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Shaheed Diwas 2020: The Day When Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev And Rajguru Sacrificed Their Lives

The name of Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev are etched forever in the history of India. On 23 March 1931, these three legendary and brave freedom fighters laid down their lives for the sake of their beloved motherland, India. In order to pay tribute to them and their valuable sacrifice, their death anniversary is observed as Shaheed Diwas or Martyr's Day. People also observe 30 January, the day Mahatma Gandhi was assassinated as Martyr's Day.

Bhagat Singh, Shivaram Rajguru and Sukhdev Thapar were hanged by the British Government in the charge of shooting and killing John Saunders, a British Police Officer. However, the three freedom fighters mistook Saunders for James Scott, another British Police Officer who order Lathi Charge on the people protesting against the Simon Commission. In this Lathi Charge, Lala Lajpat Rai, a prominent freedom fighter was severely injured and couldn't recover from his injury. He succumbed to his injuries on 17 November 1928. This is when Bhagat Singh vowed to avenge the death of Lala Lajpat Rai.

After shooting John Saunders, Bhagat Singh and his associates carried a bomb explosion in the Central Legislative Assembly and fled away. The British officials carried an intensive search operation to arrest them. There are many other facts related to the arrest of Bhagat Singh and his associated. Let us go through those facts.

1. John Saunders was shot on 17 December 1928, while he was on the way to his home after leaving the District Police Headquarters in Lahore.

2. Saunders was first shot by Rajguru who wore a mask. Then after Bhagat Singh shot Saunders several times before they fled.

3. While Bhagat Singh and his associates were escaping, the group was chased by Chanan Singh, an Indian police constable. Chandra Shekhar Azad, another freedom fighter shot the constable. After this, these brave men were on run for several months in order to escape the arrest.

4. It was in April 1929, when Bhagat Singh and one his associates Batukeshwar Dutt threw two bombs in the Central Legislative Assembly, though they didn't intend to kill anyone.

5. The explosion resulted in the injuries of a few members of the assembly. Singh and Dutt could have escaped but they decided to stay there and raised their famous slogan, 'Inquilab Zindabad.'

6. Bhagat Singh gained immense public support and sympathy right after his arrest. He was kept in captivity for several months.

7. His associates were too arrested in a short span of time and all of them were sent for trial for the killing of Saunders.

8. In 1931, Bhagat Singh along with Sukhdev and Rajguru was supposed to be hanged on the early morning of 24 March. But due to the fear of a huge crowd, they were hanged on the night of 23 March 1931. Soon after their hanging, they were cremated.

Bhagat Singh was only 23-years-old when he was hanged to death. He sacrificed his life for his country, without even hesitating for a second. Even though he died that day, his fierce soul will be an inspiration to many for generations.

Story first published: Sunday, March 22, 2020, 8:00 [IST]
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