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Bhagat Singh’s saga of sacrifice

This has reference to the review by V.N. Dutta “Courage and patriotism” (Spectrum, March 18). The writer has very systematically and accurately analysed the life of Bhagat Singh. Bhagat Singh was a follower of Lala Lajpat Rai, who was a revolutionary and not a militant.

Bhagat Singh and his companions did some acts of militancy out of revenge against policemen who lathicharged unarmed people, including Lala Lajpat Rai. Lalaji was one of the leading freedom fighters of India. These young men were also partially frustrated due to the weak policy of Gandhi and Nehru. They could have killed many in the Central Assembly if they were terrorists. But they did not do so.

Their sacrifice was to inspire the young generation and to open the eyes of Congress leaders. Mercifully, Jinnah defended Bhagat Singh in the Central Assembly whereas the attitude of Gandhi and Nehru was otherwise, which is a matter of sorrow and pain. The way Nehru wrote about the lathi charge on Lalaji and his subsequent death in his book, Discovery of India, is not in good taste

NARINDER SINGH JALLO, Mohali


 

II

The writer sounds quite objective and analytical in presenting incidents connected with Bhagat Singh’s life. Today’s youth can learn a lot from the exemplary and revolutionary life of the great martyr. Bhagat Singh was tall, fair and very handsome, yet he never got married. His peerless camaraderie and love for democratic decisions made him immensely popular among the revolutionaries of Punjab and other states.

His unique tenacity as a revolutionary was a logical consequence of his deep study of classical works written by the finest brains in human history. It never occurred to him to recant his political actions and decisions. The great martyr didn’t believe in spreading terrorism and brinkmanship.

He tried to give a practical shape to his ideas through mass organisations like the Nav Jawan Bharat Sabha, the Lahore Students’ Union and the Hindustan Socialist Republican Association with the active support of Rajguru, Sukhdev, Bhagwati Charan Vohra, Jaidev Kapoor, Jatin Dass, Ajay Gosh, Shiv Verma and Sohan Singh Josh.

He deeply felt that the British government was actually deaf and dumb to the pains and sufferings of common people of India. Bhagat Singh’s selfless commitment as a patriot and revolutionary surprises us. This rarity in his personal character sets him apart from today’s politicians who are wallowing in comforts of life. We can certainly learn from Bhagat Singh that the existing exploitative socio-economic system can be changed. The status-quoists cannot resist the waves of change for long.

RAJ BHADUR YADAV, Fatehabad

Peaceful struggle won freedom

This refers to R.L. Singal’s review of Mohinder Singh Pannu’s book Partners of British Rule (Spectrum, February 25), in which the author is trying to prove that the Congress and the Muslim League were not liberators but collaborators of the British.

R.L. Singal writes, “...the author has successfully proved his thesis that both the Congress and the league were collaborators in the British design to prolong their stay in India.” The author also says that it was due to the sacrifices made by revolutionaries like Sohan Singh Bhakna, Bhagat Singh, Chander Shekhar Azad, etc that India won freedom.

While the sacrifices of these patriots for the liberation of India played a significant role in the freedom movement, the peaceful struggle for independence launched by Gandhi galvanised the masses in the whole country. It shook the very foundations of the British Raj.

Had Gandhi or the Congress been the collaborators of the British, then these revolutionaries would have denounced them. All these revolutionaries held Gandhi and other national leaders in high esteem.

During the Uprising of 1857, violent methods to liberate the country on a much larger scale could not be successful in the face of the British might. Similarly, violent movements of various groups or parties like the Khaksars, Ahrars, Moplas, Hurs, Gadar Party, Babar Akalis, etc were successfully crushed by the British.

British military power at that time was the greatest in the world. This was mainly the peaceful upsurge of the masses which the British could not tackle which ultimately won freedom.

V.P. MEHTA, Chandigarh

Jodis that clicked

This refers to Shoma A. Chatterjee’s “Jodis that made it in Bollywood” (Spectrum, February 25). The article makes interesting reading, as it enlists all famous and hit pairs that sizzled on screen in Bollywood.

However, the list of hit jodis remains incomplete without including reel and real life all-time hit pair —Dharmendra and Hema Malini. This jodi has given the maximum number of successful films to Indian audiences, namely Partigya, Charas, Dream Girl, Razia Sultan, Rajput, Sholay, Seeta Aur Geeta, Naya Zamana and Dillagi.

The other hit pairs that could be included in the list are those of Amitabh-Rekha, Sunil Dutt-Nutan, Biswajit-Mala Sinha and Manoj Kumar-Asha Parekh. n

ANITA KATARIA, Patiala

Good piece of satire

This refers to Khushwant Singh’s Ant & grasshopper (Saturday Extra, March 3). It is a very good piece of satire. It holds a mirror to every one of us. The media, the politician, the NGO, the lawmaker and, above all, the busybody—all are shown their place. The piece is commendably imaginative and delightful.

Such writings serve a useful purpose as they expose the hypocrisy of those who are wearing the mantle of greatness. They contribute to the awakening of the gullible populace to see how they are being cheated by big slogans.

RAM SARAN BHATIA, Faridabad

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