Lal Bahadur Shastri

 

Lal Bahadur Shastri, the second Prime Minister of India, was born on October 2, 1904 at Mughalsarai, a railway colony located at seven miles away from Varanasi. He imbibed boldness, courage, selflessness, self-respect and other virtues from his parents Shradha Prasad and Ramdulari Devi.

In 1921, Gandhi Ji launched Non Cooperation Movement and called to the youth to fight for the noble cause of freedom. Shastri was highly influenced by the movement and joined the freedom struggle at the age of 17. He was arrested during the movement but was later released. He then joined Kashi Vidya Peeth and earned the degree of ‘Shashtri’. After earning this degree, he joined ‘The Servants of the People Society’ that was started by Lala Lajpat Rai in 1921, with the aim to train youth who were resolved to dedicate their lives for the country.

Bahadur Shastri married Lalita Devi in 1927. Being a true follower of Gandhi Ji, he took a spinning wheel and few yards of khadi in dowry. In response to the call of Gandhi Ji, he actively participated in the Civil Disobedience Movement, Salt Stayagraha and Quit India Movement for which he was sentenced to imprisonment several times. Finally, in 1947 Britishers were forced to quit India. Thereafter, in 1947, he was appointed as Minister of Police and Transport in Pant’s Cabinet and in 1964 as Prime Minister of India.

In 1965, war started between India and Pakistan. During this war, Shastri played a key role in maintaining internal security of the country. He coined a slogan ‘Jai Jawan Jai Kisan’ to bring unity within the country and finally led India to victory. He died on January 10, 1966 at Tashkent after he had signed the Joint Declaration with President Agha Khan of Pakistan.

 
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