Lala Lajpat Rai – The Punjab Kesari or The Lion Of Punjab. A Short Biography

Lala Lajpat Rai was one of the most prominent leaders of the Indian independence movement. He was born in 1865 in the Punjab province of British India into a wealthy and influential family. He was educated in both India and England and became a lawyer. He quickly rose to prominence in the Indian National Congress and was a leading voice in the fight for independence from British rule. He was jailed several times for his political activities but continued to fight for India’s freedom.


He was injured and killed by British police in 1928 while leading a protest against the British government’s decision to ban Indian nationalist leaders from speaking in public. His death was a major catalyst for the Indian independence movement, and he is revered as a national hero in India today.


Early life:

Lala Lajpat Rai was born on 28 January 1865 in the village of Dhudike in the Punjab Province of British India. His father, Munshi Radha Krishna, was a government school teacher. He was a scholar of Sanskrit and Persian. Lala Lajpat Rai spent most of his youth in Jagraon. In 1870 his father transferred to Rewari. He got his primary education in Government Higher Secondary School, Rewari. He studied at the Government College in Lahore and the University of Calcutta. He became a lawyer. He contacted future freedom fighters and patriots at the Government College Lahore. He was inspired by the Hindu reformist movement while studying in Lahore. He became founder-editor of Lahore-based Arya Gazette in 1877 and later joined the Indian National Congress. He was married at an early age and had four children.



His father, Munshi Radha Krishna, was transferred to Rohtak. Rai Sikh came to Rohtak after completing his studies at Lahore in 1884. He moved to his father in Hisar in 1886. He started to practice in the bar council and became its founding member of bar council Hisar. He also founded the Hisar district branch of the National Congress.



He took part in Punjab political agitation after joining the National Indian Congress. In December 1907, Rai’s supporters attempted to win the election of party president, but they failed, and he could not succeed. In the Calcutta Special Session of 1920, he was elected the president of the Indian national congress. He believed the Hindu society was required to fight its own battle with the caste system. Vedas (an integral part of religion) were not allowed to be read by the lower caste. Lala Lajpat Rai approved that the lower caste also should be allowed to read the Vedas and recite the mantras. He believed that Vedas should be a source of learning for everyone.


Travel to the United States:

In 1917, Lajpat Rai traveled to the United States. He visited the Sikh community on the western seaboard, a universe, and met with the workers in the Philippines. He returned during World War I. In New York City in the United States, he founded the Indian Home Rule League. He also started a monthly journal named the Young India and Hindustan Information Services Association. In Oct 1917, Rai petitioned in the United States; a petition of 32 pages prepared overnight sought the international community’s support for attaining Indian independence.

The US senate discussed this petition. In This book, he also argued about the notion of “color-caste,” caste in India, and race in the US. He returned to India in 1919 and led the congress to launch the non-cooperation movement. Rai was a leading figure in the Non-Cooperation Movement of 1922-1923. Lala Lajpat Rai was a close associate of Mahatma Gandhi and was also involved in the Non-Cooperation Movement and the Civil Disobedience Movement. He was fatally injured during a lathi charge while leading a protest against the Simon Commission in 1928. He was arrested and jailed again in 1930 for his involvement in the movement. He was released in 1931 and continued to work for Indian independence until his death in 1928.



Rai was arrested and jailed several times for his political activities. He was exiled to Mandalay in Burma from 1907 to 1910. He was arrested again in 1920 and sentenced to two years in jail. He was imprisoned from 1921 to 1923. He was released in 1922 and continued his political activities. On his release, he was elected to the legislative assembly. During his exile, he wrote several books, including his autobiography, The Story of My Life. Rai returned to India in 1910 and continued working for the independence movement.


Role in the Simon commission:

Engliand set up the Simon Commission in 1928. Sir John Simon was heading this commission. The duty of this commission was to prescribe the political situation in India. All political parties of India boycotted this commission. And all political parties met a country–wide protest. The commission visited Lahore on 30 October 1928. He was part of the protest, and his slogan was “Simon, go back.” The protestors brought black flags. The police superintendent in Lahore ordered the Lathi charge. He assaulted Rai personally. He was severely injured and addressed the crowd: “I declare that the blows struck at me today will be the last nails in the coffin of The British Raj in India.”



He was injured due to a lathi-charge by the police in a protest. He did not recover from those injuries and passed away on 17 November 1928. He was a gifted speaker and writer. Lajpat Rai was a powerful voice against British rule in India. He was one of the most influential freedom fighters in India. His death was a great loss to the Indian independence movement, but his legacy continues to inspire people today.


Books and biography:

When Lala Lajpat Rai was in jail, he wrote books. He is also well-known for his social, political, and economic writings. Some of his most famous books include Unhappy India, The Political Economy of India, and The History of the Indian National Congress.



Lala Lajpat Rai was an Indian independence activist also known as the Punjab Kesari. He was born in 1865 in a village in the Punjab Province of British India. His father was a schoolteacher, and he was educated at the Government High School in Rewari and the DAV College in Lahore. He later studied law at the Government College in Lahore and started practicing as a lawyer in Hissar. Rai became involved in politics while still a student. He was a member of the Punjab Provincial Congress and the Indian National Congress. He rose to prominence in the Congress Party during the struggle for Indian independence from British rule. Lajpat Rai was a part of the Lal Bal Pal trio along with Lala Lajpat Rai and Bal Gangadhar Tilak. The trio was actively involved in the Indian National Congress and fought against British rule in India. Lajpat Rai was also a member of the Hindu Mahasabha and was actively involved in the Quit India Movement. Lala Lajpat Rai was assassinated by the British police in 1928 while leading a peaceful protest against the Simon Commission. His death was a turning point in the Indian independence movement, and he is revered as a martyr in India.


Reference Links:

Recent Articles

Related Stories

Stay on op - Ge the daily news in your inbox