuman Temple on the banks of the Satar River. He lived there under the alias of Pandit Harishankar Brahmachari for a long period, and started teaching children from the nearby village of Dhimarpura. In this way he managed to establish good rapport with the local residents. The village Dhimarpura was renamed as Azadpura by the Madhya Pradesh government.

While living in Jhansi, he also learned to drive a car at Bundelkhand Motor Garage in Sadar Bazar. Sadashivrao
Malkapurkar, Vishwanath Vaishampayan and Bhagwan Das Mahaur came in close contact with him and became an integral part of his revolutionary group. The then congress leaders from Raghunath Vinayak Dhulekar and Sitaram Bhaskar Bhagwat were also close to Azad. He also stayed for sometime in the house of Rudra Narayan Singh at Nai Basti, as well as Bhagwat’s house in Nagra.

4.With Bhagat Singh
The Hindustan Republican Association (HRA) was formed by Bismil, Chatterji, Sachindra Nath Sanyal and Shachindra Nath Bakshi in 1924. In the aftermath of the Kakori train robbery in 1925, the British clamped down on revolutionary activities. Prasad, Ashfaqulla Khan, Thakur Roshan Singh and Rajendra Nath Lahiri were sentenced to death for their participation. Azad, Keshab Chakravarthy and Murari Sharma evaded capture. Chandra Shekhar Azad later reorganized the HRA with the help of revolutionaries like Sheo Verma and Mahaveer Singh. Azad was also a close associate of Bhagwati Charan Vohra who along with Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev, and Rajguru, helped him to transform the HRA into the HSRA in 1928 so as to achieve their primary aim of an independent India based on socialist principle.

5.Death
The tree in Alfred Park, Allahabad, where Azad died.Azad died at Alfred Park in Allahabad on 27 February 1931. The police surround him in the park citing information from an informer. He was wounded in the process of defending himself and Sukhdev Raj and killed three policemen and wounded some others. His actions made it possible for Sukhdev Raj to escape. After a long shootout, holding true to his pledge to never be captured alive, he shot himself dead with his last bullet.The file related to Azad is preserved in C.I.D. Headquarters, 1, Gokhale Marg, Lucknow. The Colt pistol of Chandra Shekhar Azad is displayed at the Allahabad Museum.The body was sent to Rasulabad Ghat for cremation without informing general public. As it came to light, people surrounded the park where the incident had taken place. They chanted slogans against the British rule and praised Azad.

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