Thursday, March 3, 2011

यह आन्दोलन:एक पुस्तक का चौथा प्रयास है. शहीदे-आज़म उधम सिंह के वंशज को एक नई जिन्दगी देना


जीत सिंह, जो शहीदे-आजम उधम सिंह के पौत्र है और एक गुमनामी जिन्दगी जी रहे है पंजाब के संगरूर जिला में, इस पुस्तक से हमारी कोशिश है कि वे एक नए जिन्दगी कि शुरुआत करें. यह पुस्तक अपने आप में अनूठा इसलिए है कि इसमें २५ ऐसे वंशजों कि खोज है जो आजादी के ६५ वर्ष होने पर भी गुमनामी जिन्दगी जी रहे है. आज से ९२ वर्ष पहले १३ अप्रील १९१९ को जल्लिंवाला बाग कांड हुआ था और उसके २० वर्ष बाद १३ मार्च १९४० को उधम सिंह ने डायेर को मारा था. 


Jeet Singh, grand son of Shaheed-e-Azam Udham Singh works as a
daily wage worker in Sangrur in Punjab
Jeet Singh's elder son with his wife
Jeet Singh's younger son
Shaheed-e-Azam Udham Singh
Michael O'Dwyer
Historical well inside Jallianwala Bagh where hundreds of innocent Indians
including men, women and children were killed on
Vashakhi day on April 13, 1919 
Just as the economic health of a nation is known by the state of its infrastructure and the level of the nation’s civility is known by its music, the health of a nation can be known by the state of its youth.

Youth is the trustee of posterity. The investment, both moral and material, that a country makes in the skill development of the young human resources can, therefore, be a great indicator of the future of the nation. It is the avenues provided by the state-- of creativity, innovation and enterprise-- that enable the youth to realize its fullest potential.

No country in the world today embraces the extraordinary mixture of ethnic groups, the multiplicity of languages, the varieties of topography and climate,and the fascinating richness of food, dress, culture and religion as does India.

An ageless civilization, India has been the birth place of at least four religions, a dozen different traditions of classical dance, more than 85 political parties and 300 ways of cooking potato!

In the last 15 years, India has transformed itself from a lumbering elephant to a leaping tiger in the field of Information Technology, an area in which it is fast emerging as the Asian superpower.

But the the history of India as an Independent Nation is also known by the sacrifices made by its youth. India remained under foreign rule for almost 300 years. It emerged on the world scene as an independent State after an arduous and prolonged struggle. Supreme sacrifices were made by the youth of India to secure this freedom.

Be it Bhagat Singh or Khudi Ram Bose or Chandra Shekhar Azad, the sacrifices they made to free India from the clutches of the British imperial rule remain unmatched. These martyrs went to the gallows without even a wrinkle on their faces, such was their resolve and determination.

We have come a long way since India became independent on 15th August 1947. But it is ironical that the present generation of India does not even know how many young people and freedom fighters laid down their lives for the sake of the country. Even more ironical is the fact that not even five percent population of this huge nation actually remembers those who died during the freedom struggle.

No wonder then that the late President K R Narayanan lamented the apathy of our countrymen towards the unsung heroes of our freedom struggle during his visit to Cellular Jail by saying that “Nobody, especially the present generation, can imagine the hardship, the torture they have gone through and the ultimate sacrifices they made during such an arduous journey. If we can transmit to the new generation of Indians, at least a little bit of their patriotism, their flaming nationalism, their courage, their capacity for sacrifice, then we would have done something significant today”.

He was also appalled to see that the decrepit state of the Jail that should actually have been a national memorial worthy of a pilgrimage.

“It is important to realize that these revolutionary freedom fighters have not been given the honour and respect due to them, in keeping with their sacrifices. It is the government’s moral responsibility to see that their issues and outstanding tasks are taken up”.

There are examples galore of the neglect the late president talked about but here is a glaring one, of Batukeshwar Dutt.

Dutt contracted tuberculosis after he came out of jail but participated in the Quit India Movement of Mahatma Gandhi and was again jailed for years. After India gained independence, he married Ms. Anjali in November 1947. Dutt outlived all his comrades.

On his return to Delhi after India’s Independence, Dutt went to see the prison where Bhagat Singh and he were imprisoned. He saw that a hospital was being constructed there. Seeing the plan of building, the engineer told him where the prison cell was located.

A small play ground had taken the place of the cell in which he was imprisoned. Young children were playing badminton there. When the game got over, one of the boys asked Dutt, “You were watching us play. Are you also interested in this game?”

Dutt replied, “I am not fond of this game. But I was observing this play ground; some time ago, this was the spot of a prison cell where Bhagat Singh and Batukeshwar Dutt were imprisoned.”

Hearing this, one of the boys asked: “Who were Bhagat Singh and Batukeshwar Dutt?”

Dutt’s answer was a stunned silence.

He died on July 20, 1965 in New Delhi’s All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS) after a long illness. He was cremated in Hussainiwala near Firozpur in Punjab where the bodies of his comrades Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev were also cremated many years before.

He was survived by his only daughter Mrs. Bharti Bagchi. Today, Mrs. Bharti (Dutt) Bagchi is living in near anonymity in Jakkanpur area of Patna, as a senior professor in the department of economics of Magadh Mahila College, Patna University.

How ironical it is that in every nook and corner of our cities, the statues and memorials of sundry politicians are erected, annual functions too are held with huge fanfare in their memory and remembrance but the people who died for the nation have been confined to the memory of their equally neglected heir!

How ironical it is that even artists and film stars, who have enacted the roles of these real-life heroes on the silver screen, should find their way into parliament through nominated seats while the heroes have been wiped out from the nation’s memory!

No government has taken the trouble to even find out the relatives of those freedom fighters and their present condition. Not even a single NGO has ever thought about it.

The least one would expect any government to do is to identify the families of these heroes and to give them a pride of place in all national functions. Needless to say, their education and medical care should be the responsibility of the state. As President Narayanan said, “it should be our solemn duty to show that we are truly grateful for all that they did for us”.

Given the character of the present-day politicians, it is, perhaps, foolish to expect any of them to take up the cause of the forgotten heroes’ families.

This book – Forgotten Indian Heroes & Martyrs : Their Neglected Descendants-1857-1947 - fills the gnawing gaps in the nation’s memory about the forgotten heroes of the freedom struggle and their families living in anonymity or penury.

It’s a well-researched and unbiased history of these unsung heroes and their descendants, a very valuable work that should inspire the generations to come.

The authors spent more than 18 months locating the 25 descendents of the post-1857 freedom fighters. This book is an eye-opener about the fate of these families as also about how India treats its heroes.

Through this book, Shivnath Jha and his wife Neena have once again proved that idealism is not dead among Indian. journalists and that intellect is a wealth that can be shared generously to enrich others.

I salute their indomitable spirit and their determination to plough the lonely furrow despite all odds, obstacles and hardships. They have repeatedly proved their they are made of different mettle and they reach their goal even in the midst of worst kinds of trials, travails and troubles.



2 comments:

Unknown said...

Hi, this is what i felt....wen i heard abt dis.../

Aaj dekhta hoon is desh ko..toh sochta hoon...
Main (Udham Singh) bhi jee sakta tha...
kya jaroorat the ..wo sab karne ke...
kehte hai shaheed hua...kya padi the marne ke...


Ik sukoon mila usse maar kar...
jeeta yeh Bharat haar kar...
Aaj mili DIHAADI mere sapooton ko...
Kya maine paaya Sab haar kar...



Mila unko bhi kuch nai...bas pannno me reh gaye...
kehne waalo ne keh diya lag jayenge mele...
mele lagte bas kaaagzo pe....
unke mitne ka bas baaki yahin Nishaan Hai......Gill../

Atul said...

Great Kavita... Well Said. We dont have rights to live in 'FREE' air, when SHAHEED heirs are NOT provided by any facilities by this corrupt govt.