Saturday, September 23, 2006

Why Bhagat Singh Centenary Celebration

क्रांति के लिए खूनी लड़ाइयाँ जरूरी नहीं हैं और न ही उसमें व्‍यक्तिगत प्रतिहिंसा के लिए कोई स्‍थान है। वह बम और पिस्तौल का सम्‍प्रदाय नहीं है। क्रांति से हमारा अभिप्राय है- अन्‍याय पर आधारित मौजूदा समाज व्‍यवस्‍था में आमूल परिवर्तन।

भगत सिंह, दिल्‍ली सेशन कोर्ट में दिया गया बयान, 6 जून 1929

यह ब्‍लॉग भगत सिंह और उनके दोस्‍तों से सम्‍बंधित जानकारियों का‍ ठिकाना होगा। यह साल भगत सिंह की पैदाइश का सौवां साल है। पटना, बिहार के कुछ जागरूक व्‍यक्ति और संगठन एक साथ इकट्ठा हुए और तय किया कि भगत सिंह और उनके साथी जिस मकसद, आदर्श और विचारधारा के लिए लड़े और अपनी जान कुर्बान कर दी, उसके प्रचार प्रसार के लिए साल भर तक एक बड़ा अभियान चलाया जाये। हमारी कोशिश होगी कि ज्‍यादा से ज्‍यादा जितना मुमकिन, उतनी जानकारी और अभियान से जुड़ी खबरें इस ब्‍लॉग के जरिये आप तक पहुँचाये। आप भी अपने विचार और सुझाव बेहिचक दें। इंकलाब जिंदाबाद।


This year (28th September onwards) will be marking the birth-centenary of one of the greatest martyrs our country has produced--Bhagat Singh. As is to be expected the Bhagat Singh birth- centenary will be celebrated with much pomp and show across the country and the world by all democratic, secular and freedom–loving peoples who are struggling to create a just world. Besides, this year will also have the rare distinction of marking the 150th anniversary of the 'First War of India's Independence (1857)’ and the 60th anniversary of our nation's Independence from British empire (1947). As we are all aware the story of India's struggle for Independence would be unfathomable without comprehending and accentuating the ideological struggle between the two leading icons: M. K. Gandhi and Bhagat Singh. This will also be a lackluster story if we efface the contribution, however big or small, made by countless dalits, women and other oppressed and exploited sections. Nevertheless, it is Bhagat Singh alone who emerges as an unparalleled icon of sacrifice, patriotism, courage, ideological commitment and youthfulness. The short but remarkable life of this courageous revolutionary--who kissed the gallows at the age of twenty three--almost emerged like a flash of lightning tearing asunder the darkness of imperialist slavery with its sparkling brightness. Indeed, the light his life sheds promises to guide us to the path of liberation even today. Bhagat Singh was martyred at the altar of his nation like innumerable other patriots battling against a tyrannous and arrogant power. His martyrdom obviously makes him our champion. But perhaps, more importantly, it is his unflinching contest against imperialism, his unwavering ideological commitment and his subsequent development as a socialist revolutionary which even today act as a torchbearer for all those who believe it is possible to break through the web of imperialism in this era of globalization and create a new just world.

We have inherited a firm and commendable legacy of ideological debate and discussion from Bhagat Singh. The duration of two years which he spent in the jail cellar--right from his arrest after throwing bombs inside the assembly to his proud march to the gallows--were transformed by him into a battle of ideas in the true sense of the term. Even today the ideological struggle he waged in the jail and in British courts are a shining example and inspiration for all those involved in the struggle to transform the world.

It is but a testimony to his political genius that during the trial it never appeared that it was he who was in the dock rather his cogent argumentation made it seem as if it was the entire imperialist and anti-human capitalist machinery which was in the dock. It is indeed a matter of great joy and satisfaction that all his statements delivered during the trial, his jail diary and other articles, his correspondence with his friends and well-wishers and his last message to the young revolutionaries are now preserved and easily available as authentic documents. These documents will, it can be hoped, prove to be the ideological arsenal for every generation which is groping in the dark for a way out of exploitative and oppressive systems.

It is unfortunate that official history writings on freedom struggle shy away from giving much warranted space to his ideas and struggle thereby hampering his legacy from passing on to subsequent generations. However, despite all such efforts the power and genuineness of Bhagat Singh's ideology continues to attract people towards him. No wonder Bhagat Singh was very fond of repeatedly using an Urdu couplet which meant that a violent and oppressive state-power could annihilate the physical body but could never extinguish the eternal flame of ideas and dreams.

Hawa mein rahegi mere khayal ki bijli,

Yeh musht-e-khaak hai faani, rahe rahe, na rahe.

Bhagat Singh and his comrades always used to raise two slogans in particular during the trial:

‘Samrajyavad ka naash ho!’ (Down with imperialism!) and

'Inquilab Zindabad!' (Long live the Revolution!)

Imperialism is still a stark and unfortunate reality in the twenty-first century and the task of a revolutionary transformation of Indian society and the establishment of a peoples’ state far from accomplished. The dream seen by Bhagat Singh and his comrades is still unfulfilled and continues to knock us in our slumber. The dream to transcend violence, war, exploitation of man by man, deprivation, poverty, hunger, unemployment, communalism and casteism by establishing a genuine socialist society. Bhagat Singh and his comrades had vowed to go on fighting until oppression and exploitation are eradicated from society- “Not only freedom from white masters, but also the emancipation from brown/black masters is our aim”, they used to say. It is these very dreams and scientific ideas which are at the heart of his birth-centennary celebrations.




Bhagat Singh Birth Centenary Celebration 2006-07


Bhagat Singh Birth Centenary Celebration Committee, Patna.


Urban and rural areas of Patna. The committee can, however, expand its area of operations as per requirement.


Kaifi Azmi IPTA Cultural Centre, 701, Ashiana Chambers, Exhibition Road, Patna-800001.


The committee's period of operation shall be 2006-07.


The primary concern of the committee would be to disseminate the ideology of Bhagat Singh and his comrades. To attain these objectives the committee shall strive:

  1. To identify young boys/girls with potential to form the vanguard of the process of social change and to associate them with the committee's programme. In addition various mohallas/wards must be identified for the establishment of BHAGAT SINGH STUDY CIRCLES which will act as centers for their ideological training and education. Needless to add, the committee will aspire to play an active role in the establishment and coordination of these study-circles.
  2. To undertake MASS AWARENESS CAMPAIGNS to disseminate the ideas and vision of Bhagat Singh among all sections of society [these campaigns could include workshops, popular lectures, meetings, rallies, publication of booklets, posters, painting exhibitions, film-festivals, seminars etc.]
  3. To organize special programmes in schools/ colleges so as to make the new generation aware of the theoretical and practical aspects of Bhagat Singh’s life. These programmes could include quiz, elocution, painting and other competitions revolving around themes such as ‘National Freedom Struggle’ or ‘Revolutionary Movement in India’.
  4. To publish and disseminate documents, photographs/ pictures, articles and letters related to Bhagat Singh and his Comrades.
  5. To contact various other ‘programmes and organizing committees’ related to Bhagat Singh centenary celebrations ( In Patna and other parts of Bihar, in particular, and at national and International level, in general) and to inform them about our programme. Our committee shall also strive to coordinate with the aforementioned committees and ensure an exchange of at least some select programmes.
  6. To analyse issues/events occurring at national and international level periodically in the light of the ideology, programme and objectives of Bhagat Singh (and his comrades) and to aim for positive intervention when possible and necessary.
  7. To publish and distribute a calendar entailing the various important events related to Bhagat Singh’s revolutionary life and career in various parts of Patna.
  8. To identify various dates which proved decisive in the life of Bhagat Singh and comrades and to visualize effective programmes around them in 2006-07. For instance, Jalianwaala Bagh Massacre (13 April), Kakori Train Dacoity (9 August), Establishment of Hindustan Socialist Republican Association [ H.S.R.A. ] (8-9 September), Simon Commission Boycott (30 Oct), Assembly Bomb Event (8 April) etc. Besides, Bhagat Singh’s Birthday (27 September) must be celebrated as a special day.
  9. To organize a special convention on 23rd March, the day when Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev and Rajguru were martyred. Also, to construct about 100 temporary ‘altars of sacrifice’ on this day where people can offer flowers to ensure a wider participation of Patna citizenry.
  10. To inspire the various theatre groups, poets, artists, musicians and singers of Patna to create and perform plays, songs etc. and to provide necessary resources for the same.
  11. To utilize and explore emerging technical and communication mediums ( like e-mails, sms-campaigns etc.) apart from the traditional mediums for the dissemination of our programme, aim and objectives. In this context, the committee will develop a web-site so as to address frequent internet users.
  12. To submit a eight-point memorandum to the state and central governments and to organize demonstrations/rallies so that these demands could be met. The eight demands are as follows:

(i) To install Bhagat Singh’s portrait in Central Assembly Hall.

(ii) To give apt space to the life, struggles and vision of Bhagat Singh and other revolutionaries in history text-books.

(iii) To declare 23rd March--the day of martyrdom of Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev and Rajguru--as the ‘National Martyr Day’.

(iv) To release postal ticket on Bhagat Singh.

(v) To provide low-priced editions of the articles-letters-recollections of Bhagat Singh and other revolutionaries and to publish attractive and interesting comics, picture books for children and adolescents.

(vi) To install the statue of Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev and Rajguru near Patna Junction.

(vii) To establish ‘Bhagat Singh Research Centre’ in the history department of Patna University.

(viii) To declare the park opposite the District Magistrate's residence as the ‘1857 Memorial Park’ and establish therein a statue of Pir Ali who is supposed to have been martyred at that spot.

  1. To decide on three or four dates when the organizing committee could take up large–scale programmes on a central level. The rest of the above mentioned programmes could be undertaken on their own initiative by any organization group or individual on the behalf of the committee. The committee, however, shall strive to arrange the necessary resources for all such independent programmes.
  2. To develop the convening committee as a capable RESOURCE CENTRE.
  3. To invite the prominent intellectuals of pre-independence and undivided India (i. e. now trifurcated to India, Bangladesh and Pakistan) from time to time in our programme.

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