Chandra Shekhar Azad was one of the most significant personalities of the Indian Independence Movement. He was instrumental in reorganising the Hindustan Republican Association (HRA).
Azad was born on July 23, 1906 in the Bhabara village of Madhya Pradesh. He took his leap into the freedom struggle at a tender age of 15 when Mahatma Gandhi started the Non-Cooperation Movement. His participation in the Movement landed him in jail.
After Gandhiji suspended the Non-Cooperation Movement after the Chauri Chaura incident, Azad joined the Hindustan Republican Association (HRA) under the auspice of Ram Prasad Bismil.
As an active member of the HRA, he started to collect funds through robberies of government property. As a staunch follower of socialism, he wanted to build a new India based on socialist principles.
Azad became a famous revolutionary when he robbed the train at Kakori, in Lucknow in 1925. Azad escaped the clutches of the British and later reorganised the HRA with the help of other revolutionaries. He was also part of team that attempted to blow up the viceroy’s train in 1926.
Azad was eventually surrounded by the British in Allahabad’s Alfred Park. Refusing to surrender to the British, he shot himself. But not before causing the colonists great trouble and inspiring millions of Indians.